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27/07 - 05/08/2018

Artistic Director Kathryn Stott

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2018 Festival Artists


Kees Boersma


Proudly supported by The Hon Jane Mathews AO

Kees enjoys a multifaceted career as Principal Double Bass with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and as Lecturer of Bass at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, recitalist and chamber musician. As a soloist with the SSO he has given world premiere performances of concertos by Colin Bright and Mary Finsterer, the latter performances earning a nomination for best performance of a new work in the 2013 APRA Music Awards. He is a frequent guest leader of international and Australian ensembles.

Born in the Netherlands, Boersma Kees trained at the Victorian College of the Arts and later undertook postgraduate studies in his birth country at the Sweelinck Conservatorium in Amsterdam. He performed for two years with the Royal Concertgebouworkest Orchestra, including appearances at the Salzburg Festival, the BBC Proms London and tours to Montreaux, Lucerne, Paris, Vienna and Berlin. Upon returning to Australia, he performed as principal bass with the State Orchestra of Victoria and the Australian Chamber Orchestra.

Boersma joined the Sydney Symphony Orchestra as principal bassist in 1990 and has featured as a soloist. Solo works with the SSO have included the Dittersdorf Divertimento for Viola and Double Bass, Bottesini’s Double Concerto for two Double Basses and Orchestra, Dragonetti’s Pezza di Concerto, Mozart’s concert aria Per Questa Bella Mano (with Teddy Tahu Rhodes), and the world premiere of Colin Bright’s bass concerto Young Tree Green, commissioned by the SSO. He is also a regular guest principal bass with the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra and the West Australian Symphony Orchestra.

As a chamber musician, he makes regular appearances with the Sydney Soloists and the Australian Ensemble. He has toured with Musica Viva, appeared at the inaugural Melbourne Spoleto Festival and in 2007 was a featured performer in the Australian Festival of Chamber Music. Boersma was also a founding member of the Brisbane-based contemporary music group ELISION, premiering the works of Franco Donatoni, Richard Barrett, Lisa Lim and Brian Ferneyhough. In his ten years with the ensemble, he recorded CDs and toured Italy and Germany, including an appearance at the Ultraschall Festival in Berlin.

As a music educator, Boersma has had a long association with the Australian Youth Orchestra and their summer National Music Camps as a tutor. He has also been a presenter at many double bass conferences.
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