Events 2014 Archive


Tait Winter Prom
St John’s Smith Square
Tuesday 9th December 2014 at 7.30pm
Showcasing Australian Talent
An evening of Music and Ballet

Supported by Commonwealth Bank of Australia

Presented by former Miss Australia, Kimberley Busteed, the concert will feature Queenslander, Jayson Gillham, piano, (TMT Awardee 2009), who recently won the prestigious Montreal International Piano Competition. Jayson will open the concert playing Grainger’s, Handel in the Strand and Mozarts, Piano Concerto No. 14 in E flat K 449, and will accompany Melbourne born, Elena Xanthoudakis, soprano (TMT Awardee 2008), in one of Mozart’s most sublime concert arias, Ch’io mi scordi di te? K.505, for orchestra, soprano and piano.

commonwealth-bank-of-australia-logo (1)_medium

Tait Winter Prom

supported by

the Commonwealth Bank of Australia

Sydney Conservatorium graduate Xenia Deviatkina-Loh, Violin, (TMT Awardee 2013), will play The Lark Ascending, Vaughan-Williams…universally loved as one of the great works from the British Isles.

Elena Xanthoudakis, Soprano
Elena Xanthoudakis, Soprano

The second half begins with the Pie Jesu from Kenneth MacMillan’s, Requiem danced by Sophie Moffatt, a student from The Royal Ballet School. This is a great honour for us as our new Patron, Leanne Benjamin OBE, personally contacted the MacMillan estate to secure the rights. Leanne has a strong association with this work as it was the last piece she performed on the stage of The Royal Opera House before her retirement in 2013. Leanne will personally coach Sophie and prepare her for our Prom performance. Chad Vindin will accompany on the piano with soprano, Marlena Devoe (Winner 2014 Bel Canto Awards) singing Faure’s Pie Jesu.

Calvin Richardson (TMT Awardee 2013) was honoured by The Royal Ballet School when they programmed his choreography of The Dying Swan at the summer showcase at The Royal Opera House. In September Calvin was invited to join The Royal Ballet and we are delighted that they have permitted him to recreate the performance with Royal Ballet dancer, Matthew Ball dancing the solo with Adam Szabo playing the solo Cello and Chad Vindin, Piano.

Kevin Penkin, Tait Scholar
Kevin Penkin, Composer Tait Scholar (TMT Awardee 2013)

Adam Szabo, (TMT Awardee 2013/14), and Yelian He, (TMT Awardee 2009) and recent winner of the Australian Cello Awards, will play the thrilling Violoncelles Vibrez! by contemporary Italian composer, Giovanni Sollima followed by the premiere of a new composition by Kevin Penkin, Tait Scholar 2013. Performed by the Tait Chamber Orchestra, Nicola Crowe, Flute will play this new flute concerto and will be a significant debut for Kevin Penkin’s latest work entitled, ‘Changing Feet’.

Lauren Fagan, Soprano (TMT Awardee 2013)

Lauren Fagan (TMT Awardee 2013) has just joined the Jette Parker Young Artist Programme at Covent Garden and is singing a lead role in Rossini’s – La scala di seta – October 23rd & 24th at the Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House Tickets: Lauren will join Gerard Schneider, National Opera Studio, to sing the final scene from Puccini’s, La Boheme.

The Tait Chamber Orchestra
Conducted by Kelly Lovelady

Directed by Greg Eldridge

Presented by Kimberley Busteed

Jayson Gillham, Piano
Elena Xanthoudakis, Soprano a
Xenia Deviatkina-Loh, Violin
Sophie Moffatt, Dancer
Calvin Richardson, Choreographer
Matthew Ball, Dancer
Marlena Devoe, Soprano
Chad Vindin, Piano
Adam Szabo, Cello
Yelian He, Cello
Nicola Crowe, Flute
Gerard Schneider, Tenor
Lauren Fagan, Soprano

Concert Programme

Jayson Gillham, Piano
Percy Grainger (1882-1961) Handel in the Strand

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) Piano Concerto: No. 14 in E flat , K. 449

Xenia Deviatkina-Loh, Violin
Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958) The Lark Ascending

Jayson Gillham, Piano: Elena Xanthoudakis, Soprano a
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)
Ch’io mi scordi di te? Non temer, amato bene. K.505

Interval 20mins

Sophie Moffatt, Dancer 2: Coached by Leanne Benjamin OBE
Marlena Devoe, Soprano
Chad Vindin, Piano
Gabriel Faure
Kenneth MacMillan 1 – choreography
Requiem, Pie Jesu solo

Calvin Richardson – choreography
Matthew Ball, Dancer 3
Adam Szabo, Cello
Chad Vindin, Piano
Saint-Saëns, The Dying Swan, The Carnival of the Animals

Yelian He, Cello
Adam Szabo, Cello
Giovanni Sollima (1962- )
Violoncelles Vibrez!

Nicola Crowe, Flute
Changing Feet, Kevin Penkin (1992- )

Lauren Fagan, Soprano 4
Gerard Schneider, Tenor 5
La Boheme, Act 1
Che gelida manina
Si, mi chiamano Mimi
O soave fanciulla
Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924)

a Performance sponsored by the Braithwaite Family
1 Performed with the kind permission from The MacMillan Estate
2 Appears with kind permission from The Royal Ballet School
3 Appears with kind permission from The Royal Ballet
4 Appears with kind permission from the Royal Opera House
5 Appears with kind permission from The National Opera Studio

Tait Friends at Australia House
Tuesday 14th October at 6.30pm
Tait Friends at Australia House


Lunchtime Concert
Saint James Piccadilly, London
Monday 30th June at 1.10pm
Concert duration 50 minutes. Suggested donation £3.50

Marlena Devoe, Soprano (Tait Awardee 2014)
Marlena Devoe, Soprano (Tait Awardee 2014)

You are invited to come and hear young Samoan/ New Zealand soprano Marlena Devoe who was awarded the Richard Bonynge Award and The Tait Memorial Trust Prize in the 2013 Joan Sutherland and Richard Bonynge Bel Canto Awards. Marlena will sing a programme of bel canto arias accompanied by the young Australian accompanist, Ella Luhtasaari.


1. Depuis le jour, Louise, Charpentier
2. Caro nome, Rigoletto, Verdi
3. Ach ich fuhls, Die Zauberflöte, Mozart
4. Bel raggio lusinghier, Semiramide, Rossini
5. Se Pieta di me non senti, Giulio Cesare, Handel
6. Marietta’s Lied, Die Tote Stadt, Korngold
7. Ah non credea mirarti, La Sonnambula, Bellini

Marlena Devoe, soprano

Marlena Devoe, a New Zealand born Samoan soprano, has completed her MA in Advanced Vocal Studies at the Wales International Academy of Voice with Dennis O’Neill and Nuccia Focile.

Marlena graduated from the University of Auckland with a Bachelor of Arts in Italian and German. She followed this with a language exchange programme in Florence, Italy before returning to Auckland to undertake a Bachelor of Music Honours in Performance Voice. Marlena completed the first year of her Master’s degree at the Manhattan School of Music in New York, studying with Marlena Malas, before transferring to the Wales International Academy of Voice in Cardiff. Whilst studying in New York, she performed as the soprano in the Opera Box Ghosts Quartet in Ghosts of Versailles and as Antonia in scenes from Les Contes d’Hoffman with the Manhattan School of Music Opera Studio.

Operatic experience includes, Amina La Sonnambula and Servilia LaClemenza di Tito with the Auckland Opera Studio and Auckland Chamber Orchestra, Sally Thomas and Sally with Auckland Opera Factory, and as a student of the University of Auckland Music School, performed as: the soprano soloist in their staged production of Carmina Burana; Constantia in Daughters of the Late Colonel and Laurel in the University of Auckland’s Student Opera Project The Electrical Eclipse after winning the top performance prize for the Douglas Lilburn Award.

As an enthusiastic concert performer, Marlena has appeared on-stage with: Andrea Bocelli; Opera Factory at the Nelson Sealord Opera in the Park with Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Simon O’Neill and Jonathan Lemalu, and Dame Kiri Te Kanawa at her Foundation Gala Concert with Dame Malvina Major. Oratorio experiences in Wales include performing as the soloist in Karl Jenkins’ The Armed Man and Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle.

Marlena has been very fortunate to work in Masterclasses with some of the greatest musicians. She was invited to study privately with Virginia Zeani for two weeks at her home in West Palm Beach and with the Wales International Academy of Voice, she has worked with Richard Bonynge, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, David Gowland, Dame Ann Murray, Nellie Miriciou, Della Jones, Ryland Davies and Rebecca Evans.

In 2013, Marlena attended the Solti Accademia di Bel Canto in Italy, before heading to Sydney to compete in the finals for both the Sydney Eisteddfod McDonalds Aria and the Joan Sutherland and Richard Bonynge Bel Canto Award. Here, she was awarded the Richard Bonynge Award and The Tait Memorial Trust Prize. Marlena was also placed second in the New Zealand Aria Competition in November.

Future engagements include performing at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland as part of the Solti Verbier Opera Project. She will be singing the role of Adina in L’Elisir D’Amore. Following this performance, Marlena will travel to New Zealand in September to sing the role of Lucia in the Auckland Opera Studio’s production of Lucia di Lammermoor.

Ella Luhtasaari, Accompanist
Ella Luhtasaari, Accompanist

Ella Luhtasaari, Piano

Ella Luhtasaari is an Australian accompanist and chamber musician, currently based
in London. Following the completion of her B Music (Honours)/B Science (Psychology)
degree from the Australian National University in 2011, Ella relocated to Graz, Austria.
There she studied at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst, undertaking a Masters in Vocal Accompaniment with Professor Julius Drake. She has recently been offered a place within the Guildhall Artist Masters Piano Accompaniment and Chamber Music programme, and will commence her study there in September 2014. Ella has been performing for many years at a wide range of events including eisteddfods, private functions, regional and university concerts, and during her role as an
official accompanist for the Australian National University. Ella has previously given many performances as a duo pianist, and in 2008 attended the prestigious Tel Hai International
Piano Masterclasses in Israel.

Ella’s passion lies in her work as a collaborative pianist. She enjoys collaborations with both singers and instrumentalists, but also performing as a chamber musician and accompanist for choral groups. Between 2009-2011 she was the recipient of the Margaret Smiles accompaniment prize for ‘Most Outstanding Accompanist’. Following her studies at the Guildhall, Ella aspires to a successful career as a performer and teacher.

The Leanne Benjamin Awards
The Leanne Benjamin Awards

This is a must see event for all Tait Friends and supporters. Featuring Leanne Benjamin OBE and the students of The Royal Ballet School. Join us for an evening to see the work involved to train the next generation of dancers from a group class at the barre to the intricacies of a famous classical solo.

The Royal Ballet, Jewels , Emeralds, 2007
The Royal Ballet, Jewels , Emeralds, 2007

On Thursday 12 June, Australian principal ballerina, Leanne Benjamin OBE will coach a student from The Royal Ballet School in one of her favourite solos from the classical repertoire.This will be preceded by a specially choreographed masterclass featuring current TMT awardees giving a brief insight into their unique system of training and some individual solo performances by the students.The proceeds from this event will be used to create new scholarships for young Australian dancers to be known as The Leanne Benjamin Awards

Leanne Benjamin OBE
Born in Rockhampton, Australia, Leanne joined The Royal Ballet as a First Soloist in 1992 after dancing with Sadler’s Wells, Deutsche Oper Ballet and London Festival Ballet. She was promoted to the rank of Principal in 1993 and since then has danced all the leading classical roles as well as having a number of roles created for her by choreographers including Wayne McGregor, Christopher Wheeldon, Kim Brandstrup and Alexei Ratmansky. Excelling in the MacMillan repertory, Leanne also worked with Frederick Ashton and Ninette De Valois. She was awarded the OBE in 2005 for services to dance.

The Tait Trust wish to thank the staff and students of the Royal Ballet School, Lady Sainsbury for her support and encouragement to make this event a reality and the lovely Leanne Benjamin for graciously agreeing to take part.

ROSL ARTS & Tait Memorial Trust
Concert: 19th May 2014 19:00

Morgan Pearse, Baritone
Morgan Pearse, Baritone

Morgan Pearse baritone,
Lucinda-Mirikata Deacon soprano
Chad Vindin piano
ROSL Concerts

Royal Over-Seas League
Over-Seas House
Park Place, St James’s Street
London SW1A 1LR

Two rising Australian stars in an hour long programme of operatic arias and duets. In association with the Tait Memorial Trust.
Tickets £20; Friends of ROSL ARTS & Tait Memorial Trust £15. Includes sparkling wine on arrival, and Australian wine and canapes afterwards.

Wagner in the Salon
London, Tuesday March 25th 2014

Wagner in the Salon
Wagner in the Salon

Dear All,

Do not miss our next concert, Wagner in the Salon, on Tuesday April 8th at 49 QGT. We are honoured to have one of our great Australian pianists Leslie Howard with his prodigy, and former Tait Awardee, Coady Green playing a set of five Quadrilles by Faure and Messager entitled Souvenir de Bayreuth and another five by Chabrier entitled, Souvenir de Munich. These are not only witty but funny and Leslie and Coady will certainly make the most of these rather wicked little pieces written by French composers in an affectionate send up of Wagner. . .they are such fun.

We are thrilled that Greta Bradman, who recently sang so beautifully at St James’s Palace for The Britain-Australia Society in the presence of HRH the Duke of Edinburgh, will sing two song cycles, the Wesendonck Lieder by Wagner and Debussy’s, Chansons de Bilitis.

Ross Alley will introduce each piece in the program, an expert on Wagner and all classical music, Ross is a music lecturer at Birkbeck College (University of London). We are thrilled that he will introduce each work in the program

As ever we are terribly grateful for the generosity of Sir Vernon and Lady Ellis and the Vernon Ellis Foundation in allowing us give this concert in their lovely home…which has become one of London’s premier chamber concert venues.

See you there I hope.


Isla Baring OAM
Chairman, Tait Memorial Trust


Wagner in the Salon

Leslie Howard – Piano
Coady Green – Piano
Greta Bradman – Soprano
Introduced by Ross Alley


Leslie Howard
Annual re-engagements on 5 continents and a 130-CD discography attest to the burgeoning popularity of Leslie Howard, established worldwide as a concert pianist, composer, conductor, chamber musician and scholar. A citizen both of Britain and Australia – born in Melbourne but resident in London since 1972.

Dr. Howard has accomplished a feat unequalled by any solo artist in recording history – his 97-CD survey (for Hyperion) of the complete piano music of Franz Liszt. .This monumental project merited Dr. Howard’s entry into the Guinness Book of World Records, 6 Grands Prix du Disque and – all presented to him by the President of Hungary

The Trust are delighted to welcome Leslie back to play for us again.

Coady Green
Tait Awardee, Coady Green is acknowledged as a major rising talent on the international concert circuit, having been described as “a virtuoso pianist with sensitivity, intelligence and charm”, and “accurate and exhilarating”, (Musical Opinion, London), with “a strong and versatile technique capable of the most delicate colouring and tonal brilliance, rising to the challenges of extreme virtuoso demands with relish” (The Advertiser, South Australia).He is active as a chamber musician, particularly in the field of piano duo. He performs regularly and extensively with pianist Leslie Howard. He has an internationally acclaimed piano duo with Australian pianist Leigh Harrold.

Greta Bradman
Greta Bradman is a young Australian soprano who is gaining increasing attention for her vocal capacity and ‘evocative and moving’ (Arts Hub 2012) performances of classical, romantic and contemporary repertoire, both in the concert hall and on the stage.

A recording artist for Sony Music, Greta is the 2013 recipient of the Australian International Opera Award; a scholarship valued up to AUD$50,000, which enables her to move to Wales in September 2013 to take up a position at the Wales International Academy of Voice under the tutelage of renowned tenor Dennis O’Neill and honorary WIAV president, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa.

Ross Alley
This concert will be introduced by Ross Alley – music lecturer for Birkbeck College (University of London). He has also given numerous guest lectures for the Royal Opera House, English National Opera, Wigmore Hall, the Wagner Society, the Gustav Mahler Society, and NADFAS.


The Programme

Wagner Quadrilles, Chabrier, Messager, Faure
Wesendonck Lieder, Wagner
Chansons de Bilitis, Debussy
Liebestod, Wagner (arr. Liszt)
Souvenirs de Bayreuth, Fauré and André Messager (Fantaisie en forme de quadrille sur les thèmes favoris de L’anneau de Nibelung – R. Wagner) (1888)
An oddly humorous series of quadrilles for piano four-hands on themes from Richard Wagner’s “Der Ring des Nibelungen.”
Souvenirs de Munich, Chabrier: Quadrille on Themes from Wagner’s “Tristan and Isolde” (1885-86)
“Souvenirs de Munich,” a parodic set of quadrilles for piano four-hands based on themes and leitmotifs from Wagner’s opera. Chabrier’s set of humorous quadrilles almost certainly inspired a similar set called “Souvenirs de Bayreuth” by Fauré and André Messager, which is based on themes from the Ring Cycle.

Wesendonck Lieder, Wagner WWV 91
Songs which Wagner composed to poems by Mathilde Wesendonck: Mathilde was Wagner’s muse; Wagner was her creative mentor. The intensity of their collaboration is enshrined in these five love songs.

Debussy’s “Trois Chansons de Bilitis.”
1. La Flûte de Pan
2. La Chevelure
3. Le Tombeau des Naïades

Debussy’s Trois Chansons de Bilitis were published in their original form for voice and piano in 1897, with a dedication to the writer André Gide. The texts were those of the well-known prose poems by Pierre Louÿs. As Edward Lockspeiser writes, these songs “provide the most moving revelations of the hedonistic, pagan art of Debussy, a reminder that the antique grace and splendour of the earlier Après-midi d’un faune was not only still alive in the composer’s imagination, but that it was capable of a more remote, and therefore still more poignant spiritualization. Indeed, one may go further and conjecture that Bilitis and the Mallarméan faun are in a sense the illegitimate progenitors of the ultimate glory”
With thanks to AMG All Music Guide to Classical Music Copyright © 2014 All Media Guide, LLC. All rights reserved.

Liszt: Isolde’s Liebestod (after Wagner), S447
Isolde’s “Love Death” is the final aria, the dramatic ending of Richard Wagner’s opera Tristan and Isolde. It brings the opera to a close as Isolde sings over Tristan’s body in a love death.
Liszt made over a dozen of Wagner’s adaptations, this being the most well-known and one of the best “re-orchestrated” works. It starts with a thunder-like opening, bringing a feeling of suspense over the whole piece. Followed by pianissimo, the aria takes the longest path of development, with wandering melodies and picturesque orchestrations that make one forget what instrument is being played. The climax coincides with Isolde’s death, after which everything soothes and fades away into eternity.
Tickets are £38 ( £30 for Tait Friends ).

Tait Friends at Stoke Lodge
A special reception for our Friends at the home of the Australian High Commissioner, Stoke Lodge.
Hosted by Sasha Carruozzo, the wife of the Australian High Commissioner on Tuesday,  March 18th at 6.30pm

The evening was a great success and marked the launch of the new Tait Friends scheme. Adam Szabo, Cello 2013 and Samuel Sakker, a young Tenor about to take up a place in the Jette Parker Young Artist programme both performed.

We are very grateful to the generosity of the Australian High Commissioner, Mike Rann, and his wife, Sasha Carruozzo, for allowing us to use their home to entertain our Friends.