Perth Concert Hall
May 11, 2018

Tim Winton has spoken about being dogged by the voice of an unlovely character while writing his recent book The Shepherd’s Hut. Carl Vine described a similar experience of being assailed by unwelcome musical ideas while writing his newest work. He explained the experience from the stage on Friday night while introducing Implacable Gifts, a concerto for two pianos and orchestra commissioned by the West Australian and Tasmanian symphony orchestras and premiered on the weekend by WASO with pianists Piers Lane and Kathryn Stott.

Vine, currently composer in residence with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, took his cues from surreal art and structured the ideas as musical chunks thrown up against one another. But don’t be fooled, the final product is of course carefully refined and immaculately crafted – Vine is after all a pianist and composer with seven symphonies and thirteen concertos under his belt.

The four movement work opened with the two pianos at war, hurling chords at each other half a beat apart. However for most of the work the soloists were in conversation, echoing and dovetailing each other and enmeshed in the orchestral texture.  The work was scored for a large orchestra and...

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