Bill Hawkey to host ‘thank-you recital’ at All Saints

Well-known and much loved local musician Bill Hawkey will present a free Twilight Concert on Wednesday, November 22, appropriately on the date given to St Cecilia, Patron Saint of Music. 

This free concert has two purposes: firstly to celebrate Bill’s 85th birthday in January of this year, and secondly as a means of thanking local and regional music lovers for the support they have given Bill and his wife Elizabeth in all their endeavours of the past 15 years to bring classical music to the Narooma region.

Bill retired as Director of the Canberra School of Music in 1998 and in 1999 moved to Akolele – to farm , fish and read but within two years his involvement in the music life of the region began. 

In 2002 he became Music Director and Accompanist of the Montague Choristers, a post he held for the next 11 years, for five of those he also directed the Nomads Singers of Merimbula. 

With his combined choirs he was able to introduce oratorios such as “Creation” and “Elijah” drawing on soloists from Canberra and the Opera Workshop at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, and those from within the choirs in Gilbert and Sullivan’s “Mikado”, “The Gondoliers” and “Trial by Jury”.

Alongside the choral activities, with the backing of the Montague Choristers, Bill intoduced the Visiting Artists Concert Series.

However first he needed the support of the wider community in order to purchase a quality grand piano to attract musicians of national and international standing. 

The money was raised in two years by selling the keys of a wooden replica keyboard and by the proceeds of another of Bill’s recitals. 

A third initiative was the Twilight Recital Series – shorter concerts showcasing local artists and set at a time that allowed audience members to return home for their evening meal.

As always Bill has chosen a program with his audience in mind with appealing works by Bach, Brahms, Chopin, Haydn, Mozart, Parry, and Schubert. Admission is free.

The concert starts at 5.30pm at All Saints church, Bodalla. Enquiries to 4473 7541.