Emma Jardine (violin), Benjamin Kopp (piano) and Martin Smith (cello) are the Streeton Trio and performed at the Bangalow Music Festival as newcomers of 2012.
Emma Jardine (violin), Benjamin Kopp (piano) and Martin Smith (cello) are the Streeton Trio and performed at the Bangalow Music Festival as newcomers of 2012. Mireille Merlet-Shaw

Music festival is a classic

THERE aren't many festivals where you can see globally acclaimed classical musicians perform previously unheard pieces, but Bangalow Music Festival is one.

At the 11th annual festival on Saturday, a group of 250 classical music lovers sat quietly and watched accomplished musicians perform challenging and rare compositions.

The 2012 festival, held at Bangalow A&I Hall from Friday until yesterday, featured four-time ARIA award-winning vocalist Katie Noonan, Australian composer Elena Kats-Chernin, World Competition Cardiff Singer Lisa Gasteen and Russian-born violinist Ilya Konovalov.

"It's not in any way a commercial classical musical festival where we choose repertoires to suit the masses," the festival's general manager John Connolly said.

"Our artists perform exclusively at this festival and perform programs you will only see them perform at this festival.

"It's not somewhere you'll get The Four Seasons by Vivaldi."

For the third year, Christine Carr of Townsville, Queensland, travelled to Bangalow specifically for the festival at the weekend.

"I just love the variety here," she said.

"You can buy your ticket and look at the program afterwards because you know there's always going to be something good on.

"They dredge out these unknown but really interesting works."

The 2012 festival attracted around 800 people over the three days and had one of the best artist line-ups in the event's history, Mr Connolly said.

"It has also developed as a great destination for artists to perform and has become quite a prestige festival to play at."

He said classical music has lasted the test of time because of its depth.

"The craftsmanship and variety from the many centuries that it spans is quite vast," he said.

"The more and more you delve into it, the more you understand how in-depth it is and realise there's so many masterpieces out there to become familiar with.



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