Jenny Game-Lopata, Saxophones
Composer and saxophonist with diverse interests, Dr Jenny Game embraces improvisation, contemporary composition, sound design, Indigenous Australian, Middle Eastern and inter-cultural influences, surprising audiences with the strength and subtlety of her music. In 2012, her intercultural chamber opera The Aqueduct, premiered at the Restrung Chamber Music Festival in Brisbane. A scholar and educator who has lectured at universities across eastern Australia, Jenny has published articles on a variety of topics including improvisation, intercultural music, opera and music education. She is currently Academic Manager at the Southern Cross Education Institute. Jenny has been invited to perform her compositions at international festivals including the Wangaratta, Melbourne and Manly International Jazz Festivals. Jenny's works have been performed at the 1992 New Music Composer’s Conference, the 2012 Bellingen Classical Music Festival (commissioned by Accord Pour Deux) as well as the 1994, 1997 and 2001 Composing Women’s festivals. In 2019 Jenny composed a new circus opera with director Zebastian Hunter (Cirque du Soleil) that is now touring Europe. The Jenny Game Ensemble toured eastern Australia in 1998 following the release of The Jenny Game Quartet’s “Seven Seas”, assisted by a Playing Australia grant, and recorded The Jenny Game Ensemble’s release “Jacinta's Song” (Move Records, supported by Arts Victoria, 2002) with Peter and Poul.
Peter Neville, Mallet Percussion
Peter is a founding member of the internationally renowned ELISION Ensemble which has been inspiring audiences with new music for over 30 years. Numerous works have been composed for his unique set of virtuosic skills including Chris Dench's Driftglass, for percussion and ensemble, and Richard Barrett's Abglanzbeladen/ Ausinandergeschrieben. Peter regularly performs freelance with major ensembles and events. Peter has a particular commitment to both new music and chamber music, which he fosters as Head of Percussion at the Australian National Academy of Music, and previously in his former role as Head of the New Music Studio at the University of Melbourne Conservatorium of Music.
Poul Grage, Percussion
Poul appears in many guises from original contemporary jazz to street-theatre. He is currently merging hand drum techniques with drum kit in performance, utilising the Tar and Tamburello. Recent projects include ØÜ solo improvisation on drum kit with real time effects treatment and Elgar F's Calibrate The System. Performing with Jenny Game-Lopata since 1996, he featured on the Jenny Game Ensemble’s CD Jacinta’s Song (Move). Poul has along association with Michael Currie, emerging from the underground with Imogen’s Diary, Nusrat Ramble (aka Lucky Star Band) to the more recent Brechin and The Tony Lukav Three. His forays into composition gained airplay on ABC RN's The Lonely Planet, were featured on Talking Drums eponymous CD and at La Mama Theatre with playwright/performer Tee O’Neill, and supported dance duo SWACK's Best Short Work Award in the 1996 Melbourne Fringe Festival. Poul performs with percussion clowns Batacuda, the Westernport Regional Band (Community Big Band) and freelances on drums and percussion across many musical styles. Poul was a teacher and Music Coordinator at several Victorian secondary colleges for two decades.
Michael Currie, Basses
After emerging onto the improvisation scene in the 2000's with his ensemble Stir (Andrea Keller/Alain Valodze; Melbourne Jazz Co-op, SIMA), Michael left for France and studied with double bass virtuoso Francois Rabbath. He has developed a fluid and lyrical improvisation style influenced by Rabbath, Renaud Garcia-Fons and Barre Phillips. He has played with many improvising and folk musicians, including Australia tours with Peggy Van Zalm and Mal Webb. He experiments with alternative tunings to enhance the range of expression of the double bass and has worked with Melbourne luthier Ben Puglisi and Sydney luthier Matthew Tucker to this end, developing a 5-string bass (added high C) that Matthew completed in 2018. Michael has employed music in his work with aggressive children and adolescents as a psychoanalyst, for which he has won several awards (Outstanding Achievement in Research Award - PhD UON , Crime Prevention Award - NSW DoJ). He has also written two books published through Melbourne University Press and published several articles on the question of the influence of the unconscious in the appreciation of fine art.