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Voice and guitar star in WAAPA’s Schubertiade

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

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WAAPA’s Classical Music students invite you to a ‘Schubertiade’ – a musical soiree celebrating the everlasting brilliance of Franz Schubert.  A match made in heaven, guitar and voice have a long history of producing memorable music together and WAAPA continues this great tradition with Schubert’s powerfully expressive art songs.

A Guitar Schubertiade is being performed by WAAPA’s Classical Guitar and Classical Vocal students on Thursday 31 March at 7.30pm in WAAPA’s Music Auditorium at ECU Mount Lawley, under the musical direction of Dr Jonathan Paget.

The guitar had a phenomenal popularity in early nineteenth-century Vienna, and Schubert was, himself, an exponent of the instrument.  The guitar was frequently used to accompany singing, especially in private outdoor settings where the superior mobility of the guitar over piano was advantageous. Nevertheless, the historical validity of performing Schubert lieder with guitar accompaniment has been comparatively overlooked.  This concert redresses this neglect, presenting an authentic guitar ‘Schubertiade’ (an informal evening of entertainment with music by Schubert) based entirely on authentic guitar editions from the period.

The concert includes a selection of some 15 Schubert lieder, several of Schubert's rare part-songs for small vocal consort with guitar, as well as period arrangements of Schubert songs for solo guitar, and an excerpt from Schubert's Quartet for guitar and strings.  Performers include Jonathan Paget (guitar, and head of classical music), as well as guitar and vocal students in the classical music course.  The program highlights Schubert's rare gift for intimate and personal expressions of pathos.

Lieder, highly emotional and expressive German art songs from the 19th century Romantic period, have found enduring popularity throughout the ages among performers and audiences alike for their strong lyrical melodies and rich harmonies.

Schubert was the supreme exponent of the German lieder.  With his gift for melody and his grasp of harmonic drama, Schubert displayed an extraordinary sophistication. Although he died before his 32nd birthday, the great Austrian composer was extremely prolific during his short lifetime, composing some six hundred secular vocal works alone, most of which were lieder. While that output is remarkable, it is the quality of Schubert’s compositions that makes them ageless. He wrote songs of such beauty and dramatic richness that composers such as Schumann, Wolf and Brahms all credited him with bringing greater seriousness to this musical genre. “Truly,” Beethoven remarked in 1827, “in Schubert there dwells a divine spark.”

This ‘divine spark’ of creativity will be brilliantly realized by WAAPA’s talented vocal and guitar students in the generous selection of Schubert’s best-loved lieder in A Guitar Schubertiade.

For all venue and performance details, please visit the A Guitar Schubertiade performance web page.

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