A musical picnic with the Flying Dutchman

Gabrielle Kneipp 19 February 2016


Despite wet weather hitches in recent years, the Canberra Symphony Orchestra’s annual Prom Concert in the grounds of Government House is one of the highlights of the capital’s arts (and summer) calendar. Tomorrow’s forecast is for sunshine and 30 degrees, so this would be an excellent year to pack a picnic and make your Prom debut if you’re new to symphony al fresco.

The 2016 Shell Prom Picnic Concert is held with the support of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in recognition of the 400th anniversary of the landing of Dutch explorer, Dirk Hartog, on Australian soil.

Visiting conductor Marc Taddei, who is Music Director of Orchestra Wellington and a regular guest conductor on the Australian scene, is looking forward to working with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra to bring the audience on a journey through Europe, with a particular focus on the Netherlands. The music will also include a work of the great German composer, Richard Wagner, based on the myth of the (appropriately enough) Flying Dutchman.

Taddei is known for his zest for creating engaging, cultured and innovative programs, combined with a close audience connection.

Wellington’s City Voice described Taddei as, “A conductor who is young, charismatic, and is able to communicate his emotions and visions of these great works to an orchestra, so that they can reach out and touch an audience like very few can actually do.”

The concert will also feature clarinet solos from Alan Vivian, one of Australia’s highest profile musicians. A “superstar of the clarinet”, Vivian’s performance touring has taken him to over twenty countries on five continents. He has held long-term orchestral positions with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Australian Chamber Orchestra and Canberra Symphony Orchestra.

The Shell Prom Concert will be an excellent night of entertainment and you can relax with family and friends. Bring along a picnic basket to share or select one of the gourmet hampers available from Ginger Catering; the SES will also offer a deluxe barbeque. If you are looking for inspiration, Taddei prefers to go up-market with “a variety of fancy salads, cold cuts, perhaps some oysters with bubbles etc…Nice glasses and plates are a must, as well!”

When: Tomorrow, 5pm (gates open at 3.15pm)
Where: Grounds of Government House, Yarralumla
How much: Tickets from $20. Visit www.cso.org.au for more information.

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