Chamber Fusion: Music plus...

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The 2017 Cook & Co. series: CONNECTIONS

Connection 2  Suite Life (July 25)

cellist - Josephine Vains / actor - Leah Filley

Supporting artists (voice only): Julie Nihill & Julie Houghton

Exploring the narrative embedded in Bach's cello suites, Cook & Co continues to break the mould. In addition to the glorious music, ranging from the much loved Prelude in G to the jubilant Gigue in D, a series of dramatic vignettes provides glimpses into the life of an aspiring musician, Dulcie.  We meet Dulcie as she returns from study in Europe, moves into a bedsit above an inner-Melbourne shop and endeavours to establish a career as a professional musician.  

  • Venue: Clifton Arts Precinct, 304-314 Church Street, Richmond, 3121. 
  • Time: 7:30pm performance followed by complimentary refreshments in the precinct Gallery. 
  • Transport: tram route 75 or 78 / free street parking from 5pm. 
  • Tickets are on sale now at: Tickets *Early bird and series discounts are available.

Josephine Vains is an Australian cellist, chamber musician and educator who has performed on concert stages throughout Europe, North America, Asia and the Caribbean. Currently a member of Firebird Trio, Accademia Arcadia, Australia Octet and Kammermusik, she has played with Trio 3.0.3, Freshwater Trio, Melba Quartet and on radio for ABC FM, 3MBS, DRS1 (Switzerland), NDR (Germany) and CBC (Canada). Josephine's love of music permeates her teaching at the VCA Secondary School, University of Melbourne and Monash University. Her musical life also extends to examining, blogging, reviewing and curating concerts. Josephine performs on a Thomas Kennedy Cello, London 1850 and a John Devereaux Cello, Fitzroy 1864.


Leah Filley (EMC) grew up in Melbourne, Australia. She holds a BFA degree majoring in Film and Theater Studies from the University of Melbourne, an MFA in Acting from The Actors Studio Drama School at Pace University, New York City and a Graduate Apprenticeship from The CRY HAVOC Company. She was part of a year long tour with National Players, Tour 65, America’s longest running touring company, performing in Macbeth (playing Lady Macbeth’), Comedy of Errors and The Odyssey. Leah has appeared as Miranda in The Tempest at Olney Theatre Centre in Maryland and Goneril in the feature film of King Lear. WE ARE ROM3, a short film adaptation of Julius Caesar that she co-wrote with Drew Feldman is complete and has so far been officially selected for four film festivals. Leah is now back in Melbourne and just completed a sold out run of an all-female Julius Caesar. 


Connection 1  Shakespeare: Master of Meter (April 27)

Reviewers' comments:  "UNUSUAL & INTRIQUING"



Connection 3  In the Manner of Austen (October 17)

Jane Austen's world of Regency music, manners and wit.

Featuring: actor - Julie Nihill; harpist - Alannah Guthrie-Jones; pianist - Janis Cook









Cook & Co. visit the Diamond Valley

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Tchaikovsky Romance DC

2 pm, Saturday, September 24, 2016

Diamond Creek Uniting Church, Wensley Street (Melway 12, B6)

Treat yourself to a day away from the hustle and bustle of the city - head for the Yarra and Diamond Valleys. Take in the wineries, the galleries, the cafes, the bush and maybe a mob of kangaroos; then swing by Diamond Creek after lunch for Cook & Co's luscious Tchaikovsky Romance program. Contact: Graham - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 0419 361 487

Here's what was posted by the Canberra Critic's Circle after Cook & Co's Tchaikovsky performance in Canberra last June:

"The program of songs and music was cleverly arranged, starting from the joy and innocence of young love, through the pain of parting from a lover and the continual striving for happiness through love. Soprano, Rada Tochalna, ... dispayed not only her fine voice but also her strong acting ability... One of the highlights of the concert was Lucas De Jong singing Why? ...  Janis Cook played two piano solos superbly..."

See the full text at

Not only will you hear Rada, Lucas and Janis, but as a special treat on September 24, you can relish the sumptuous strains of Tchaikovsky's Andante cantabile performed by Joanna Tidy. 




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Rada Lucas Copy


Cook & Co. is preparing for an all Tchaikowsky concert in Canberra on June 19. See the Art Song Canberra website for details:

Soprano, Rada Tochalna and baritone, Lucas de Jong are pictured during rehearsals. 


Cook & Co. in Richmond, May 29

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Sunshine Shadow poster

Interwoven with stories and poetry, narrated by the popular actress, Julie Nihill, Janis has curated a unique performance featuring music by French and British composers with MSO principals Andrew Macleod and Brock Imison on woodwind and herself at the keys of the beautiful Schimmel grand.

This engaging program will be presented at Richmond Uniting Church, 314 Church Street, Richmond on Sunday, May 29 at 3pm. 

After the concert, share complimentary wine and nibbles with the performers and special guest, Bernard Blestel, author of Islands of Sunshine and Shadow.

Book now at 

or enquire to 0428480743.

The Dancers' Company on tour

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A short contract as Company Pianist for the Australian Ballet's Dancers' Company tour has been quite a trip: live theatre, talented performers, a great behind the scenes team, 12 friendly country towns in six weeks and long hours on the bus. Here we are in Tamworth in front of the Golden Guitar: 

Renowned for fine musicians and creative artistry, Cook & Co concerts are tailored events which have become popular with those who enjoy inspiring music in a relaxed format.