Fremantle Festival’s showstopper concert series wowed audiences with its scale, ambition and stunning execution.

Spanning over twenty-four hours and four unique Fremantle locations, A Single Day took the audience on an inspiring journey through four hour-long musical concerts. From sunrise to sunset, each musical accompaniment responded to the changing light in each individual setting.

Beginning at 11:30pm the first concert took place in the impressive and vast Fremantle Prison. The dimly lit room was flanked on either side by prisoner’s cells, with the only source of light coming from the two pianos in the centre of the space. The audience was treated to a dark, intense and powerful piano performance, which echoed throughout the chambers of the prison.

Less than five hours later, the second performance – percussion works led by Louise Devenish – began at South Mole Lighthouse. Pitch dark slowly turned to dazzling light as the sun rose above Fremantle, with the rhythmic percussion a relaxing accompaniment to the sea breeze and waves in the background.

12 hours after the start of the series at 11:30am,The Carolyn Tannock Courtyard of Notre Dame University was the third location for A Single Day. A brass band led by Josh Davies filled the courtyard with a programme of contemporary classical music featuring pieces from Carmen and West Side Story. With the sun beaming down, this energetic and upbeat concert characterised the optimism of the coming day.

With the sun setting over Fremantle that evening, pieces from Vaughan Williams and Schumann echoed through The WA Maritime Museum. Violinists, pianists, classical and opera singers concluded the final concert of A Single Day, with a magnificent view over the boats of Fremantle Harbour from the museum. There was a sense of peace that enveloped the room, mimicking the calm that comes after the storm of a busy day.

The experience of being present at A Single Day is one that few people will forget and each musical encounter was more powerful than the last. Each concert captivated with it’s atmosphere and unique location, and as the boats arrived against the scenic backdrop of the sunset, the emotion of the final musical encounter left a lingering thought about the many that came to these shores hundreds of years ago. A Single Day made for an unforgettable 24 hours in Fremantle and it was a privilege to be part of such a unique event.

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