Chapter Two – The Three Futurists

Sat 23 Aug 7pm; Sun 24 August 2pm
Belconnen Arts Centre

Science – Do you believe? Can you have faith? The Griffyn Ensemble and choreographer Liz Lea will take you on an epic journey evoking mechanical progress, ancient prophecy, and an Orwellian future, to ask the question – who do you trust?

The Griffyn Ensemble’s annual National Science Week program features music by George Antheil, Jacob Tel Veldhuis, Ancient Greek poets, Radiohead, and Richard Rodgers/Oscar Hammerstein. What better way to celebrate National Science Week than to ask the fundamental question:

Do you believe?

(For tickets and memberships, click here)

(see map below)
118 Emu Bank
Belconnen ACT 2615

On street parking, and at the adjacent Westfields.

Supported by ACT Government


Michael Sollis

As director of Griffyn, Michael has an incredible knack for applying his passion for pretty much anything (and everything) to musical form: From Rugby League to astronomy; Melanesian society to American popular culture; and economic theory to his home town of Canberra.  It will thus be of little surprise that Michael’s background is in composition (with works performed by ensembles across Australia and the world) and anthropology (a published researcher in the interdisciplinary area of composition-anthropologist-linguistics). You will also see Michael play a host of plucked string instruments in a Griffyn concert (bouzoukis, mandolins, guitars), as well as Griffyn performing many of his own compositions.

Michael has lectured in tertiary composition at the Australian National University School of Music, and has made presentations on youth musical advocacy in places as far flung as Jinan (China), Istanbul (Turkey), and Tallinn (Estonia).  The local Rugby League community is also a big part of Michael’s life, having played and coached for the Gungahlin Bulls in the Canberra Raiders Cup.  You can find out more about Michael’s music and activity at his website here.  Michael is also Artistic Director, Education for Musica Viva Australia.

Meriel Owen

You may not get a chance to see Meriel on horseback riding through the Molonglo valley (blink and you will miss her – fast as lightning!), but you will undoubtedly see Meriel perform in concert halls around Australia on harp and piano. Unfortunately, Meriel hasn’t yet worked out how to marry her two passions – equestrian sports and performance. We are working on it, however, and when we finish our saddle-mounted harp prototype we will let you all know! Since returning to Canberra in 2006 after a decade in the USA (where she performed across America and completed a Master of Theology), Meriel has performed with pretty much every Symphony Orchestra in Australia, and maintains a busy schedule as a freelance harpist. Since pianos are a little too tricky to pack in the Grus (the Griffyn Bus), Meriel will usually be seen on harp in a Griffyn concert. Meriel also has two beautiful children who are in-training for the Griffyn: Next Generation TV Series, with solo ukulele featured!

Kiri Sollis

The concert flute was never going to be enough for Kiri, so you will often see her play piccolo, alto flute, bass flute, and a suite of recorders during a Griffyn program. If you ask her though, she will tell you that the piccolo is her favourite, which has prompted her husband Michael to expand the repertoire for new works for piccolo, including the 2010 Perelandra Piccolo Concerto which was written for Kiri.  Kiri has also performed the world premiere of a new version of David Bedford’s Recorder Concerto, and the Australian premiere of Urmas Sisask’s flute concerto. Kiri hails from the South Coast of New South Wales and has been living in Canberra since 2005 with her husband Michael and dog Gypsy. She maintains an active teaching studio, and has performed and recorded with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra.

Kiri is also Griffyn’s designated stunt woman. This has included performing daring feats such as braving sub zero temperatures in the middle of Lake George, and being handcuffed in heavy chains – all in the name of art (or at least an interesting promo photoshoot experience!)