Second lunchbreak concert in Sydney's Out of the Shadows Festival, August 2017.
The genesis of this recital idea began two years prior to the Festival, in a discussion between myself and Dr Deborah De Graaff. Deborah's mother, the distinguished contralto, Lauris Elms AM OBE, had worked for many years with Jewish refugee composers in Sydney, introducing her daughter to them, and sending her for tuition to Werner Baer. Deborah also knew Georg Tintner, and through her mother had struck up a firm friendship with the composer and performer, George (Gyuri) Pikler.
I had unearthed a large amount of Werner Baer's songs at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music library. The works were published post-war but rarely performed. Deborah introduced me to Evie and Arthur Pikler, children of the composer and musician George (Gyuri) Pikler, and suggested some of his material to be added to the concert. The program took form through these negotiations, with the addition of works by Georg Tintner (kindly supplied by his widow, Tanya Tintner), and the lesser-known composer Walter Wurzburger, who had briefly lived in Australia from 1941 to 1950 (supplied by Walter's family, living in the UK).
Deborah recruited her fellow performers, Dr Narelle Yeo (mezzo-soprano) and Tonya Lemoh (piano), to participate in the recital. The performers are part of the group Three's Company.
(c) Joseph Toltz 2017