Silvester greetings

I’m writing on the very last day of the year, following many more months of musical activities. After returning from France, I spent a month in Melbourne where I performed in 4 very different concerts. The first was an exciting collaboration between BOLT, Arcko Symphonic Ensemble and Michael Keiran Harvey as part of the Melbourne Festival. The project got a great review which you can read here! The next week I was involved in Arianna on a Bridge of Stars, a concert in the Salon at Melbourne Recital Centre with a gorgeous program curated by Georgia Ioakimidis-McDougall and Peter de Jager. It was a joy to play again with some old musical friends who I deeply admire for their virtuosity and inventive musicianship. Matthew Lorenzon went to the concert! Following my return from France, I set to work transcribing and arranging Paul Lansky’s Her Song and Imogen Heap’s Hide and Seek for string quintet. These works were part of the program for a concert I curated at Conduit Arts, Melbourne, on 1/November.

mardigal marbling

I was joined by more of my favourite musicians – Lina Andonovska, Elyane de Fontenay, Matt Laing, Jordonne Colley and Rohan Dasika – and we performed music by Thomas Morley, Heinrich Biber, Carlo Gesualdo, Andrew Ford, Alex Weiser, and my transcriptions of songs by Imogen Heap and Paul Lansky (slightly different from what was advertised). Here’s a small clip of the Lansky piece:

To finish off my musical month in Melbourne, I spent a week in the ANAM orchestra directed by Ilyich Rivas, a dynamic conductor with remarkable musical insight, culminating in a concert in the Elizabeth Murdoch Hall of the Melbourne Recital Centre where we played Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev and Shostakovich.

…and a couple of days later, I flew to Banff, Canada where Petrichor undertook a 4-week residency at the amazing Banff Centre. During our residency, we performed in concerts, tutored some visiting Canadian youth orchestras, heard eclectic and inspiring performances from our fellow Musicians In Residence, studied with some wonderful Canadian musicians including violist Steve Dann and harpist Heidi Krutzen, collaborated with composers, a DJ and singer-songwriters who were part of the Centre’s Source and Inspiration program, recorded a couple of pieces from our repertoire and learnt new pieces for the future. We also made some amazing friends, and surrounded by the stunning Canadian Rockies it couldn’t have been a happier or more productive month.

The view from my bedroom at Banff!
The view from my bedroom at Banff!

I’m writing now from Berlin where I’m in the middle of rehearsals for a couple of concerts in the famous Philharmonie as part of the German-Nordic Philharmonic Week. I’m playing in an orchestra made up of musicians from Germany, Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, SPAIN, Brazil, Japan and Australia and this Sunday afternoon (4/January, 2015) we’ll present our feature concert including Strauss’ Don Juan and Nielsen’s Symphony No. 4. This is the beginning of my time living in Berlin and I hope the first of many new musical experiences in this great city in 2015. Bis dann! Xina

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