REVIEW UWA Artistry! Culmination, and VOSE 2014

UWA School of Music presents
Artistry! Culmination
featuring the finalists of the VOSE Concerto Competition
Friday 22nd August 2014, 7:30pm, Winthrop Hall

Dukas La Peri//Dvorak Cello Concerto (mvt 1)//Nielsen Flute Concerto (mvt 1)//Barber Violin Concerto (mvt 1)//Sibelius Symphony No. 2 in D major

Sophie Parkinson-Stewart (cello)// Jonty Coy (flute)// Eliza McCracken (violin)//Chris van Tuinen Conducting//UWA Orchestra

For me, the highlight of the UWA School of Music’s concert year is the Artistry! Culmination Concert as it showcases the talents of 3 of the school’s finest musicians as they perform in the last round of the VOSE Concerto Competition. The standard for this competition is always high and this year’s finalists – Sophie Parkinson-Stewart (cello), Jonty Coy (flute) and Eliza McCracken (violin) – all played exceptionally well.

The night began with the Brass Ensemble performing a short work by Dukas and then it was straight into the concertos – beginning with Sophie Parkinson-Stewart playing the Dvorak Cello Concerto – the fluidity of her phrasing shone in this performance of a very well known concerto (no easy feat!) and as a whole her performance was a pleasure to hear. Next it was Jonty Coy who played the Neilsen flute Concerto – his beautifully clear tone and exceptional dynamic range was empowered by his epic projection and on every front impressive technique and made for a very secure performance – he was also the only first year student of the finalists, and though perhaps biased (being a flautist myself) I would say that Jonty is certainly one to watch, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he soon moved onto the musical fast track of ANAM and beyond! The final soloist was Eliza McCracken playing the Barber Violin Concerto – and hers was one particularly marked by a mature musicality which (I think) made her performance the most successful of the night – here there seemed to be an understanding of the piece that made her performance feel very personal, very aware, very alive, and as an audience felt the most communicative – an exceptional musician indeed!!

At intermission the audience voted for the people’s choice award whilst the Jury deliberated on a winner, and then the winners were announced – Eliza McCracken was awarded the Jury’s Prize, and Jonty Coy was awarded the People’s Choice award, though it is worth noting that all three soloists played exceptionally well, and were all deserving of recognition for their performances. The night ended with a performance by the UWA Orchestra of Sibelius’ 2nd Symphony.

featured image from Grebla Media