A Brisbane Bel Canto event
A NEW FESTIVAL FOR THE BRISBANE STAGE
by Gioachino Rossini
The 13th-century Latin hymn lamenting the Virgin Mary’s sorrow at Jesus’ crucifixion has been a constant and inexhaustible inspiration for the world’s greatest artists, painters, sculptors, poets, and above all – composers.
Rossini’s poignant masterpiece Stabat Mater stands as a testament to the composer’s genius. This beautiful work conveys profound grief and hope through its exquisite melodies, lush harmonies, and the composer’s signature bel canto style, elevating it beyond traditional liturgical music.
In this Brisbane Bel Canto presentation from conductor Richard Mills, we are carried to a place of otherworldliness. Working with an ensemble of four of Australia’s leading soloists including Eva Kong (The Marriage of Figaro) and David Parkin (Rigoletto), Mills conducts the Queensland Conservatorium Orchestra and a 60-voice chorus of vocal students.
This hour-long performance is divided into twelve movements, each brimming with emotional intensity. From the hauntingly beautiful “Stabat Mater dolorosa”, with its ethereal choral harmonies, to the fiery “Cujus animam gementem”, featuring a powerful tenor solo, the work weaves a rich tapestry of sound that reflects the text’s profound sorrow and longing.
The opera’s final movement, “Amen”, is a jubilant crescendo, celebrating the hope and redemption found in faith. Under the direction of Mills, the orchestration is masterful, creating a sonic landscape that ranges from the delicate and introspective to the grand and triumphant.
Sung in Latin with English surtitles
Running time – approximately 1 hour with no interval
Chorus and Orchestra of students from the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University