18 August 2014
On Sunday night, the Drummoyne-based quartet Petrichor Sax won the Sydney Eisteddfod Musica Viva Chamber Music Award before an enthusiastic audience at Sydney Conservatorium.
Formed early in 2012 by four students who were undertaking classical saxophone studies at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Petrichor Sax has been attracting attention ever since. The group plays all types of music from baroque to contemporary and has featured with great success at numerous civic and university celebrations. United in their musical interests, the players Mary Osborn (soprano), Lachlan McDonald (alto), Carlo Antonioli (tenor) and Laura Andrew (baritone) scored their victory playing Quatuor pour Saxophones by Alfred Desenclos.
At the end of the night, adjudicators Dr Bernadette Harvey and Léone Ziegler congratulated the six finalists on their fine performances, then after commenting on the wonderful sound and complete togetherness of the members of one particular group, named Petrichor Sax the winner. The Hillel String Quartet finished in second place and Trio Verano came in third.
Carrying a total prize purse of $11,500, this prestigious event was introduced into the Sydney Eisteddfod program in 2006 and has since become a highlight of the annual competition. The winner receives a $7,000 cash prize, along with performance and professional development opportunities with Musica Viva Australia. Second and third prizes of $2,000 and $1,000 are also awarded, while the remaining finalists receive $500 each.
In the nine years, since this event bowed into the Sydney Eisteddfod program, many magnificent chamber groups have performed on its stages, Sydney Camerata and the Strelitzia Trio among them. Until Sunday, piano trios or string ensembles have always won this event, so through its victory Petrichor Sax has etched its name in Sydney Eisteddfod history as the first wind group to claim this coveted prize.
Jennie Lees, PhD
Media Liaison & Public Information