We are blessed in Sydney with access to so many cultural events and performances by world renowned artists. Our NSM discoverer was privileged to be an audience member at such an event, one of the Live at Lunch concerts held at The Concourse Chatswood.
Live at Lunch is a series of concerts curated by Artistic Director and Australian flautist Jane Rutter. I attended the Chansons Parisiennes concert which, along with Rutter, saw performances by pianist Simon Tedeschi and Jazz singer Hetty Kate who together performed over a dozen pieces with a decidedly French flavour.
There is always something quite breathtaking about watching artists at the peak of their genius perform and this was no different. The sublime and seeming effortlessness of each artist belies years of work and hours of practice and it was a joy to watch.
Tedeschi in particular is a master and, even though he was turned side on to the audience, his body language and facial expressions conveyed so much meaning. I’ve heard him play live twice and each time it is a truly magnificent experience.
My favourite piece was a duet between Tedeschi and Rutter, Beau Soir/Alhambra Flute Song in the Islamic Garden, by Claude Debussy and Rutter. It was beautiful and there was a few seconds at the end of the piece where the audience took a collective breath just to savour it.
This kind of more refined event is probably best suited to adults only, unless your child is particularly musical and will appreciate it.
At just over an hour’s length, the concert is well suited to those looking for a short snippet of musical escapism during the day. The artists are happy to mingle in the foyer after the concert and there is an opportunity to purchase CDs. I was very pleased that Rutter signed the front of my son’s flute book and now they are ‘flute pals!’.
As an added bonus, you can also book lunch with Rutter and her guest artists after the event at one of the local eateries. Lunch for this particular concert was at Terrazza, an Italian restaurant that serves modern Italian cuisine. It was full to the rafters, so clearly post-concert lunch is a popular option.
The other thing I liked about this is that the lunch venue is literally next door to The Concourse and the whole thing is less than 10 minutes’ walk from Chatswood station, so a lunch time drink is not out of the question.
This was the fourth of seven Live at Lunch concerts, those following feature Rutter who is joined by the Grigoryan Brothers, Peter Cousens and pianist Alan Hicks respectively. Tickets are a very reasonable $33 for adults, and $17.50 for lunch. The venue was full, so best get in quick.
Wednesday 14 August, 12pm: The Grigoryan Brothers
The sensational ARIA Award winning guitarists Slava and Leonard Grigoryan return to Live at Lunch performing gorgeous classical and contemporary works. With a guest appearance from flutist Jane Rutter, the concert features works from their best-selling albums and concert tours. Book.
Wednesday 11 September, 12pm: Matinee Idols & Evening Stars
Romance and a nod to Victoriana, as West End musical star Peter Cousens and flutist Jane Rutter perform popular and romantic songs by best-loved composers Gershwin, Cole Porter, Kreisler, Lloyd Webber, Lerner and Loewe, Balfe and Bernstein. Book.
Wednesday 20 November, 12pm: Two French Fluters & a Festive Noel!
France leads the world in elegance & brilliance on this beautiful instrument. Accompanied by pianist Alan Hicks, join flautists Jane Rutter and Rosamund Plummer (ex-Principal Piccolo, SSO), as they add a ‘double flute sparkle’ to the season with delicious Baroque, Classical & Romantic works played in the French style! Book.
- What: Live at Lunch Concerts
- Where: The Concourse, 409 Victoria Ave, Chatswood NSW 2067
- Cost: Adult $33, Concession $30, Lunch $17.50
- Wednesday 14 August, 12pm: The Grigoryan Brothers
- Wednesday 11 September, 12pm: Matinee Idols & Evening Stars
- Wednesday 20 November, 12pm: Two French Fluters & a Festive Noel!
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