A baroque harp virtuoso and research fellow from The University of Western Australia who won a Grammy Award for his work with renowned Catalan artist Jordi Savall has added a prestigious Helpmann Award to his collection of accolades.
Andrew Lawrence-King, Senior Visiting Research Fellow in the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions, hosted by UWA, and Savall won the Helpmann for Best Chamber &/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert for their critically-acclaimed collaboration at the Melbourne Recital Centre earlier this year.
The concert, held in March as part of the Great Performers Series 2013, featured pieces and improvisations from the golden age of the viola da gamba. The pair surveyed works from the height of the viol's reign, traversing Europe with pieces from the Renaissance to the Baroque.
During that Australian tour, the musicians also participated in a discussion forum with the Centre for the History of Emotions, offering insights from research they undertook for their 2011 Grammy award for Best Small Ensemble Performance for a lavish and extensive recording of Dinastia Borgia, a 500-year musical journey through the history of the Borgia family. The discussion also included the Centre's arts partner The National Gallery of Victoria and their curator Carl Villis who discovered that an anonymous portrait of a young Italian woman, purchased by the gallery in 1965, was a portrait of Lucrezia Borgia.
Dr Lawrence-King is regarded as an important figure in baroque music and one of the world's leading performers and conductors of early music. Expert in instruments including harp, organ, harpsichord and psaltery, he has led baroque operas, oratorios and chamber music at La Scala, Milan; Sydney Opera House; Casals Hall, Tokyo; Berlin Philharmonie; Vienna Konzerthaus; New York's Carnegie Hall; Moscow Philharmonie and Mexico City's Palacio de Bellas Artes.
Dr Lawrence-King is professor of Early Harp at Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London, and tutor for Early Harp & Continuo at the Royal Danish Academy of Music, Copenhagen. He is principal guest conductor of Concerto Copenhagen and directs his own ensemble, The Harp Consort.
As Senior Visiting Research Fellow in the ARC Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions, he is researching early 17th Century opera performance practices with Winthrop Professor Jane Davidson (Callaway/Tunley Chair of Music and Deputy Director of the Centre).
The Helpmann Awards, the premier awards event for Australia's live performance industry, celebrate the contribution the industry makes to the Australian community. They recognise distinguished artistic achievement and excellence across the major disciplines of the industry, including musical theatre, contemporary music, comedy, cabaret, opera, classical music, theatre, dance and physical theatre. The awards were announced on July 29.