“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.”
W. B. Yeats (1865-1939)
The inaugural Sir Arnold Bax Music Festival designed by ADO Principal Conductor, Kevin Purcell, reflects the ongoing renaissance of the music of Arnold Bax (1883-1953) that began with the Lyrita record label recordings in the early 1970s of which Symphonies Nos. 1 & 2 were conducted by Maestro Purcell’s British conducting teacher, the late Myer Fredman. Having passed on his intimate knowledge of Bax’s orchestral output, Purcell has created a biennial festival to explore every aspect of this largely forgotten titan of 20th-Century British music in special curated concert performances.
The inaugural Festival (Aug.31 – Sept. 1) will feature two orchestral works composed in 1917 – the thrilling tone-poem Tintagel and the Australian premiere of the ballet suite From Dusk ‘Til Dawn; a chamber music concert of works by Bax, Bridge and Goosens; a new documentary film examining the reasons for the unjustified and inexplicable neglect of Bax’s orchestral works in orchestral concert programming to the present-day, as well as a special concert by guest collaborators, Pro-Musica Orchestra (cond. John Ferguson) performing Elgar’s rarely heard King Arthur Suite.