Pereira pleases Mrs Macquarie – and Bathurst

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FORMER “CityNews” Artist of the Year, the cellist David Pereira, has composed a piece of music which will make its world premiere at a bicentenary concert in Bathurst this Wednesday April 29 in Bathurst.

MOS93/2-1 Violoncello. Cello with some modern repairs together with bow, 16 minor spare items contained in wooden carry case. It is believed that this cello belonged to Elizabeth Henrietta Macquarie, who lived in New South Wales during her husband's governorship from 1810 - 1822. Before leaving the colony and returning to England in February 1822, Mrs Macquarie gave the violoncello to her friends Captain John Piper and his wife with a note saying that she hoped it would 'sound well' in their Point Piper residence Henrietta Villa (which they had previously named in Mrs Macquarie's honour). The Pipers frequently hosted large parties and banquets and their home was considered the focus of fashionable (if not always respectable) society in the colony. For full detail on this object refer to Collections Management Unit Vernon Database.
Mrs Macquarie’s cello

In 2015 Bathurst is celebrating 200 years since Governor Lachlan Macquarie proclaimed Bathurst Australia’s first inland European settlement on May 7 1815 and the Mayor of Bathurst Cr Gary Rush said the concert would celebrate the history of Bathurst in music.

At the Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre on Wednesday, Pereira will play the piece on a 200 year old cello believed to have belonged to Mrs Elizabeth Macquarie, wife of Governor Lachlan Macquarie.


In the concert, titled, “Remembering Mrs Macquarie – bringing her Cello home”, Pereira will join with the Bathurst Chamber Orchestra.

The concert is to open with a performance of Peter Sculthorpe’s composition, “Remembering Mrs Macquarie” followed by a performance of Pereira’s piece “Old Man Emu at Flat Rock (Meditation on Water, Wind and Rock)”.

David Pereira said a meeting with local Wiradjuri elder Bill Allen Jnr, and a visit to Flat Rock on the Fish River provided the inspiration for the piece.

“Bill brought to my attention certain of his people’s cultural artefacts and spiritual life. And we quickly were friends. Meanwhile, with cello in hand and with him alongside me I found sounds and feelings that I knew were seeds of a piece of music,” he added, describing his composition as “ a homage to Country and a simple but true offering to an ongoing Reconciliation.”

A focus of the bicentenary celebrations is Bathurst’s annual Heritage Week which commences this Sunday, May 2, with a program of events, tours and exhibitions highlighting Bathurst’s heritage and for the first time ever an outdoor illumination and street festival, information at

“Remembering Mrs Macquarie – bringing her Cello home”, at Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre, Wednesday, 29 April 29 at 7.30pm. Tickets available from the Box Office at BMEC or at the door.

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Helen Musa
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