What a year.
2015 was an incredible year of ups and downs: amazing career highlights, great new friendships, seeing long missed friends, operations for family and sad illnesses for friends. Here is an overview of the craziness of 2015.
To bring in the new year I had the pleasure of performing with The Sax Summit alongside my dear friends Andrew Smith, Nic Russoniello, and Damien Mathieson.
January continued to be a month of performing. Niels Bijl joined us for the Saxophone Academy Sydney Summer School and we performed throughout Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne. It was 3 weeks of the most inspiring and exhilarating music making with one of the best musicians I have had the privilege to work with. We also bonded so well and are now the bestest of friends.
Around this time I was also offered my tutoring position at the University of Sydney. An amazing opportunity that would open my eyes to the possibilities of the future.
The following 3 months became a frenzy of rehearsals, arranging, organising and designing. El Asunto del Tango my debut CD encompassed my life. Thanks so much to Niels for planting the idea, Carmen for allowing it to grow and flourish and my amazing team of musos Michael Klugar, Daniel Rojas, Isabella Brown and Carmen. I'm also forever grateful for my amazing engineer David Kim-Boyle and the great work of Jonathan Palmer.
During that 3 months of chaos Nexas launched our 2nd concert series and presented an extremely exciting concert with Frank Celata.
June/July we headed to Europe where El Asunto del tango was launched in Enschede in a quaint pub to a packed crowd. On that trip I also tutored at the Baritone Institute in the Alsace region of France. A week of music making and teaching with Niels Bijl, Jan Manu, Tini Thomsen and the inspiring Joan Marti Frasquier. World Congress awaited and performances with the Baritone Institute, Four Baritones and Nexas Quartet were great fun.
In Amsterdam we spent a beautiful day bbqing in a park with one of the most phenomenal saxophonists, Ties Mellema, we became great friends over this day and he kindly invited Carmen and I to a live broadcast of the amstel quartet. A very special memory of our time in Europe.
One of the biggest highlights of the time in Europe was seeing my dearest friend Donny, his wife Maria and their newborn baby Ethan. It was so special to see my best mate so happy.
When we arrived home Carmen sadly had to go in for another eye surgery. Gratefully Dr Roberts was amazing and Carmen made a full recovery.
We also heard around this time of the sad news of our good friend Ties and his diagnoses of cancer. A tough time for our new friend and our hearts and prayers were with him.
The 2nd half of 2015 included the completion of my DMA thesis a 3 year project that finally came to a close. Carmens citizenship ceremony! And the premiere by Nexas of a new ballet by Matthew Hindson and Cyrus Meurant.
It was an intense year and I pray that 2016 has as many highlights and a lot less lowlights.
the future is bright. Ties is in remission, competition of the DMA is close, exciting performances ahead with Fernando Ramos, Simon Brew, Michael Jamieson, Nexas Quartet. And the continuation of life's journeys with my beautiful wife.