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Virtuosi Tasmania

The Convict Monologues


Virtuosi Tasmania tours the state each year, presenting over twenty fine chamber concerts in wonderful venues ranging from vineyards and galleries to heritage buildings and grand private houses.

The players are musicians from the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and occasional guest artists. They revel in performing gems of the repertoire for smaller and mixed ensembles in more intimate surroundings than the concert hall.

In past years we have enjoyed bringing to the Gallery delights such as Stravinsky’s The Soldiers Tale and other gems from the chamber music repertoire.

This concert will feature performers: Dinah Woods cor anglais, Jennifer Owen violin, William Newbery viola, Frances Davies violin, Martin Penicka cello and David Harvey cor anglais.


This year’s concert will be a sextet of TSO musicians (playing cor anglais, violins, viola and cello) performing The Convict Monologues.

Convict Monologues is the result of a ten month collaborative project in 2017 between Risdon Prison Creative Learning Program and the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra Outreach program. Led by volunteer creative writing tutor, the Tasmanian author and playwright Paul McIntyre, inmates researched, wrote and performed a series of monologues based on the life and times of convicts who overcame the odds and forged a successful life in Tasmanian post transportation.

TSO Australian Composers’ School alumnus Chris Williams was invited to write incidental music for the production and in July 2017, Chris travelled to Tasmania to join inmates for a detailed briefing and production planning meeting at Risdon Prison. The result was a hauntingly beautiful score that offered the audience moments of reflection between monologues and as well as acting as a vehicle to transition listeners into a different scene.

Since the initial production, Chris Williams has adapted the music from Convict Monologues several times, creating concert works for a variety of different sized ensembles as well as a suite for the original instrumentation of cor anglais, three violins, viola and cello.

Other works to be played will include:

A Summer’s Tale, Op 29: III Intermezzo “Blind Musicians” arranged for two cor anglais and strings

Heinrich Ignacio Franz von Biber
Sonata per due Corni Inglese

Arthur Bliss
Quintet for Oboe and string quartet

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Virtuosi Tasmania

Burnie Regional Art Gallery
77-79 Wilmot Street, Burnie, Tasmania, Australia

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