Artistic Directorship: Queensland Art Song Festival
with Alex Raineri, pianist
“An excellent duo” – Limelight Magazine
Victorian soprano, Alexandra Flood, and Brisbane pianist, Alex Raineri, first began their collaboration at the 2015 Bangalow Music Festival in rural NSW where they performed a piano quintet arrangement of Richard Strauss Lieder. The two young musicians discovered a shared love of Strauss and the German Lied and formed the beginning of an exciting Australian-made partnership. Since that time, Alex and Alex have performed in many settings across Australia and internationally. Described as “appearing to have a psychic connection” by Stage Whispers, the pair is recognised for their magical synchronicity, as well as their versatility across the numerous genres and languages of the art song repertoire. Alex and Alex were the first Australian duo ever to be selected for participation in the 2018 International Hugo Wolf Art Song Competition in Stuttgart. Following this success, the duo toured to regional Victoria to appear in recital at the Port Fairy Spring Music Festival where they gave the Australian premiere of Franco Alfano’s Sette Liriche. Alex and Alex then appeared at two sold-out recitals with Opera Queensland, receiving a 4.5 star review from Limelight Magazine, and were welcome back to the company for a second recital the following year. The duo was joined by American baritone Alexander York for a dramatised performance of Hugo Wolf’s Italienisches Liederbuch at the Brisbane Music Festival. in May 2022, Alex joined Alexandra for the live final rounds of the Montreal International Music Competition, as one of 12 singers selected from across the globe.
The duo has a passion for bringing lesser-known works to Australian audiences, as well as representing Australian compositions in their programming. Raineri has personally commissioned several Australian works by composers and has performed more than 129 world- and Australian premieres.
Their repertoire includes art song by F. Schubert, R. Schumann, H. Wolf, A. von Zemlinsky, R. Strauss, H. Sommer, C. Debussy, G. Fauré, L. Boulanger, M. Ravel, G. Rossini, F. Alfano, S. Rachmaninoff, A. Dvořák, K. Szymanowski, G. Ligeti, P. Grainger, P. Glanville-Hicks, T. Adès, J. Heggie, J. Hétu and many others.
“Under Raineri’s fingers the piano tickles the ears with its own melodies, complete and individual, while Flood’s vocal maturity masterfully handles the complex operatic dynamic of their repertoire. The voice and the piano move apart, then come together, with the combination of pianistic and vocal dexterity like two brooks that flow in and out of each other on their shared journey.” – Brisbane Stage
“Not only is her voice angelic, Flood embodies the characters and emotions of the works so skilfully, you don’t need to understand the German or Italian librettos… Raineri’s piano playing is outstanding. He too puts great emotion into his interpretations of each piece. He makes what is obviously the result of hours of training and a bucketload of talent look as effortless as breathing.” – Stage Whispers
“Selections from Hugo Wolf’s Italienisches Liederbuch were given a strong performance, and it’s clear that Flood and Raineri make an excellent duo with, rapid vocal melismas being caught perfectly by Raineri.” – Limelight Magazine
See the duo’s interview at the International Hugo Wolf Competition.
Alex Raineri’s Website: alexraineri.com
For more information on the duo’s upcoming appearances, please see Schedule.
with Giulio Ferré, pianist
German-Sicilian pianist Giulio Ferré is an exciting young collaborative artist, working across many genres. He began studying piano with Martina Bauer at the age of 7 and organ at the age of 12. In 2012 he completed a degree in Church Music at the University of Music and Theatre in Munich, where he studied with Professor Harald Feller. In 2014 he commenced studies at the University of Music in Freiburg, where he gained a Bachelor in Piano Performance with Tomoko Ogasawara and Professor Eric Le Sage, followed by a Masters of Art Song (Liedgestaltung) in the class of Professor Matthias Alteheld. In October 2020 he commenced a second masters degree in Opera Coaching / Collaborative Piano under the tutelage of Professor Bernhard Epstein at the University of Performing Arts in Stuttgart. Recent performance highlights include Hugo Wolf’s entire Italienisches Lieberbuch at the Freiburg Meckehalle, a recital at the Stuttgart Italian Cultural Institute, and Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle (organ) with the Heilig-Geist-Ensemble in Günzburg.
Giulio has participated in masterclasses with Karl-Peter Kammerlander and Severin von Eckardstein among others. In 2020 he was engaged as a pianist at the Exzellenz-Labor Gesang Masterclass (now Exzellenz-Labor Oper) with Professor Hedwig Fassbender in Weikersheim, where he gained his greatest musical inspirations. He regularly appears in concert and recital alongside various artistic collaborators and works professionally as a répétiteur.
Alexandra and Giulio met at the 2020 Exzellenz-labor Gesang masterclass and immediately discovered their shared love of art song performance. In their first public appearance, Alexandra and Giulio were invited to compete in the prestigious Nadia et Lili Boulanger Art Song Competition in Paris in December 2021. The duo has been invited to complete an artist residency and recital as part of the Wellhayes Recital Prize, which Alexandra was awarded at the 2019 International Grange Festival Singing Competition. The residency and recital will take place in Devon, England in spring 2022. The duo has a particular interest in French and German classical art song.