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Songmakers Australia

A Q&A with Andrea Katz from Songmakers Australia

What is your goal/s for your Local Heroes series in 2016?
We are celebrating our fifth year of great music making with the addition of a new Songmaker, internationally acclaimed tenor Andrew Goodwin.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Brahms on the radio, a loaf of bread in the oven and a dog at my feet.

What do you think about when you perform live?
Telling a story to the audience.

Which historical figure do you most identify with and why?
I don't hero-worship anymore but all my life I've been influenced by great writers with a strong idealistic stand such as Hermann Hesse, Romain Rolland and Albert Schwitzer.

Where is your favourite place on Earth and why?
I have a strange attraction for octagonal buildings so I'll have to name two - Rome and her Castel Sant'Angelo and Jerusalem and the Dome of the Rock.

If you could swap places with any other human or animal who or what would you choose and why?
I recently saw a video of a panda playing with snow for the first time. Not a bad swap I'd say!

Who is your ideal audience?
People that are open and receptive enough to accept new ideas, even with old music.

What colours speak to you? Have you ever experienced synaesthesia? 
Any shade of purple. I have perfect pitch...all I hear are the names of each sound!

Which living person do you most admire and why?
Daniel Barenboim has managed to find a balance between career and social and political commitment in almost a Renaissance way. Today artists have separate avenues of expression for their craft and their views but he uses his art as a bridge, a tool to promote better understanding between otherwise contrary people.

What is your favourite book and why?
The Glass Bead Game by Hermann Hesse. I read it when I was 14 and it not only changed my life but gave me one of the best piano lessons I have ever had.

What is your favourite piece of music and why?
Anything by Brahms but if I have to choose only one his Symphony No.4.  Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde comes a very close second.

How did you come to play your instrument/s?
A bit by accident. Everyone in my family plays either string or woodwind. When I was 7, my parents rented a large apartment that came with a piano the owner couldn't move. I was asked by my father if I'd like to play it and that was it. I learnt to read music before I could read words.

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