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Review: Marimba Miniatures
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Flash by Claire Edwardes

Edwardes, a familiar sight on Sydney stages when called upon by the ACO, Sydney Symphony and Australian World orchestras, is a regular performer with the innovative new music group Ensemble Offspring, but she started her musical life learning piano.

All those lessons paid off later when she forsook the 10 fingers needed for the piano for the four hammers she uses on the marimba, which is laid out like a giant keyboard.

This album mixes skilful adaptations of some of those piano pieces she studied in her teens - from Bach to Shostakovich, Bartok to Schumann and Tchaikovsky - with some contemporary Australian pieces, many of them written specifically for Edwardes, and a charming dash of jazz great Chick Corea’s Children’s Songs.

This is a truly entertaining CD and one that will surprise many listeners who may have thought this instrument lacked variety.

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