| Share

Recreating the early 6th Century! Period Instruments. Baroque Music. Incredible Cast. Mock Sword Fights. A unique night of music under the stars.

Medieval magic in Sydney as young Australian musicians perform a unique outdoor Operatta - University of Sydney Friday 9 April 2021

Sydney musician Jack Stephens, 25, is both the Producer and Director of tomorrow's unique outdoor performance of Purcell’s Operetta King Arthur within the grounds of Australia’s oldest University College.

He is also singing one of the Bass parts and even working with the cast to pull together costumes to support the production. 

Currently working to complete his Doctorate of Music from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Jack is the principal lay-clerk and Choir Tutor at St Andrew’s Cathedral and is used to singing and playing great music, having worked extensively within choral music and as a soloist.  He is also an accomplished brass player, having recently performed as a soloist in Schumann’s Konzertstück (Concerto for Four Horns) alongside Robert Johnson (Principal Horn of Sydney Symphony Orchestra).

As part of his studies, he is the driving force behind this one off concert performance being performed at the University of Sydney this Friday.

  • Purcell’s Operetta King Arthur 

  • Hailed as one of the greatest works of western music

  • Tells the story of King Arthur’s Britons as they battle the Saxons.

  • Medieval re-enactment society performing mock fight scenes at the interval

  • Unique one-off event - 7:00pm, Friday 9 April

  • Semi-staged in the open-air Quadrangle of St Paul's College - Australia’s oldest University College within the University of Sydney 

The event promises to transport the audience back to the early 6th Century- taking them on a tale of medieval adventure and mysticism.  A local medieval re-enactment society is even planning to add some additional colour at the interval, performing some energetic mock fights scenes!

“This is a real cross-generational event – seasoned professionals will be pairing up with some of Australia’s best young musicians - including Soloists from Pinchgut Opera, Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, Sydney Symphony,Opera Australia and the Song Company, “ said Jack. 

In performing this extra-ordinary event, I have the privilege of working with some incredible performers including the legendary Peter Cousens, Artistic Director of the Talent Development Project Foundation, who will be narrating our version of the operetta. 

“We also have some amazing soloists – all backed by an 18 period piece  orchestra,” he said.

One of those soloists is the talented Chloe Lankshear, currently Principal Soloist with Pinchgut Opera, Australian Brandenburg Orchestra and the Song Company.

“A highlight on Friday will be Chloe singing ‘Fairest Isle’  - one of the most loved songs throughout the world.  

I invite anyone who will be in Sydney who loves classical music to secure some of the limited tickets, grab their picnic rug, bring along some food and drinks, and be transported to medieval times and be immersed in this great sounding tale of King Arthur,” said Jack.


Peter Cousens, Jack Stephens and Chloe Lankshear are available for interview this week.

NOTE: Some of the cast in costume can be arranged.


Purcell’s Operetta King Arthur 

When: Friday April 9 at 7pm

Where: Quadrangle, St Paul's College, University of Sydney, 9 City Rd, Camperdown, NSW 2050

Cost: $40-$60

Tickets: tinyurl.com/kingpurcell


Conductor | Ross Cobb

Concertmaster | Fiona Ziegler

Narrator | Peter Cousens

Soprano | Chloe Lankshear, Josie Ryan, Elise Morton

Mezzo soprano | Stephanie Dillon, Hester Wright

Tenor | Joshua Oxley, Elias Wilson

Bass | Jeremy Boulton, Jack Stephens

Violin | Fiona Ziegler, James Tarbotton

Viola | Sophie Nickel

Cello | Zoltán Szabo

Bass | Will Hansen

Harpsichord | Nathan Cox

Bassoon | Harley Milano

Oboe | Edward Wang, Joshua Ning

Recorder | Isabelle Palmer, Aimee Brown

Trumpet | Simon Wolnizer, Jonathan Baker

Timpani | Adam Cooper-Stanbury