Sirius Ensemble Premieres Two Australian Works


Sirius Chamber Ensemble will premiere two new works by Australian composer Alan Holley in their June concert – Cicada Songs for clarinet, violin, cello and piano, and a new song cycle set to text by Australian poet Mark Tredinnick. Also on the program is the Australian premiere of Quartet for clarinet, violin, cello and piano by Croatian composer Frano Parac, Chants d’Auvergne by Joseph Canteloube, and Alan Holley’s Zoastra for solo clarinet.

Allan Holley’s music has been regularly performed and broadcast in Australia since the mid-1970s. Over these thirty years, his music has become increasingly well known in America and Europe. His compositions include the opera Dorothea (1988), five song cycles, numerous works for small ensembles and solo instruments and larger-scale symphonic works. He has undertaken commissions for the Sydney Symphony Orchestra which have been performed by its members in the Concert Hall of the Opera House. His music has been recorded on MBS and Hammerings Records labels. Four of his trumpet works appear on trumpeter Paul Goodchild’s CD, Mixed Dozen on the 1M1 label. Kookaburra Music now publishes his compositions and his work is supported by The Australia Council.

Mark Tredinnick, winner of the Montreal Poetry Prize (2011) and the Cardiff Poetry Prize (2012), is the author of The Blue Plateau, Fire Diary, and nine other acclaimed works of poetry and prose.

Frano Parac is a professor in the Department of Composition and Music Theory at the Zagreb Academy of Music whose music has won many awards. He uses legible symmetric forms, clear harmonies, short and simple diatonic sequences, which bring his music to a point which is both new and familiar. He has written for opera, ballet, symphony and chamber ensembles. Parac’s Quartet for clarinet, violin, cello and piano was composed in 1991, at the beginning of the Croatian war of independence, and was inspired by Messiaen’s 1941  Quartet for the End of Time. 

French composer and musicologist Joseph Cantaloube (1879-1957) is best known for his collection of folk songs, Chants d’Auvergne which have unjustly overshadowed his other works such as his operas Le Mas and Vercingétorix, which were performed in Paris in 1929 and 1933. The Songs of  the Auvergne evoke images of Cantaloube’s native landscape in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region of southern France. The popularity of these songs have influenced other contemporary composers, including William Walton who incorporated melodic fragments in his film score for Laurence Olivier’s Henry V.

• Alan Holley – Circada Songs for clarinet, violin, cello and piano (premiere)
• Joseph Canteloube – Chants d’Auvergne
• Alan Holley – Zoastra for solo clarinet
• Frano Parac – Quartet for clarinet, violin, cello and piano
• Alan Holley – new song cycle (to text by Mark Treddinick)

Performers: Ian Sykes (clarinet), Vanessa Tammetta (violin), Clare Kahn (cello), Claire Howard Race (piano) and Taryn Srhoj (soprano).
Tickets: $25 Adults / $15 concession. Tickets available at or at the door.


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