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The Acacia Quartet: Beethoven, Alice Chance and Schubert

April 14, 2024

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Above:  GFG President Margaret Dougall thanks the Acacia Quartet at the end of their performance.

Gunning Focus Group (GFG) hosted prominent string ensemble, the Acacia Quartet, in the Courtroom on Sunday afternoon, 14 April.  And what a performance the four Acacias gave for their 50-plus strong, enthusiastic audience.

The program comprised pieces by Australian composer Alice Chance and two greats – Beethoven and Schubert.  They were all entrancing pieces, played superbly by four terrific musicians at the top of their game, performing with feeling, joy, precision and mutual understanding.

You can enjoy listening to the Acacias playing the same works on the radio or your CD.  But sitting up close to them playing live in a great chamber music venue is a different and indescribably rewarding experience.  It transports you to another place.

The Courtroom showed what an excellent performance space it is.   Its acoustics were amazing.  And it looked just right, with the players’ varnished wood instruments blending beautifully with the Courtroom’s judge and jury benches.

The audience comprised locals from around Gunning and the wider Shire, with others coming from Canberra, Yass, and the like. While many were regular classical music concertgoers, some were new to this genre.  We believe they will be back for more.

The Gazette’s regular concert reviewer, Mandy McDonald, could not attend the Acacia concert, so this report comes from a GFG event organiser.  Readers would be right to question my objectivity when I describe the concert in such glowing terms.  But I can adduce evidence of my claims.

The audience gave the band frequent applause both during and at the end of each piece and a sustained standing ovation at the concert’s completion.  Parting comments from people such as “it was wonderful”, “concerts here keep getting better and better”, and “this music makes us come alive” also show how delighted attendees were.

Finally, I must commend the teams at the Old Hume Café and Telegraph Bistro who worked hard and cheerfully to serve the large numbers of people in the village on the day.  All our patrons got to the concert on time despite the two eateries being so busy.