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‘Multi-sensory delight’ for Hills concert hall

Music

Ngeringa Cultural Centre is set to host its first mini music festival next month, with curator and musician Genevieve Lacey promising audiences will witness instrument combinations and sounds rarely – if ever – heard before.

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Running across two days on the weekend of April 23-24 at the new concert hall at Mt Barker Summit, Ngeringa 24 will comprise a series of solo and ensemble performances featuring recorder player Lacey, the Young Adelaide Voices choir, cellist Umberto Clerici, harpist Marshall McGuire, guitarist Karin Schaupp and jazz trumpeter-composer Phil Slater.

Interwoven into the program will be cinematography by documentary filmmaker Sera Davies, text by writer Chloe Hooper and sound design by Jim Atkins.

“It’s hugely about trying to create new conversations, new opportunities, new works and new collaborative possibilities,” Lacey says.

“One of the things that Ngeringa is really interested in doing is becoming a place of residence where works can be created, so this sort of starts and seeds that conversation.”

She says many of the instruments featured in the concerts are “quite unusual – put them together and they’re outrageously unusual”.

“They [audiences] will hear things that they might know and love but they will also hear a whole lot of sounds that they will never have heard before.

“It’s not often that you get to hear a harp and a classical guitar and a jazz trumpeter and a sound designer and a filmmaker and a writer and then a children’s choir all in the same place.”

Inside the concert hall at Ngeringa Cultural Centre.

Inside the concert hall at Ngeringa Cultural Centre.

The striking Ngeringa Cultural Centre, the result of a long-held vision by Ngeringa Arts founder and philanthropist Ulrike Klein, opened last year as a multi-purpose auditorium and chamber music venue.

It was designed to sit in harmony with the beautiful surrounding countryside, with a large glass wall forming the backdrop to the stage.

Inspired by this setting, Lacey has created a program for Ngeringa 24 that reflects the shifting patterns of light and moods throughout the day, with people able to book for either individual sessions or the whole weekend.

It begins at 11am on the Saturday with the Young Adelaide Voices performing a concert of contemporary Australian music, followed at 2pm by solo pieces by each of the musicians interleaved with words by Hooper, then a free conversation at 3.30pm with pianist and writer Anna Goldsworthy and the musicians. At 5pm, duos and trios will perform music from 14th-century Italy through to 21st-century Australia, while an evening concert will feature the harp, trumpet and contrabass recorder, along with elements of sound design and film.

The final concert of the weekend, at 11am on the Sunday, will feature all the musicians and the choir.

Lacey says the music will be a combination of familiar and new original compositions.

“Most of it will be things that people get to discover – that’s very much the joy of the weekend, we hope.

“The fact that it’s a very intimate, exquisite venue means you are in close proximity to whatever is happening.

“There’s just the sense of being invited into a conversation and able to listen to something that’s been created for that space and that you genuinely won’t be able to hear anywhere else.”

Musician and curator Genevieve Lacey.

Musician and curator Genevieve Lacey.

Ngeringa Arts – which is also hosting a long-table lunch and dinner over the weekend – hopes that Ngeringa 24 will draw a broader audience to the venue, with the possibility that it may become an annual event presented each time by a different curator.

Although Lacey’s program is “unashamedly music-centred”, she believes that incorporating other creative disciplines and offering a free conversation/panel discussion event will enrich the experience for those attending.

“We hope that the weekend will be a glorious, multi-sensory delight.”

Below is an audio sampler for Ngeringa 24 created by Genevieve Lacey and sound designer Jim Atkins.


Ngeringa 24 will be held at the Ngeringa Cultural Centre, Mount Barker Summit, on April 23-24.

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