A standing ovation from the NSW Governor David Hurley confirmed to the Albury Chamber Festival committee this year’s event was the best yet, and further inspired their plans for next year.
In its third year, seven concerts were held across Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Artistic director Helena Kernaghan said it was during concert three, featuring Ensemble Liaison and Flinders Quartet, that Mr Hurley got to his feet.
“We asked David Griffiths and Svletana Bogosavljevic (of Ensemble Liaison) to come last year to fill in for a group of Hungarian instrumentalists who cancelled,” she said.
“They came up from Melbourne on recommendation from my old piano teacher and we wanted them to return this year.
“They were unbelievable.
“We’re trying to strike the balance between bringing back the favourites and new performers.”
Orpheus Piano Trio and composer Gordon Kerry represented the local talent, with Kerry conducting a world-premiere of a piece.
Festival executive officer Amanda Giblin said international talent included soprano Ayse Goknur Shanal, with more than 150 people filling St Matthew’s Church on Saturday night.
“She’s Australian, but spends a lot of time overseas,” she said.
“We had some really big names coming up from Melbourne.
“Concert one was a sell-out, Friday night’s concert was practically sold out – we’ve had massive numbers this year and really good pre-sale tickets as well.
“We’ve had people come from New Zealand, who have specifically bought festival passes for this weekend and have come over for a week to Australia, two years in a row.
“People have also come from North Sydney, Geelong, and even South Australia.
“The festival is starting to build its own momentum now and it’s going interstate and internationally.”
Ms Giblin said without her sister Kernaghan, Father Peter MacLeod-Miller and volunteers, the event could not run so well.
“If we were able to get more funding or help from people, it would make it even better,” she said.
“We had our first concert in 2016, 2017 was such a success it gave us hope and in 2018, it’s better than we anticipated; it can only go up.”
Next year’s festival will run from Friday, November 15 to Sunday, November 17.