Event Details

Les Voisins

Les Voisins

When: 7.30 pm Sunday, August 1, 2021

Where: Lake Wanaka Centre

Genre: Classical

Duration: 100 minutes including interval

A classical trio of violin, cello and theorbo/guitars, traversing the music of France. From the tender kernel of the French Baroque, through the vibrant colours of impressionism, and into the swinging jazz Hot Club de France­ with a New Zealand composer's own response-the music of France throughout the centuries has always been an emotional language of tenderness, colour and verve.

Les Voisins [translated, Neighbours] is a coming together of worlds, neighbours and friends. Violinist Justine Cormack and cellist James Bush grew up next door to each other in Christchurch and have remained close friends throughout their diverse careers: Justine nurturing and promoting the best of New Zealand music through her performances with NZTrio; James pursuing the freedom and energy of baroque performance practice with many of Europe's top baroque groups. While performing in Germany, James met lutenist and guitarist Simon Martyn-Ellis-a sought-after theorbist who exudes musicality, warmth and positivity.

Justine Cormack (violin)

As a freelance violinist, Justine collaborates broadly as soloist, chamber musician, guest-concertmaster and orchestral violinist. She was a founding member of NZTrio, playing from 2002-2017. Her notable orchestral career saw her appointed to NZSO Sub-Principal 1st-Violin in the 1990's, followed by Concertmaster of the Auckland Philharmonia from 2000-2004. She served as international juror for the first four Michael Hill International Violin Competitions. An active recording artist, Justine recently released Douglas Lilburn's Piano and Violin Duos with Michael Houstoun. During her time with NZTrio, their CD Sway won 'Classical Artist of the Year' in the 2017 Vodafone Music Awards.

A graduate of the University of Canterbury, Justine has a Masters degree from San Francisco Conservatory and a Doctoral degree from Stony Brook in New York. She has taught violin at Wellington's Victoria University and held a position as Violin Lecturer at The University of Auckland. Through her Creative Performance Coaching business ListenFeelPlay, Justine supports musicians worldwide to maximise their performance success and enjoyment through insightful mind+body awareness.

She plays on an 1868 J.B.Vuillaume violin.

James Bush (cello)

Winner of the TVNZ Young Musicians Competition and the National Concerto Competition of New Zealand, James has performed as soloist with all of New Zealand's leading orchestras. He has worked regularly over the last 10 years with many of Europe's leading baroque orchestras including Akademie fur Alte Musik Berlin, Concerto Koln and as principal cello of Al Ayre Espanol.

James has also collaborated over many years with renowned dance company Sasha Waltz and Guests, performing from the Bach cello suites in 50 performances worldwide of the work Gezeiten. He has performed on recordings that have been released by SONY, Harmonia Mundi, Winter & Winter and Challenge Classics.

He plays on an 1834 Auguste Sebastien Philippe Bernardel cello.


Simon Martyn-Ellis (theorbo & guitars)

After undergraduate studies in his homeland Australia, Simon moved to Germany in 2002 to complete postgraduate study with Rolf Lislevand at the Trossingen Hochschule fur Musik. During his 11 year stay in Germany, Simon appeared frequently throughout Europe and the US with leading early music groups including Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, Concerto Koln and Salzburger Landestheater. In Australia, he has appeared in numerous festivals including the Melbourne and Adelaide International Festivals, The Melbourne Autumn and Melbourne Spring Early Music Festivals, as well as chamber ensembles such as the Elysium Ensemble, Latitude 37, and Ironwood. Now based in Boston, Simon has appeared as soloist with Apollo's Fire and Clarion NYC, with Oregon Bach Festival, Handel & Haydn Society, and he is a founding member of ACRONYM and Duo Corbetta.

Simon can be heard and seen on CD recordings and DVD releases from the Harmonia Mundi, Deutsche Grammophon, Virgin Classics, BIS, ABC Classics, Vexations840 and Move labels amongst others. He has been recorded for radio and television broadcast countless times around the world.

Maurice Ravel's unique voice is gloriously expressed in his sonata for violin and cello, opening the door into the colour and vitality of French impressionism.


Booking information

To be advised closer to the time.