Caroline Almonte and Curt Thompson

Offering the finest in Chamber Music, the annual Mimir Chamber Music Festival is on at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music with some of the world's best chamber musicians, from today, 29 August until 2 September 2018.

Building on Melbourne’s rich tradition of chamber music, Mimir - named after the Norse God of wisdom - features musicians from North America’s most accomplished orchestras, Grammy Award-nominated recording artists and University faculty members from the best music conservatories in the United States and Australia.

Designed as a festival that completely immerses musicians in chamber music, it offers an intense period of performances, rehearsals and master classes that brings together professional musicians, students and audiences who all share a love of the form.

"I like to say that chamber music is “Classical” music’s equivalent to jazz. While the notes are prescribed in the score, the inflection, nuance, pace and swells can be quite improvised. If one player curves a line in a particular way, for example, the next player has to immediately react, carrying on the conversation, so to speak, as we go. It’s one of the most challenging, yet rewarding, experiences one can have in music. I think the theatrical aspect of chamber music, as if it were an on-stage musical discussion at the dinner table, will thrill our audience," says Dr Curt Thompson, Festival Artistic Director.

The Mimir Violin

This year’s special guest artists include: Victoria Lambourn (Aus), mezzo-soprano; Stephen Rose (USA), Jun Iwasaki (USA), Curt Thompson (Aus), violin; Joan DerHovsepian (USA), viola; Brant Taylor (USA), cello; John Novacek (USA), Caroline Almonte (Aus), Alessio Bax (Italy); piano.

Providing educational experiences for future Australian musicians, Mimir guest artists will also mentor young musicians from the Melbourne Conservatorium and secondary schools from across Victoria in a range of master classes, coaching and demonstrations during the festival.

"A life in music is an incredibly enriching, challenging and endless pursuit. One must have dedication, devotion, discipline, determination and, perhaps most of all, humility. This is something we would like to distil to the young musicians during the festival," says, Curt Thompson.

Masterclasses and student performances are free and open to the public.

The program for the concert series includes:

  • CONCERT 1 - Wednesday 29 August, 7.30pm Johannes Brahms – Two Songs for Alto, Viola and Piano Amy Beach – Quintet in F-sharp minor (Op. 67) Felix Mendelssohn – Quartet in A minor (Op. 13)

  • CONCERT 2 - Friday 31 August, 7.30pm, Jean Sibelius – String Trio in G minor Sergei Rachmaninov – Suite No. 2 for Two Pianos (Op. 17) Ludwig van Beethoven – Quartet in E-flat Major (Op. 127)

  • CONCERT 3 - Sunday 2 September, 3.00pm, Franz Schubert – Quartet in E-flat Major, D. 87 George Walker – Quartet No. 1 Johannes Brahms – Quintet in F minor (Op. 34)

See the full list of events for the Mimir Chamber Music Festival on their website here!


Dates: 29 August - 2 September 2018

Location: Melba Hall, Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, Parkville.

Times: Multiple times - see website for full listing

Mimir Chamber Music Festival Website