ASQ & Pieter Wispelwey– Sounds of The Land of Rainbow Gold


Australian String Quartet

The Australian String Quartet (ASQ) in April returns to the glorious Margaret River region of Western Australia and to the picturesque village of Dunkeld, gateway to the Southern Grampians in Victoria, to present its flagship regional festivals; Margaret River Weekend of Music and Dunkeld Festival of Music.

Rich in endeavour, the ASQ for three decades now has created unforgettable string quartet performances for national and international audiences. They pride themselves on their distinctly Australian character, seeking to ‘create chemistry and amplify intimacy through experiences that connect people with string quartet music’.

The University of Adelaide, Elder Conservatorium of Music is their home base where innovation and tradition thrive and from which they present an outstanding program of performances, workshops, commissions and education projects.

Caroline AlmonteComprising violinists Dale Barltrop and Francesca Hiew, violist Stephen King and cellist Sharon Draper, the ASQuartet will be joined by Australian pianist, Caroline Almonte and the Internationally acclaimed Dutch cellist Pieter Wispelwey, in what promises to be a tour de force of musical greatness.

Caroline Almonte has garnered a great following in her home state of Victoria, where she is renowned for emphasising the music she plays emotional potential, while dazzling with her fingerwork and revelatory interpretations

A winner of numerous awards she has performed in Europe, the US, China, Japan, Canada and South America, and at the Edinburgh Festival, Teatro Colosseo series, and major festivals in Australia and has studied at the renowned Juilliard School in New York.

Peter Wispelway 2Pieter Wispelwey, was born at Haarlem in The Netherlands. He has been both delighting and challenging audiences since he was awarded the Netherlands Music Prize as the most promising young musician of 1992.

Peter Wispelway 1He has been coming to Australia since that time, thrilling audiences with his technical excellence, extraordinary sense of pathos displayed through the magical sounds he coaxes from either his period or contemporary cello.

A master of both, Pieter Wispelwey will be playing his period Guadagnini cello when he joins the ASQ at the Margaret River Weekend of Music April 21 – 23 in the wine region of Western Australia and the Dunkeld Festival of Music 28 – 30 April in the Grampians of Victoria.

The Australian String Quartet will also be playing on their matched set of Guadagnini instruments, which were handcrafted in Italy between 1743-1784, which are on loan to the ASQ for its exclusive use through the generosity of Ulrike Klein and UKARIA.

Violin 2Violin 1The Guadagnini Family of String instrument makers have been regarded by many as being, over the last three centuries, on a par with Giuseppe Guarneri ‘del Gesu’ and Antonio Stradivari, who have all achieved a reputation for excellence in crafting classical instruments that produce incredible sounds.

The program of music being presented means that many people will be clamouring to be at every session, as each day and each session offers a multifarious array of glittering sound, that will light up our ‘land of rainbow gold’, gloriously.

The cello being my favourite instrument means I have enjoyed experiencing Pieter Wispelwey playing first hand from when he was a young man to the mature man he is today. I can only urge those who have never had the pleasurable experience of hearing and seeing him play in person, to make haste to book your tickets now.

ASQ 2Who wouldn’t want to intimately sit in the ambiance of a great old Aussie woolshed, a glorious garden, a library surrounded by knowledge, in the historic Royal Mail hotel or indeed, in some of the oldest and most prestigious of Australia’s wineries to enjoy sounds of music both old and new, music that captivates and challenges us all.

ASQ 1This is the thirteenth year of the ASQ festivals, offering a wonderful chance for Australian music lovers to enjoy an exquisite regional escape, with world renowned hospitality and dining experiences, included in the festival’s visits to Vasse Felix, Voyager Estate, McHenry Hohnen and Cullen Wines.

All I can add is to say that the experience will be like being in seventh heaven.

Carolyn McDowall, The Culture Concept Circle, 2017

Margaret River Weekend of Music,
Western Australia

Friday 21 -Sunday 23 April 2017 
Australian String Quartet with Pieter Wispelwey, cello and Caroline Almonte, piano     

An exclusive weekend celebrating fine music, food and wine


Friday 21 April

6.00pm – Welcome drinks*
6.30pm – Opening concert*
Gordon Kerry
 / String Quintet no 2 (world premiere) Australian String Quartet and Pieter Wispelwey
Schubert / String Quartet in G major D887 Australian String Quartet
8.00pm – Dinner

Saturday 22 April

11.00am – Morning concert*
Brahms / 
Sonata for cello and piano no 1, op 38 Pieter Wispelwey and Caroline Almonte
 / Piano Quintet no 1 op1 in C minor Australian String Quartet and Caroline Almonte
12.15pm – Picnic lunch*

Saturday 22 April

6.00pm – Evening concert 
 / String Quartet in B flat major op 33 no 4, Hob III:40 Australian String Quartet
Tanayev / Cello Quintet in G major op 14 Australian String Quartet and Pieter Wispelwey
7.30pm – Gala dinner

Sunday 23 April
CULLEN WINES (Barrel Hall)
11.30am – Morning concert*
Glière / 
Ten duos for two cellos, op 53 Pieter Wispelwey and Sharon Draper
Schubert / Cello Quintet in C major D956 Australian String Quartet and Pieter Wispelwey
1.00pm – Lunch*

Dunkeld Festival of Music,

Fri 28 – Sun 30 April 2017
Sun 30 April – Tue 2 May 2017
Australian String Quartet with Pieter Wispelwey, cello and Caroline Almonte, piano


8.00pm – Opening concert

Haydn / String Quartet in B flat major, op 33 no 4, Hob III Australian String Quartet
Tanayev / Cello Quintet in G major op 14 Australian String Quartet and Pieter Wispelwey

11.30am – Morning concert
Beethoven, Sonatas for Cello and Piano no 4 and 5, op 102
Brahms, Sonata for Cello and Piano no 1, op 38 Pieter Wispelwey and Caroline Almonte

1.00pm – Picnic lunch
2.30pm – Afternoon concert
Carl Vine / String Quartet no 3, Smith’s Alchemy - Australian String Quartet
Schubert / String Quartet in G major Australian String Quartet

5.45pm – Drinks and canapes
6.30pm – Evening concert
Gordon Kerry / String Quintet no 2 (world premiere) Australian String Quartet and Pieter Wispelwey
Dohnanyi / Piano Quintet no 1 op 1 in C minor Australian String Quartet and Caroline Almonte

8.00pm – Gala dinner

10.00am – Morning tea and finale concert
Horsley / String Quartet no 1 in C major Australian String Quartet
Schubert / Cello Quintet in C major D956 Australian String Quartet and Pieter Wispelwey

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