Diana Doherty and the St Lawrence String Quartet


Oboeist Diana Doherty is justly celebrated as one of Australia’s greatest living musicians. She has been principal Oboe with the Sydney Symphony since 1997, prior to which she held the same position with the Orchestra of Lucerne. This tour is a rare opportunity to experience her artistry in combination with her international peers and friends.

This April she joins the St Lawrence String Quartet on their first national tour together, presenting a program of Haydn, Mozart & Beethoven matched with works by contemporary Australian composers Gordon Kerry and Matthew Hindson.

The St Lawrence String Quartet was established in 1989. Since 1998 they have held the position of Ensemble in Residence at Stanford University and are Visting Artists at Toronto University.  Violinist Geoff Nuttall and violist Lesley Robertson are founding members of the group; cellist Christopher Costanza joined the quartet in 2003 and violinist Scott St. John in 2006. Depending on concert repertoire, the two violinists alternate the role of first violin

Diana Doherty is famous for the physical commitment of her performances; she perhaps is the only musician to be invited to play and dance a concerto – an  innovative Oboe Concerto by Ross Edwards includes choreography for the oboeist. She premiered this concerto in 2002, under the baton of Lorin Maazel who invited her to play and dance it with the New York Philharmonic in 2005. Since then Doherty has become synonymous with the concerto. Likewise, the St Lawrence String Quartet is acclaimed for its dynamism and energy. Put them together in the concert hall, and the result is joy, exuberance, and an experience to remember.

The Quartet is excited about collaborating with Doherty. Geoff Nuttall says “Diana is a perfect combination of unbridled enthusiasm and focus and incredible control. With her, the oboe disappears and you just notice the music.” Diana is equally thrilled about performing with the group, “who really think about how to do things in a fresh way”.

This tour is the first for 2012 which will include a piece by Music Viva’s 2012 Featured Composer, Gordon Kerry. His Elegy for String Quartet (2007) was written at the time of his mother’s illness and death. “My mother lived a long and active life, so while the piece is tinged with grief it also has elements of celebration” says Gordon. Commissioned by the Australian Youth Orchestra and first performed in 2007, Kerry also says “Occasionally….. a piece comes out differently from what the  composer expects while at first I had intended to write  something light I kept hearing (in my head) the kinds of plangent  sounds with which this piece opens. So it became an Elegy, or  lament…… the piece keeps coming back to the  opening series of chords, but explores passages of counterpoint,  as well as faster-moving and occasionally gritty sections. And  finally, after all players have had something significant to do  and passed through some dark times, the piece ends in C major”. (Australian Music Centre)

“…precision, warmth and an electricity that conveys the excitement of playing whatever is on their stands at the moment.”

St Lawrence String Quartet in The New York Times 

“…. Doherty is oboe royalty”.

The West Australian, January 2007

Book at www.cityrecitalhall.com, call (02) 8256 2222 or in person at the Box Office: 2 Angel Place Sydney.




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