October 30th, 2017, Stuart & Sons Spring Concert Series, The Crispe Galleries, Bowning, NSW.
Introspection was performed live by Evgeny Ukhanov on a very rare 102-key Stuart & Sons piano as part of the Stuart & Sons Spring Concert Series.
So rare is this 2.9 metre 4 pedal piano, veneered in rare Tasmanian Blackheart Sassafras, that only 6 pianos of this 102-key range exist in the world. Steinway has only 88 keys.
This concert took place in The Crisp Galleries surrounded by its stunning gardens in rural NSW, and was recorded live by the Canberra radio station Art Sound FM for future national broadcast.
I also commissioned Craig Field of Underwood Studio to individually record some tracks from the album; as the Stuart piano sounds better than the steinway I originally recorded the album on. Craig also recorded this concert.
This concert also saw Italian artist Principessa Nike Borghese launch her most recent exhibition (which is going on a world tour) as part of the concert.
She also had on display a reproduction of a triptych she was commissioned to paint by the Vatican, which had just been unveiled at St Mary’s Cathedral, Sydney, a week before the concert.
The night before the concert I was disappointed to hear that there had been many cancellations. The next day however, more than double the number of people I was expecting attended. Other 90 people showed up for the concert and we lost count the number of CDs sold.
I also recieved a standing ovation at the end of the concert, after Evgeny had played the 3 encores from my second album, which will be recorded in 2017. 44 people attended the after-concert 2-course dinner-party prepared by chef Dean Hodkinson. It was truly a night to remember as the whole event was a great success. I was able to celebrate this momentous achievement with dear friends and family who had travelled from Melbourne, Shepparton and Canberra to share this event with me.
My parents flew from Christchurch New Zealand to be there.
I’m deeply grateful to my partner Jackie Clements who supported me through this and gave me her kind permission in using her Dry Grass photo image for the album and with all associated marketing material.
I am truly grateful to the Crisp and Stuart families in having the opportunity in showcasing this premiere and for their support in the lead up to the concert including with the publicity, which was a huge undertaking.
Next year is promising to be very exciting as I reach new audiences both here, interstate and overseas. Multi-award winning pianist and winner of Australia’s 2 top scholarships for 2016, Nicholas Young, will be performing the Victorian debut of Introspection at Beleura House, Mornington, Melbourne, on June 14th at 1:30pm. Beleura House is a highly sought after venue that regularly showcases international classical/art composers and pianists. Beleura House incidentally has 2 more of these rare 102-key range Stuart pianos and Nicholas will be performing on one of these pianos.
What this project taught me is that ‘no man is an Island’. A good team of people is required to pull something like this off: