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For Dean, who has now curated six successful festivals here, some of the magic lies in social benefits. After every concert, players and audience can mingle freely and engage in coffee-fuelled debriefing, and, for the performers and composers that this year included The Flinders Quartet, The Whitely Trio, The Southern Cross Soloists and Richard Mills, the opportunity to socialize with the patrons is rewarding.

Audience and musicians in Bangalow's Agriculture and Industry Hall
Audience and musicians in Bangalow's Agriculture and Industry Hall

Noticeably, as barriers between musicians and spectators dissolved over the course of the Festival, the audience's response to performances became increasingly warm and appreciative.

Paul Dean, director of the Bangalow Music Festival
Paul Dean, director of the Bangalow Music Festival

Thoughtfully curated by Dean, the program offered a mix of much loved chamber classics, neglected masterpieces and intriguing contemporary works. In the category of traditional favourites were works by Vivaldi, Bach, Beethoven, Mozart and Ravel, the more challenging composers on the menu included Shostakovich, Hindemith, Ligeti and Stravinsky and in the category of music composed within the last twenty five years was repertoire by Australian composers Richard Mills, Paul Stanhope and Andrew Ford.

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Copyright © 23 August 2007 Gillian Wills, Brisbane, Australia

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