Philip Shovk With The Balmain Sinfonia

Phillip Shovk sml

The Balmain Sinfonia completes its 2015 program with a summer afternoon of classical music featuring soloist Philip Shovk playing J S Bach’s Keyboard Concerto No.1. Also in the programme are J Strauss II’s immortal Blue Danube Waltz and Tchaikovsky’s dramatic Symphony No. 4 in F minor, opus 36. 

The Balmain Sinfonia, Gary Stavrou conducting
The Balmain Sinfonia, Gary Stavrou conducting

Conductor and artistic director of the orchestra Gary Stavrou points to the freshness and variety of the melodies of Strauss ll’s waltzes, adding “ The Blue Danube’s striking inventiveness and masterful orchestral technique are felt to capture the Viennese sentiment so well that the work has become an unofficial Austrian national anthem.”

Bach’s Concerto No. 1 has long been the most frequently played of Bach’s solo keyboard concertos and it was performed by Felix Mendelssohn in Berlin in 1832. Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4 invokes the concept of Fate as an inescapable force, with Liszt himself saying “Our only choice is to surrender to it, and to languish fruitlessly.”

Philip Shovk is considered to be one of Australia’s foremost concert pianists, chamber musicians, accompanists and teachers. After initial lessons with Anatole Mirosznyk, he continued his studies with George Humphrey at the Sydney Conservatorium High School from where he graduated with the Frank Hutchens Prize for being the most promising performer of his year. He furthered his studies at the Moscow State Conservatory, studying with Professor Valery Kastelsky (himself a student of the legendary Heinrich Neuhaus) and graduating with a Master’s degree in Fine Arts with highest marks in all musical subjects. In 1987 he became a Laureate at the Vianni di Motta competition in Lisbon and in 1988 he was awarded the Hephzibah Menuhin Prize and the Best Australian Pianist Prize at the Sydney International Competition. He was awarded a Best Accompanist prize at the Tchaikovsky Competition in 1994.

Philip has performed to great acclaim around the world and has released 2 CD’s – the music of Tchaikovsky and Mussorgsky on the Master Performer’s label and Mozart’s Violin Sonatas arranged for 2 pianos with colleague Daniel Herscovitch for Toccata Classics. Philip regularly appears with Balmain Sinfonia with whom he has previously performed Saint-Saëns’ Piano Concerto No. 5, Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto.

The programme: J Strauss II – The Blue Danube/ J S Bach:Keyboard Concerto No. 1/ Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4 in F minor, opus 36.

Soloist: Philip Shovk Conductor: Gary Stavrou with the Balmain Sinfonia.

Tickets $25 / $20 concession at the door, visit or call 9181 3929


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