Reviews, Interviews, and More
MIDDLE C (LINDIS TAYLOR)
11 October 2015
"She played Beethoven’s ‘Pastoral’ Sonata, in D, Op 28. It may not be one of his towering masterpieces, but in her hands it was immediately arresting and clearly the product of an intelligent and imaginative sensibility. The pace of the opening Allegro was gentle, swaying; she played the pairs of quavers in the first theme to make them and for that matter, every note, things of individual attention and interest; and her prolonged pauses at the scene changes were most effective. Her playing was clean and the staccato elegant... It was a performance that commanded attention and made you reassess the music not through any flamboyant spectacle but through her insights and illuminations."
NZ HERALD (WILLIAM DART)
14 April 2014
"Helen Bowater's Rangitoto is a piano piece of Lisztian bravura. Gemma Lee skilfully navigated gnarly textures and avalanches of octaves as well as illuminating moments of reflection."
THE LISTENER (ALEX TAYLOR)
17 April 2014
"After the terrifying surround sound of No Ordinary Sun, Rangitoto, a solo piano work by Helen Bowater, felt relatively conventional in its forces. But the piano was put through a rigorous workout by virtuoso Gemma Lee, who navigated the work’s jagged ascents with precision and vigour. At times the relentless, Sisyphean motion was exhausting on the ear, but the residues of that physical toil provided space and allowed the harmonic saturation to dissipate periodically."
NORTH SHORE TIMES (EMILY FORD)
23 November 2015
"Gemma Lee wants to break people's stigmas of opera, starting with primary school students. For the past month, Lee has been leading Opera Half Hour, a six-week programme of workshops for students. She developed it as part of her Pettman Dare Scholarship, having spent most of this year studying in Leeds at Opera North, England's national opera company."
DARE (OPERA NORTH & UNIVERSITY OF LEEDS)
"Gemma Lee, the first Pettman DARE Fellow in Music Education, completes her nine-month Scholarship period in the UK and embarks on her three months with NZ Opera and the University of Auckland, this document reflects on her activity and achievements whilst at Opera North and the University of Leeds and looks forward to her programme in New Zealand."
18 May 2012
"Cindy Tsao, Gemma Lee, Somi Kim and Judy Lee, who make up Estrella, won the highly contested Sixth Annual Pettman/Royal Overseas League Arts International Scholarship, which will take them to London in July to present a series of concerts."