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NZTrio Presents The Americas


To experience top-notch classical musicianship - minus the formalities - catch NZTrio: The Americas. Four performances will be held throughout March at various inviting venues around Auckland and the Coromandel, including two Art3 (art to the power of 3) experiences at Mairangi Arts Centre and the beautiful Te Uru Waitākere Contemporary Gallery as part of the Titirangi Music Festival.


Ashley Brown (cello) welcomes back Andrew Beer (violin) and Stephen De Pledge (piano) for a ripper of a programme with elements of New York nightlife, the wild west, jazzy blues, plus a liberal dose of spice from south o’ the border. It’s classical music, but it’s wearing boots to the party - so dress casual, bring a compadre, and enjoy the ride.

The programme features music by Kenji Bunch, Paul Schoenfield, Gunther Schuller, Raimundo Penaforte, Astor Piazzolla and New Zealand’s own Claire Cowan and Jack Body. Those of you who loved Exotica will not want to miss The Americas!

NZTrio presents The Americas

Mairangi Arts Centre – Saturday, March 16
20 Hastings Rd., Mairangi Bay - 7pm,
Tickets via Eventfinda $40 Adults / $30 MAC Friends / $20 Students

Thames Music Group – Sunday, March 17
St Georges Church, cnr Mackay & Mary St., Thames - 2pm
Tickets via Eventfinda $15 ($13 TMG Members) or cash at the door



Nathan Homestead – Sunday, March 24
70 Hill Rd, Manurewa - 5pm
Tickets via Eventfinda $40 Adults / $25 Locals / $20 Students

Te Uru Waitākere Contemporary Gallery – Sunday, March 31
Part of Titirangi Music Festival
420 Titirangi Rd., Titirangi - 5pm
Tickets via Eventfinda $40 Adults / $25 Locals / $20 Students

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Musician Bios

Joining founding member of NZTrio Ashley Brown for The Americas, are Concertmaster for the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra Andrew Beer, and internationally renowned solo artist/Senior lecturer at Auckland University School of Music, Stephen De Pledge. Each has played extensively throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Australasia, with performances broadcast on TV and radio networks worldwide, plus multiple recordings and accolades to their names.

Acclaimed as a musician of “unimpeachable artistry”, Ashley Brown is one of New Zealand’s leading soloists, collaborators, chamber musicians and recording artists. He is a founder of NZTrio and a passionate advocate for New Zealand music. His teachers have included Alexander Ivashkin, Aldo Parisot and William Pleeth helping him to success in auditions, competitions and awards, both local and international. His musical curiosity has led him from an Artist Diploma at Yale to a Doctorate of Musical Arts exploring the collaborative relationship between composer and performer, and onward to sharing the stage with composers and artists as diverse as Dame Gillian Whitehead, Moana Maniapoto, Michael Houstoun, Kristian Jaarvi and Neil Finn and he continues to enjoy a musical career that leaves no colour of the musical spectrum unexplored. Ashley plays the 1762 William Forster ‘Liberte’ cello.

Violinist Andrew Beer has been described as a “musical gift” by the New York Times. Contemporary music has played a large role in Andrew’s musical life. He has served as a performing and teaching fellow at Carnegie Hall and the Juilliard School from 2007-2008, and from 2008-2013 held the position of assistant principal 2nd violin with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. Andrew has proudly been concertmaster of the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra since 2014, and has performed as guest concertmaster with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Humanitarian and outreach concerts have also played an important role in his musical output, and through such endeavours he was awarded a U.S. Congressional Commendation in 2006. Andrew performs on a J.B. Vuillaume violin from 1845, and a J.J. Martin bow from 1880.

New Zealand pianist Stephen De Pledge has given concerto performances with the Philharmonia, Bournemouth Symphony, BBC Scottish Symphony and New Zealand Symphony Orchestras, and performed internationally from London to New York, Tokyo and Shanghai. His discography for Naxos, Champs Hill Records, Quartz, Black Box and others includes the first recordings of works by Bliss, Gorecki, and Arvo Pärt, for whom he made the world premiere recording of the piano sonatinas. In addition to his solo recordings Stephen’s discography includes song cycles by Ned Rorem and Samuel Barber, chamber music of Messiaen, Shostakovich and Schnittke and the premiere recording of Cresswell’s piano concerto. Stephen has broadcast for Radio 3 and Classic FM in the UK, on radio in USA, Australia, New Zealand and Sweden, and for BBC Television. Since 2010 Stephen has taught piano at the School of Music, University of Auckland.

NZTrio Bio

Described as a “national treasure” and “New Zealand’s most indispensable ensemble” (William Dart, NZ Herald), NZTrio is renowned for its eclectic repertoire, outstanding talent and warm kiwi stage presence. The trio smashes outmoded preconceptions of classical music being stuffy or intimidating by presenting a fresh and approachable style that appeals to listeners from all walks of life.

It’s an exciting time for NZTrio as vacancies in the group’s permanent line-up bring new opportunities and dynamic exchanges in ensemble combination switch-ups for each programme. Founding member and formidable cellist Ashley Brown is joined by a glittering array of kiwi stars from around the globe, including violinists Yuri Cho, Andrew Beer, and Amalia Hall, and pianists Somi Kim and Stephen De Pledge.

NZTrio is a respected ambassador of contemporary New Zealand music. As a sector-leading ensemble, NZTrio holds a remarkable track record of over 50 new commissions to date (more than 2/3 from New Zealand composers). In 2017 they were the recipients of the Vodafone Music Award for Classical Artist of the Year.

Touring widely around the country and internationally, as well as regular album recordings, the trio deftly showcases their commissions alongside other skilfully-matched contemporary and classical master works, proudly featuring at least one New Zealand composition in every NZTrio concert.


ends

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