Ensemble Vinifera – Ellie Brinch, John Lewis and Andrew Wilson

The myth of ‘no female composers’ will be exploded – in style! – in a wonderful winter afternoon concert on Sunday 30 July  when Ensemble Vinifera makes its appearance in the popular Prelude in Tea series at the Independent Theatre, North Sydney.

The monthly concerts featuring outstanding chamber musicians include refreshments – and a delectable selection of cakes!

“Why are there so few female composers?” It’s a question that resurfaces regularly and yet, there are in fact many first-rate female composers;  this concert will feature works from several, spanning the early 19th century through to the present day.  The feature work is Ensemble Vinifera’s first commissioned work from Sydney composer Jessica Wells.

Vinifera will also be performing works by contemporary American composer Libby Larsen as well as Nadia Boulanger, Rebecca Clarke,  Clara Schumann (student and wife of Robert) and Fanny Mendelssohn-Hensel (brother of Felix and considered a child prodigy of similar stature).

Ensemble Vinifera features Andrew Wilson (cello), Ella Brinch (viola) and John Lewis (clarinet).  The group was created in 2013 by several Sydney musicians who regularly perform together in the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra.

Based around i ts core group, Vinifera metamorphoses as required to perform anything from solo Bach to octets for mixed winds and strings.  The ensemble is inherently flexible, playing music from a wide variety of eras, genres and  national backgrounds across a broad palette of instrumental combinations.

The musicians particularly enjoy bringing less frequently seen groupings, composers and works to Australian audiences.  The founding members have studied and performed throughout Australia, the UK, Europe and North America  covering the broad spectrum of chamber, symphonic and operatic repertoire.

As well as a love for great music, the ensemble members share a love for good food and wine  in the company of good friends – hence their choice of name!

Guest artists for the concert will include Christina Wilson (mezzo-soprano), Ewan Foster (violin), Lisa Osmialowski (flute) and Azumi Lehmann (harp) with Alan Hicks (piano).


Ensemble Vinifera’s THE FEMALE OF THE SPECIES will play the Independent Theatre, 269 Miller Street, North Sydney on Sunday 30 July from 2.30 (afternoon tea) for a 3.30 pm concert.

Sydney Arts Guide has one double pass to offer- editor.sydneyartsguide@gmail.com The winner will be advised by email.