June 17, 2016

In the lead up to the Gala Concert at the Independent Theatre on Sunday June 26, I caught up with acclaimed baritone, David Greco, to chat about his program, love of Schubert & Emma Kirkby. To book tickets, please click here.

MB: Can you tell us a little bit about the program:

DG: The inspiration for the program came about because the pianist I work with, Peter Toohey, & I are very passionate about Schubert. As a singer performing lieder, Schubert is your first port of call, he’s the great master of nineteenth century German art song. But I find Schubert an alluring character for so many reasons - his personal life, artistic output, his use of harmony and his use of text setting appeals very much to me. 

Also, I come about performing Schubert from a Baroque perspective perhaps, or maybe a better way of saying it is that I come from Bach rather than from Mahler when I approach Schubert. That’s not to say that I perform Schubert like Purcell, but that I think I try to come at Schubert...

June 1, 2016

Dear Members and friends of the Sydney Schubert Society,

As you may recall the Independent Theatre in North Sydney and the Schubert Society will jointly present a Gala Schubertiade on June 26 at 2.30pm at the Independent Theatre. The Schubertiade will feature the marvellous baritone David Greco and pianist Peter Toohey performing lieder by Schubert and Berg. After interval the exciting Sonus Quartet is joined by Marianne Broadfoot and David Campbell for a performance of Schubert's "Trout Quintet". 

This Gala Schubertiade is a big project for the Schubert Society and I hope you will support it with your presence and by inviting your friends and family to join you for the afternoon. Please spread the word through your social media contacts as well. Details for ticket purchases and ticket prices can be found on the Independent Theatre's website here which you can also access via the Schubert Society's new website here. Please note that this is an event which is additional to our series of S...

October 1, 2015


Dear Friends and Members of the Sydney Schubert Society,


I am pleased to invite you to the forthcoming Schubertiade 367 at St Peters Presbyterian Church in North Sydney on Sunday, October 18 commencing at 2.30 pm. The Sydney Schubert Ensemble will welcome back special guests Susan Blake and Sandro Costantino, as well as Grace Kim and Hayasa Tanaka to present with Jeanell Carrigan, piano and myself a performance of Anton Bruckner's magnificent String Quintet in F major and Schubert’s piano trio D 929 (Eflat major).


The connection between Bruckner and Schubert that this Schubertiade highlights has been explored by musicologists and music historians: In particular, the significant point here is that in the final months of his life in 1828, Schubert took a lesson in counterpoint from Simon Sechter, Vienna’s most renowned teacher of composition who also became Anton Bruckner’s teacher later that century. Bruckner in fact took over Sechter’s professorship at the Conservatorium when the latt...

March 1, 2015

Dear Friends and Members of the Sydney Schubert Society,


I am pleased to share with you the program of the Sydney Schubertiades for 2015. As you can see from the attached flyer our year  ahead  will  feature  a very diverse  and exciting variety of artists performing some of Schubert’s greatest works. It is an ambitious year for our society and I certainly hope you, your family and friends will be able to join us for all the Schubertiades in 2015.


We will start the year with a Schubertiade on April 26 featuring the Streeton Piano Trio with cellist Julian Smiles from the Australia Ensemble and acclaimed Goldner Quartet. Their program at the Goethe Institute includes Schubert’s late B flat  major  Piano  Trio and  the  haunting Fantasy  in  C for  violin  and  piano.  Two Schubertiades  this  year  feature the Enigma  Quartet,  who  impressed  with  their  stylish and  dynamic playing last  year.  They  will  be  joined  by two  special guest artists from the Sydney S...

November 1, 2014

Dear Friends and Members of the Sydney Schubert Society,


The year is about to close and we are looking to convene for our final Schubertiade on December 7 at 2.30pm at the Goethe Institute, Woollahra. For this last gathering we are fortunate to welcome two of Sydney’s very best: Pianists Daniel Herscovitch and Clemens  Leske perform with “four hands” some of Schubert’s wonderful music  in  this genre plus  additional masterworks  for an orchestral exploration of the sonority of the piano. I attach a flyer about the program and invite you and  your friends very warmly to attend. You will  agree  that  this  Schubertiade  will  be  a  feast  for Schubert  lovers as the  piano  music for four  hands features substantially in Schubert’s work and opens a  unique  vista towards the composer’s imagination. We will  hear late  works, including  the famous Fantasie  f  minor and  the Duo in  a  minor-performed with virtuosity by two  magnificent artists who have compiled this program with much...

July 1, 2014

Dear Friends and Members of the Sydney Schubert Society,


Our next Schubertiade 361on August 10 2014 (commencing at 2.30pm at St. Peters Presbyterian Church in North  Sydney)  is  dedicated to the  complex question of Schubert and  the  guitar. Given some evidence  that Schubert may have owned perhaps  one-or  even  two  guitars, some intriguing questions emerge: Did Schubert play the guitar or even use it to compose? Did he envisage versions for some of his Lieder or piano works involving guitar as some  of  the traditional and flexible musical practice of  his  time suggests? Anton Stadler,  Schubert’s classmate  at  the  seminary,  confirms  that  Schubert  composed using  neither  guitar  nor piano. However, a historical guitar made by Johann Georg Stauffer contains a note from 1870 by one Anton Schmid  as  follows: “This guitar was  given  to  me  in  1858  by  my  music  teacher  Ferdinand  Schubert,  being inherited from his brother Franz, Vienna, June 1870.” Why would Schubert o...

April 1, 2014

Dear Friends and Members of the Sydney Schubert Society,


I am pleased to remind you about our forthcoming Schubertiade on May 4 2014 commencing at 2.30pm at St.   Peters   Presbyterian   Church   in   North   Sydney.   The   program   for   this   Schubertiade   features   the internationally renowned Australian Harp virtuoso Alice Giles who has been celebrated as one of the world’s leading  harp  soloists.  The  Australian-born  musician  first  attracted  international  notice  when  she  won First Prize in the 8th Israel International Harp Contest at the age of 21. Since then she has performed extensively both  in  recital  and  with  orchestras  in  Europe,  America,  Australia,  and Israel.  She  presented  her  first  solo recital  at  the  age  of  13  at  the  Sydney  Conservatorium  of  Music,  was  awarded  the  coveted  Churchill International  Fellowship and an  Australia  Council  Grant to  study  in  the  USA  and  made  her  New  York  debut recital at Merkin Hall in 198...

February 1, 2014

Dear Friends and Members of the Sydney Schubert Society,


I  am  very  excited  to  be  able  to share  with  you our 2014 program  of  Schubertiades.  This  year,  we  have  tried  to  give special attention to  important  connections within musical and  cultural life  and history both  in Schubert’s-and in  our time.  Further,  we  are  keen  to  improve the  way  we  involve young,  emerging  artists  in  the  performance  of  Schubert’s music. As the Society grows the appreciation and knowledge of  Schubert’s  music we  must remain mindful  that  young musicians  need  to  be  provided  with  opportunities  to  play Schubert’s  music.  To  this  effect,  I  have  decided  this  year  to consolidate  my approach to the Sydney Schubert Ensemble. This    group    of    like-minded    musicians    and    Schubert enthusiasts   will   increasingly   involve   and   feature   young artists  at  the threshold of  their  professional  life.  In  my  role as   an   educator   and   teacher...

Dear Members and Friends of the Sydney Schubert Society,

I  am  very  excited  about our final  Schubertiade  for  2013:  not  only  are  we  able  to  present  a  wonderful, distinguished pianist (Geoffrey Saba, but we will also feature an all Schubert program including one of Schubert’s unfinished works (Sonata in C, Reliquie) edited and completed recently by Mr. Saba himself. An insightful scholar and distinguished pianist, Mr.  Saba  writes  about  this intriguing work  below.  


I  urge  you  not  to  miss  this exciting finish  to  our  year  on December  1  at  the Goethe Institute, commencing at 2.30 pm. Please invite a friend to join you as we are looking to fill the hall.


With cordial greetings,

Goetz Richter

President, Sydney Schubert Society Inc.


Schubert’s Sonata in C (“Reliquie”) (1825)

It  is...

June 1, 2011

Dear friends and members of the Schubert Society, 


When looking at the 600+ Schubert Lieder, it is intriguing to consider the role that the text and the poet played in inspiring the composer. Much has been made of Schubert’s interest in Goethe and to be sure that relationship has granted us some of the greatest of his “Lieder”. Schubert’s use of texts by friends and acquaintances also seems rather straightforward. However, Schubert’s motivation to consider other texts and poets seems less clear. In some cases, the interest appears restricted to a few years – we find a concentration of songs by Novalis in 1819, for example. This suggests a number of things, perhaps, not least intellectual curiosity which moves on from one writer to the next.


Our next two Schubertiades are dedicated to looking at Schubert’s poets: On July 31 2011 we will features romantic songs of nature and character by Novali...

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