Festival organfest

DATE corrected to Monday, June 5, starting at 10.30am.  A  MUSICAL performance in each of Fremantle’s churches over one day will be a four-course feast for the ears, says organist Dominic Perissinotto.

He says it’s a rare chance to compare the unique tone of each organ in the heritage-listed churches.

Perissinotto’s impassioned playing will be supported by mezzo soprano Eva-Marie Middleton, violoncellist Louise McKay and violinist Margaret Blades.

“The same group will be doing different pieces on different organs,” Perissinotto says, noting the architecture in each church can dramatically alter the sound.

• Eva-Marie Middleton, Dominic Perissinotto, Louise McKay and Margaret Blades. Photo by Nik Babic


“They all do things very nicely, but in different ways and the acoustics are very different.”

The organ at St John’s Anglican Church in Kings Square dates back to 1880 and has a large rich sound, while the organ at Wesley Church on Market Street was built in 1860 in Ballarat, and shipped to Fremantle in 1902.

St Patricks Basilica has two organs: one “quite large”, while the other built in 1990 is “enormous”.

The organ at Scots Presbyterian Church was installed in 1897 and Perissinotto says its acoustics are ideal for Beethoven, Berlioz and a violin sonata by Handel.

“The 150 seat Scots’ is more intimate…you are not going to have to put your fingers in your ears,” he says.

All the stops will be pulled out for the final show at St Pat’s, as Perissinotto goes all Keith Emerson on WA’s largest pipe organ.

“Which I will play with everything!” he warns.

Perissinotto hopes audiences will attend all four shows on June 5, kicking off at St John’s at 10.30 am and concluding at St Pat’s at 3.30pm.

The Pipe Organ Plus concert is part of the Fremantle Heritage Festival, which is on until June 4.

Tickets and details at trybooking.com/OODY


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