The two long-term collaborators take us behind the scenes of their new double disc.

Elena: When and how did you and Tamara first ‘connect’ musically?

I talked to Tamara on the phone shortly after I returned to Australia from Germany. We talked for a long time about all kinds of things and she agreed to premiere one of my works which she claims she did not realise because she could not understand my accent, and just said yes. Next time we met was when Tamara came over to my place to play the piece through. It was a great performance.

Tamara: What was your first encounter with Elena’s music? Whose idea was the new project, and how did you go about choosing repertoire?

My first performance of Elena’s music was in 1995 when I premiered Variations in a Serious Black Dress in Sydney, then the following year I premiered Schubert Blues stepping in for Roger Woodward at his Sydney Spring Festival of New Music. Also at that time I worked with Elena in an ensemble of five pianists (including Roger, Stephanie McCallum, Lyle Chan) at the same festival. We performed Andrew Ford’s Tattoo and Elena’s own In Five as well...