Ngapa William Cooper
Featuring Dr Lou Bennett, Lior & Australian String Quartet with Stephen Pigram
'An experience that grips one’s whole being: it wrests one’s attention and never lets go.'
'A night of transcendental experience.'
The artists of this concert weave stories through music that speak of the tenacity of the human spirit in times of darkness.
‘Ngapa William Cooper’ was born out of a rich collaboration between Yorta Yorta Dja Dja Wurrung singer-songwriter Dr Lou Bennett AM, singer-songwriter Lior and composer Nigel Westlake. This musical telling of the true story of the support of Jewish people in Nazi Germany by the Australian Aborigines League was rapturously received at its premiere in 2023.
This concert also features a performance by the Australian String Quartet of a work by Bryce Dessner from The National and two works by Stephen Pigram, including a new commission about his great grandmother, continuing a long exploration into his family’s heritage.
Vocals and compositionDr Lou Bennett AM, Lior, Stephen PigramCompositionNigel WestlakeAustralian String Quartet | ViolinDale Barltrop, Francesca HiewAustralian String Quartet | ViolaChristopher CartlidgeAustralian String Quartet | CelloMichael DahlenburgDouble bassJohn KeenePercussionPaul Tanner
Nigel Westlake’s career, spanning almost five decades, began as a clarinettist. His concert works and movie scores have received many awards including the 2022 APRA Distinguished Services to the Australian Screen, 2 Aria awards, 15 APRA/AGSC awards, the Paul Lowin Orchestral Prize (2x) & the Gold Medal at the New York International Radio Festival.
Nigel holds an honorary Doctorate in Music, awarded by the University of New South Wales in 2012. He has conducted all the major symphony orchestras in Australia & made his US conducting debut in 2016 at the Lincoln Centre with the New York Philharmonic and European debut with the RTE Symphony in Dublin in 2018.
Lior is one of Australia’s most treasured singer-songwriters renowned for his beautiful voice and songs that radiate truth and sincerity. He burst on to the Australian music scene in 2005 with his debut album, Autumn Flow, and has subsequently released seven albums to date. /He has toured extensively both in Australia and internationally and is a multi-ARIA award-winner as well as the recipient of numerous other awards acknowledging the respect held for him across several arts platforms.
In 2014 Lior collaborated with Nigel Westlake on Compassion, a symphonic song cycle for voice and orchestra based on ancient texts in both Hebrew and Arabic centred around the wisdom of compassion. It has been performed with all major Australian orchestras.
Dr Lou Bennett AM
Yorta Yorta Dja Dja Wurrung, Dr Lou Bennett AM is a former member of the internationally acclaimed trio Tiddas (1990–2000). A prolific songwriter/composer, she penned some of the group’s signature songs. In 2006 she was a co-founder of the iconic Black Arm Band.
Lou’s work stretches over a vast area within the arts industry including her various roles as Performer, Songwriter, Musical and Artistic Director, Composer, Actor, Soundscape and Music Designer, Educator and Board member (Chair of the Australia Centre at the University of Melbourne; Board Member for RISING). She completed her PhD by project at RMIT Melbourne in October 2015.
Lou uses her own languages of Yorta Yorta and Dja Dja Wurrung, extending to other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander languages that can be retrieved, reclaimed and regenerated through songs, stories and performances.
Australian String Quartet
Since 1985, the Australian String Quartet (ASQ) has created unforgettable string quartet performances for audiences around the world. The ASQ is Dale Barltrop (violin), Francesca Hiew (violin), Christopher Cartlidge (viola) and Michael Dahlenburg (cello).
Dedicated to musical excellence with a distinctly Australian flavour, ASQ aims to create chemistry and amplify intimacy through experiences that connect people with string quartet repertoire.
From their home base at the University of Adelaide, the quartet reaches out across the world to engage people with an outstanding program of performances, workshops, digital content, commissions and education projects.
Their distinct sound is enhanced by a matched set of 18th century Guadagnini instruments, handcrafted by Giovanni Battista Guadagnini between c.1743 and 1784 in Turin and Piacenza, Italy. These precious instruments are on loan for their exclusive use through the generosity of UKARIA.
|Time & Location||
Sun 3 Mar
Show starts 5pm Perth Concert Hall, 5 St Georges Tce, Perth / Dyeedyallalup
90mins including interval
Eligible for package discount
Latecomers will be admitted during a suitable break in the performance.
- Commissioned by UKARIA with support from Ulrike Klein AO and the Adelaide Festival as part of Finding Our Voice, which was supported by Restart Investment to Sustain and Expand (RISE) Fund, an Australian Government initiative.
- Lior, Dr Lou Bennett AM, Nigel Westlake: Carlo Santone, Dr Romaine Moreton & Steve Forrest
- Australian String Quartet: Jacqui Way
- Stephen Pigram: Paz Tassone for Garrmalang Festival