Building on Melbourne’s rich tradition of chamber music Mimir (named for the Norse God of wisdom) features musicians from North America’s most accomplished orchestras, Grammy Award-nominated recording artists and University faculty members from the best music conservatories in the United States and Australia.
The Festival is designed to completely immerse musicians in chamber music, with an intense period of performances, rehearsals and master classes that brings together professional musicians, students and audiences who all share a love of the form.
Mimir was founded in 1998 in Fort Worth, Texas by Dr Curt Thompson, Associate Professor of Music (Violin) and Head of Strings at the Melbourne Conservatorium. The festival has been held in Melbourne since 2013.
This year’s special guest artists include: Victoria Lambourn (Aus), mezzo-soprano; Stephen Rose (USA), Jun Iwasaki (USA), Curt Thompson (Aus), violin; Joan DerHovsepian (USA), viola; Brant Taylor (USA), cello; John Novacek (USA), Caroline Almonte (Aus), Alessio Bax (Italy); piano.
‘I like to say that chamber music is “Classical” music’s equivalent to jazz. While the notes are prescribed in the score, the inflection, nuance, pace and swells can be quite improvised. If one player curves a line in a particular way, for example, the next player has to immediately react, carrying on the conversation, so to speak, as we go. It’s one of the most challenging, yet rewarding, experiences one can have in music. I think the theatrical aspect of chamber music, as if it were an on-stage musical discussion at the dinner table, will thrill our audience,’ says Dr Curt Thompson, Artistic Director.
Providing exceptional educational experiences for future generations of Australian musicians, Mimir guest artists will also mentor young musicians from the Melbourne Conservatorium and secondary schools from across Victoria in a range of master classes, coaching and demonstrations.
‘A life in music is an incredibly enriching, challenging and endless pursuit. One must have dedication, devotion, discipline, determination and, perhaps most of all, humility. This is something we would like to distil to the young musicians during the festival,’ says, Curt Thompson. To read the full interview in Precinct, http://precinct.finearts-music.unimelb.edu.au/2017/08/03/mimir-chamber-music-festival-founder-curt-thompson-in-interview/
Masterclasses and student performances are free and open to the public.
The program for the concert series includes:
CONCERT 1, Wednesday 29 August, 7.30pm
Johannes Brahms – Two Songs for Alto, Viola and Piano
Amy Beach – Quintet in F-sharp minor (Op. 67)
Felix Mendelssohn – Quartet in A minor (Op. 13)
CONCERT 2, Friday 31 August, 7.30pm
Jean Sibelius – String Trio in G minor
Sergei Rachmaninov – Suite No. 2 for Two Pianos (Op. 17)
Ludwig van Beethoven – Quartet in E-flat Major (Op. 127)
CONCERT 3, Sunday 2 September, 3.00pm
Franz Schubert – Quartet in E-flat Major, D. 87
George Walker – Quartet No. 1
Johannes Brahms – Quintet in F minor (Op. 34)
Mimir Chamber Music Festival, 29 August until 2 September 2018. Melba Hall, Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, Parkville. More information and tickets: