2012 Performance of the Year

Performer: Felicitas Fuchs, Qian Zhou and Bernard Lanskey
Title: Stille Sprache
Composer: Andrew Schultz

A wonderful performance of this work for soprano, violin and piano with the violin and voice totally in unison - the violin seemingly taking the vocal line on occasions. The performance showed sensitivity, empathy and strong control over tone colour. Even though it was a piece on “silence” it demanded concentration from the listener and was extremely rewarding.

Performer: Michael Kieran Harvey
Title: Piano Sonata No 3
Composer: Lawrence Whiffin

Beautifully played with delicate nuances, this performance had warmth and a variety of sound. The work is complex and difficult and well suited to the performer who is known to relish a challenge. The performance was intimate as well as communicative to the listener and conveyed the work’s wit and humour.

Performer: Sydney Symphony
Title: Missa Solis – Requiem for Eli
Composer: Nigel Westlake

Westlake’s Requiem reflects an extraordinary development in the composer’s career. It is a complex work which was rhythmically communicative and very touching. This performance touched the entire audience and the performers including the young soloists, did an excellent job in conveying the feeling as well as the architecture of the piece. The composer also made an exceptional contribution to the performance himself showing a hitherto unexploited gift as conductor creating creative tension and being totally in control of the performance.

Performer: West Australian Symphony Orchestra
Title: Two Memorials
Composer: James Ledger 

A focused, precise and committed performance building on a longstanding artistic partnership between orchestra and composer. It is a shining example of the supportive relationship that can be built between and orchestra and a composer over time and in this case the relationship has resulted in one of Ledger’s strongest scores. Another important element in its success was cogent leadership from conductor Paul Daniel. This is the tenth premiere by the orchestra of the composer’s work and as James Ledger says: “… we obviously have, by now, a rapport, in fact I’m probably a part of the furniture….”