AUTHOR: Heather Leviston

Heather Leviston has devoted much of her life to listening to classical music and attending concerts. An addiction to vocal and string music has led her to undertake extensive training in singing and perform as a member of the Victoria State Opera chorus and as a soloist with various musical organisations. As a founding academic teacher of the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School, she has had the privilege of witnessing the progress of many talented students, keenly following their careers by attending their performances both in Australia and overseas. As a reviewer, initially for artsHub, and also for Sounds like Sydney, she has been keen to bring attention to the fine music-making that is on offer in Australia, especially in the form of live performance. Heather is a valued member of Classical Melbourne’s editorial team, with her reviews of opera and vocal music valued by performers and audiences alike.

Affinity Quartet

2nd August, 2019

“This group of musicians has a collective wisdom and maturity which is singularly impressive … Affinity is a musical force with which to be reckoned.”  Richard Gill OAM Nicholas Waters, violin, Ioana Tache, violin, William Clark, viola, and Mee Na Lojewski, cello, comprise what is one of the most exciting young ensembles to make their…Read More

Richard Gill AO: Celebration of a life

25th February, 2019

Hamer Hall was full. So many friends and admirers wanted to share this opportunity to celebrate the life and legacy of a man who had given so freely of himself and to mourn his all-too-early death from cancer last October at the age of 76. It seemed that virtually every organization in Australia associated with…Read More

Victorian Opera: Parsifal

22nd February, 2019

The last of Wagner’s operas and possibly the last performance of a Wagner opera in Melbourne for the foreseeable future, Victorian Opera’s outstanding production of Parsifal is not to be missed. A six hour stretch, which includes almost two hours of intervals, might deter some opera lovers, but length is more than amply rewarded by…Read More

Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg

15th November, 2018

Since it was premièred in 1868, Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg has accumulated a greater weight of negative baggage than any other major opera. Notorious as a vehicle for Nazi propaganda, its essential core of humanity and plea for tolerance is often obscured. For all its strengths, Kasper Holten’s direction in this co-production between Opera Australia,…Read More

Lorelei

9th November, 2018

Victorian Opera has struck Rhine gold with Lorelei. Classed as “operatic cabaret” VO’s latest commissioned work, created by composer Julian Langdon in collaboration with Casey Bennetto and Gillian Cosgriff, is a witty and unexpectedly thoughtful reimagining of the Lorelei legend made famous by Heinrich Heine’s 1824 poem. There are also connections with the Greek myth…Read More

Otello

19th October, 2018

Thanks to Melbourne Opera’s initiative in mounting operas that have never been seen or have been rarely performed in Australia, we now have an opportunity to see the Australian premiere of the “other” Otello. Instead of the familiar masterpiece by a 74-year-old Verdi, we have a very different version from a prolific 24-year-old Rossini, who…Read More

PELLEAS AND MELISANDE

13th October, 2018

Simon Rattle calls Pelleas and Melisande “one of the most addictive pieces there is… almost more drug than opera”. Being the centenary of Debussy’s death, 2018 provides an opportunity for Pelleas addicts to indulge and Melbournians don’t have to leave town to do so, thanks to Victorian Opera under its Artistic Director, Richard Mills. Last…Read More

MSO: Buddha Passion

11th October, 2018

Cheers, a standing ovation and a constellation of smartphone cameras greeted Tan Dun, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Chorus and a stellar array of soloists at the conclusion of the Australian premiere of his opera/oratorio Buddha Passion. This was a night to celebrate more than Tan Dun’s significant musical achievement; in addition to the many…Read More

Emma Matthews: THE SPACE BETWEEN

25th September, 2018

As the recipient of an unprecedented seven Helpmann and nine Greenroom awards, amongst other accolades, you would think that Emma Matthews’ career trajectory would be a juggernaut of unremitting triumph. Watching her perform what pretty well amounts to an almost 80-minute aria of dazzling coloratura bravura invested with kaleidoscopic emotional intensity seemed to affirm that…Read More

HUSH 18: COLLECTIVE WISDOM

19th September, 2018

There was an excited buzz in the crowded foyer of the Melbourne Recital Centre as people lined up to buy the latest CD issued by the Hush Foundation. This 18thedition, written in response to the Hush Foundation’s aim of providing support for those experiencing tense healthcare situations, features original works by 12 Australian composers played…Read More