Young musicians to honour Sitsky

Share Canberra's trusted news:

CANBERRA Youth Orchestra is lashing out on October 31 with a big 80th birthday concert for its patron, Larry Sitsky, one of our most eminent composers.


Artistic director of the orchestra, Rowan Harvey Martin, will be conducting Sitsky’s “Concerto for Orchestra”, written in 1984 for the Sydney Symphony.

In fact the concerto is a completion and realisation of “Fantasia Contrappuntistica, by Ferruccio Busoni, the subject of Sitsky’s research and practice for many years.

The “Fantasia Contrappuntistica” in turn was various versions of Busoni’s realisation of a fragment of the last fugue from “The Art of Fugue” left unfinished by JS Bach.

Busoni and he completed a number of versions of his reconstruction of Bach’s fugue using ‘Bachian’ techniques, with the idea of combining all, but he did not live to complete this work.

Sitsky took on the task of combining various editions, excerpts and hints given by Busoni for orchestral colour; occasionally departing from Busoni. This is the perfect work to showcase the skills of CYO’s young artists.

Also on the program will be Australian pianist and champion of Sitsky’s music (and the brother of the conductor) Michael Kieran Harvey, who will perform excerpts from “Dimensions of Night,” written for him by Sitsky; Nigel Westlake’s “Antarctica” Suite for Guitar and Orchestra with soloist Ciaran Edwards-McKeown; and compositions by two of Sitsky’s students.

Sitsky will be attending this concert and as we can’t resist saying in this birthday year, is very likely to be “Happy as Larry,”

Canberra Youth Orchestra, the ANU Chamber Orchestra and guest soloists present an 80th Birthday Concert for Larry Sitsky, at Llewellyn Hall, 7.30pm, Friday 31 October, bookings to or 6247 4714 or

Who Can You Trust?

In a world beleaguered by spin and confused messages, there's never been more need for diverse, trustworthy, independent journalism in Canberra.

Who can you trust? Well, for more than 25 years, "CityNews" has proudly been an independent, free, family-owned news magazine, serving the national capital with quality, integrity and authority. Through our weekly magazine and daily through our digital platforms, we constantly and reliably deliver high-quality and diverse opinion, news, arts, socials and lifestyle columns.

If you trust our work online and believe in the power of independent voices, I encourage you to make a small contribution.

Every dollar of support will be invested back into our journalism so we can continue to provide a valuably different view of what's happening around you and keep free.

Click here to make your donation and you will be supporting the future of journalism and media diversity in the ACT.

Thank you,

Ian Meikle, editor

Previous articleWoman mugged in Reid
Next articleAlex Stuart’s jazz – ‘the place to be’
Helen Musa
“CityNews” arts editor

Leave a Reply