Concert: Sterling Connections, Stirring Affections

A concert of Sunway University’s School of Arts in collaboration with the Euroasia Association of Performing Arts with guest cellist Heleen Du Plessis
Visiting cellist Heleen du Plessis’s playing has been described as an “earnest emotive colour traversing a glorious pathway direct from the heart to the fingers”. She joins Matthew Marshall, one of New Zealand’s leading classical guitarists, violist Andrew Filmer and violinist/pianist Angel Lee for a concert that promises vibrancy, variety, and a celebration of international collaborations.

Read more about these musicians!

  • Heleen Du Plessis
  • Matthew Marshall
  • Andrew Filmer
  • Angel Lee, STM
Heleen du Plessis

Heleen du Plessis is an international cello soloist and chamber musician with four postgraduate qualifications from the Conservatory of Geneva, Peabody Institute USA, and the University of Otago New Zealand. Her playing has been described as “earnest emotive colour traversing a glorious pathway direct from the heart to the fingers” (Otago Daily Times). Her CD Cello for Africa, nominated for the International Listener’s Choice Award, was described as, “embodying the highest standard of artistry”. A prestigious Chamber Music New Zealand tour in 2019 with marimba virtuoso Yoshiko Tsuruta drew full audiences, standing ovations and elicited commendable reviews countrywide: ranking her playing “as one of the best” and “Chamber Music of the highest standard” (River City Press), “one of New Zealand’s top cellists” (Wanaka Sun), “with extraordinary technical facility” and “exceptional richness of sound and a wide range of textures” (Rotorua Daily Post).

A recent concerto performance with the Dunedin Symphony Orchestra received a standing ovation, described as “sublime, with intense richness and passion with every stroke” (Otago Daily Times).

Heleen is senior lecturer in cello and music pedagogy at the University of Otago, Director of Cellists of Otago and principal cellist of the Dunedin Symphony Orchestra.

Matthew Marshall

In a performing career spanning nearly 40 years, Matthew Marshall has given over 2000 performances throughout Europe, Asia, Pacific Islands, America, Australasia, and from Iceland to Siberia to Easter Island! He has performed as soloist with the Berlin Chamber Orchestra, the Orlando Philharmonic (USA), the Kemerovo Philharmonic (Russia) the Guanajuato Symphony (Mexico), and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and many others.

As a recording artist, Matthew features on thirteen albums for solo guitar, chamber ensembles and with orchestra (alongside the Kronos Quartet, the NZ String Quartet, NZ Symphony Orchestra, and others). His fourth solo album “Fragments” was a finalist in the Best Classical Artist category of the 2020 New Zealand Music Awards.

Sought after as a teacher, since 1991 Matthew has held teaching positions at Universities and Colleges in four countries, and given masterclasses on four continents, including at the Conservatorio Nacional de Mexico, the Gnessin Academy Moscow, Mannes College New York, Liaoning University China and at Festivals in Australia, New Zealand, UK, Mexico and Malaysia.

Andrew Filmer

Malaysian violist and musicologist Dr Andrew Filmer is an associate professor at Sunway University in Malaysia and performs in the Sutera Ensemble and the Anjung Trio. He holds a PhD from the University of Otago, and a master’s in viola performance from Indiana University South Bend. He is versatile in the arts, combining his musicology training with that of viola performance and a passion for teaching. Andrew has won commendations and prizes in teaching, public speaking, research, performance and leadership.

He has conducted the Selangor Symphony Orchestra, Ensemble Virama, the KLPAC String Ensemble, and Musica Sinfonietta Penang, and narrated for the Selangor Symphony and The Songweavers. As a violist, he has performed concertos in New Zealand, US, UK, and Malaysia and is slated to be a Festival Artist at the International Viola Congress in Thailand in 2023.

Andrew is a past Editor of the Journal of the American Viola Society and is a consultant for the Australia and New Zealand Viola Society. His research has been presented twice at the University of Cambridge, three times at International Viola Congresses and has been published internationally. He has facilitated string pedagogy workshops for Trinity College London and the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM), and he was part of a three-person team that constructed the first harpsichord built in Malaysia.

Angel Lee, STM

Taiwan-born violinist and pianist Angel Lee is the founder of the Euroasia Association of Performing Arts, an association that has established ties with international organisations and is currently the leading platform for recognising and developing musical talent in the country over the past decade. She has also been on the panel of music examiners for Trinity College London since 2011.

Angel graduated with a honours degree from Australia under the Melbourne University International Undergraduate Scholarship, to which she has added seven diplomas.

Having dedicated more than two decades to the development of music education in Malaysia. In the early part of her career, Angel focused on the nurturing of young talents and have trained numerous young musicians and established ensembles whom have performed and won prizes both locally internationally.With expertise not only in early education, Angel has held teaching positions and been on the panel of examiners at the University of Malaya, the Malaysian Institute of Art, and the National Arts Academy. She is also the violinist of the Sutera Ensemble, a piano quartet that has performed across Malaysia and in Cambodia.

In 2014, Angel was bestowed with the Setiawan Tuanku Muhriz (STM) medal by the Royal Family of Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia for her contributions towards music and the arts and recently in 2022, Angel was recipient of the JCI Ten Outstanding Young Malaysians Award.