The Marais Project and Elysian Fields
Early music specialists, The Marais Project and electric viola da gamba ensemble Elysian Fields open the Independent Theatre’s popular Sunday afternoon Prelude in Tea series with a delicious one-off program titled, “My Heart So Grieves”.
Directed – as ever – by the versatile Jenny Eriksson, the innovative program features music inspired by poets of the 16th century. It is the first 2018 concert in the theatre’s popular Prelude in Tea chamber music series which includes afternoon tea with refreshments and a mouth-watering array of cakes and fruit.
The first half of the concert showcases The Marais Project – Dutch-born tenor Koen van Stade, lutenist Tommie Andersson and Jenny Eriksson on viola da gamba – performing songs of love and loss from the Elizabethan era, including work by the incomparable John Dowland.
After interval, Elysian Fields will play music including pianist/composer Matt McMahon’s gorgeous song-cycle, “What Should I Say”, settings of poems by Thomas Wyatt, courtier to King Henry VIII.
Elysian Fields features some of Australia’s finest jazz musicians and composers including Matt Keegan, saxophones and Matt McMahon, piano. Joining them and Eriksson is bassist Jonathan Zwartz, singer Susie Bishop and drummer Finn Ryan. John Shand, the Walkley-winning SMH reviewer, wrote of the world premiere of Matt McMahon’s song cycle: “Here was an enthralling dialogue between past and present. McMahon has preserved Wyatt’s prevailing mood of courtly gentleness, but spiced it harmonically and texturally…The songs were exquisitely sung by Susie Bishop.”
The Marais Project is one of Australia’s most innovative early music ensembles. It has performed widely across Australia and released six critically acclaimed CDs, the most recent of which is Spinning Forth. Elysian Fields is a collaboration between Jennifer Eriksson and some of Australia’s most acclaimed jazz and world musicians. The six-piece ensemble has rapidly gained a reputation for performances of rare beauty and subtlety that blur the boundaries between classical chamber music, jazz and world music. In 2017 they appeared at Vivid New Music at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and the Sydney International Women’s Jazz Festival as well as recording their first CD.
Tickets: $48 adult, $30 conc, $22 student, and $16 child
Bookings (02) 9955 3000 or www.theindependent.org.au