George Golvan QC is a founding member of Legal Friends of Melbourne Recital Centre. Here George shares why he and his wife Naomi choose to support the Centre’s Great Performers series.
As soon as the Centre started 10 years ago, Naomi and I were very excited. We subscribed to as many series being presented at the Centre as we possibly could, including the Great Performers series, Musica Viva, and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra’s Recital Centre series.
It was an initiative of fellow barrister Meredith Schilling. I had conversations with her and Peter Murdoch QC, and we all felt that it was a good opportunity to encourage members of the legal profession to become supporters of the Centre.
Not all the necessary funding for the Centre’s music program can be obtained from government and box office. Our principle aim was to get the legal profession involved and excited to sponsor special projects involving the brilliant international artists of the Centre’s Great Performers series.
It has been a success, with the Great Performers series now well-attended and well-established, attracting international artists at the peak of their careers. The group has been directly involved in making possible memorable ‘mini-festivals’ by tenor Florian Boesch and pianist Malcolm Martineau, and cellist Pieter Wispelwey.
Melbourne audiences are sophisticated; they’re knowledgeable, they expect the best and are prepared to give support when the Centre delivers. Naomi and I consider the Centre one of the finest performing venues for recitals and concerts in the world. It’s now developed a world reputation. The very best artists are aware of the facility. They are aware of the acoustics. They want to perform here. If the Centre is to prosper and satisfy the needs of its sophisticated Melbourne audience, then it must engage the best artists.
One of the reasons why I’ve been involved philanthropically is because whatever I give by way of contributions toward the Centre, I certainly gain back more in pleasure.
It’s been a wonderful source of pleasure for me to see these magnificent performances in this auditorium. I appreciate that they can’t happen without individual support. Unless you make the contribution, unless you make the effort, the kind of performances we’re having, we’ve had, and I know we’re going to have in the future just won’t take place. My message is that it doesn’t matter what you donate, you get more out of it than what you give!
Melbourne Recital Centre’s Giving Circles are groups of like-minded music lovers in our community who come together to made a deeper impact on specific projects and programs here at the Centre. Donors to the Centre’s Music Circle support the depth and vibrancy of the Centre’s musical program. Donors like George play a crucial role in ensuring that we can continue to present a rich diversity of the greatest musicians and ensembles from Australia and around the globe.
With around 600 concerts at the Centre each year, Melbourne audiences are treated to diverse music by local, national and international artists in the best place to hear. The beautiful acoustic and warm intimacy of both performance spaces at the Centre – the Primrose Potter Salon, and Elisabeth Murdoch Hall – make these experiences even more profound and unforgettable!