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If there's a life lesson in the Brindisi toast of Verdi's La Traviata, it's that opera and cocktails go well together. And now Universal Music is pouring the drinks at its new series of "Yellow Lounge" classical concerts, launching on September 19 at The Loft in Darling Harbour.
The latest classical venture in what is becoming a worldwide trend (in Sydney alone, the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Sydney Chamber Opera, Opera Australia and Musica Viva have all presented concerts in inner-city pubs and pop-up bars this past year), Yellow Lounge launches its first Australian incarnation after successful stints in Amsterdam, Vienna and New York.
The Sydney Yellow Lounge will be inaugurated by Harlem-born tenor Noah Stewart, who recently made his Covent Garden debut and became the first black artist to reach Number One in the UK classical charts. He will be joined by Australian The Voice contestant Rachael Leahcar, with whom he recorded a duet for his album Noah, out this week. Lest we forget we're in a cocktail bar, female DJ duo The Faders round off the evening.
Fittingly, it was the "Yellow Label" Deutsche Grammophon, one of classical music's oldest recording companies, that first unleashed the Yellow Lounge classical concept bars seven years ago on the Berlin club scene.
Universal Music CEO Max Hole says the label hopes to "extend the reach of classical music to draw in audiences of all ages who are curious about the music but deterred by some of its long-standing conventions."