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Archived event

Performance details

Sunday 21 May 2023 at 11am
Iwaki Auditorium, ABC Southbank Centre

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David Thomas curator, clarinet and basset clarinet
Tair Khisambeev
Matthew Tomkins
Gabrielle Halloran
Rohan de Korte
Amos Roach yidaki


Mozart Clarinet Quintet
Sculthorpe String Quartet No.12 From Ubirr
Lachlan Skipworth Clarinet Quintet
Coleridge-Taylor Clarinet Quintet

About this performance

Rather than being a group of five clarinets as the name suggests, a clarinet quintet is actually an ensemble comprised of a single clarinet and string quartet. Discover this magical combination with MSO Principal Clarinet David Thomas in this intimate program of exceptionally diverse and mesmerising works.

  • Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet is one of the earliest and best-known works for the clarinet. Hear David Thomas perform on the instrument for which it was originally written – the basset clarinet – longer and with greater musical and dramatic range than the modern clarinet.
  • Australian composer Peter Sculthorpe is known for his evocative musical exploration of remote Australian landscapes. From Ubirr is inspired by a group of rocky outcrops in Kakadu National Park, and home to natural galleries of rock art created over thousands of years by the area’s traditional owners.
  • Australian composer Lachlan Skipworth is known for his atmospheric and often experimental music. His darkly beautiful Clarinet Quintet is a dystopian exploration of our current times, featuring melancholy harmonies and elongated melodies.
  • Written in 1895, Anglo-African composer Samuel Coleridge-Taylor’s Clarinet Quintet came into being almost by accident. His composition teacher at the Royal College of Music, Charles Stanford, challenged him that nobody would be able to write a clarinet quintet that avoided influence by Brahms – so he wrote one influenced by Dvořák instead.

Duration: approx. 2 hours including interval

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