Sunday 12 November at 2pm
Matthias Schlubeck – pan flute
Joachim Neugart – piano and organ
There is no better way to spend a sunny Spring afternoon than soaking up the glorious music of pan flute and pipe organ within the historic surrounds of St John’s Anglican Church in Flinders.
St John’s Flinders is a well-known venue hosting the annual Peninsula Summer Music Festival in January and attracts world-class musicians throughout the rest of the year. The most recent concert at St John’s brought musicians Matthias Schlubeck and Joachim Neugart all the way from Germany for a five-concert tour throughout Australia. Neugart is currently the choirmaster at the Basilica of St Quirinus in Neuss. Schlubeck is one of the world’s leading pan flutists, having graduated with distinction from the highest degree in music at the Music College in Wuppertal, launching his career as a world-renowned soloist and recording artist.
Schlubeck delighted and amazed Flinders audiences with baroque and classical repertoire beautifully adapted and played on pan flute, accompanied by Neugart on the Bechstein grand piano and William Anderson 1874 pipe organ. Many of the works were originally written for oboe (Albinoni’s Concerto Op. 9 No. 2), flute (Mozart’s Andante from Concerto in D and Rutter’s Suite Antique) and choir (Rheinberger’s Abendlied), and yet Schlubeck was able to play each and every note of these complex and demanding works with great virtuosity, artistry and finesse.
Schlubeck’s self-composed work Deep Colours, written specifically for pan flute, explored special sounds and colours not overtly shown in the classical pieces, including flutter tonguing (rolling the tongue whilst blowing to create a unique vibration through the tone of a note) and resonant tonal ‘pops’ made with the open mouth cavity to create a kind of pizzicato (the sound that stringed instruments make when they pluck a string).
Accompanying Schlubeck on the grand piano with seemingly effortless musical flair, Joachim Neugart also brought the church pipe organ to life with two virtuosic solos, Louis Vierne Carillon de Longpont and Johann Sebastian Bach Toccata in D Minor.
Together Schlubeck and Neugart made a vibrant team that was a pleasure to witness. Apart from the magical virtuosity and skill of these two musicians together, what truly captured the audience’s heart was Schlubeck’s personable nature, sense of humour and passion for the pan flute. These qualities enabled him to further engage with the audience through the music itself and also by explaining some of the principles of pan flute playing, saying a few words about the history of the instrument and making people laugh with the occasional musical joke.
After the concert, Schlubeck was genuinely pleased to discuss his artform with those lingering in the church. Schlubeck shared the story of how and why he began playing the pan flute. He spoke of how, at the age of 5, when the other school children were learning the recorder, his primary school teacher found a pan flute and began learning how to play it so that he could teach Schlubeck. Because Schlubeck was born without hands and forearms, it was an instrument that he could play. It is remarkable to think that if Schlubeck had been born with arms like most others, he may never have had the opportunity and impetus to pursue playing the pan flute, developing into the musical wonder he is today. It is a blessing to have met him and experienced the magic of his fine music. Matthias Schlubeck is truly an inspiration.
Visit these websites for more information:
Matthias Schlubeck – schlubeck.com
Peninsula Summer Music Festival – peninsulafestival.com.au
Thank you to Bendigo Bank who kindly supported this event