Anyone expecting an evening of baroque pyrotechnics from this world-class Australian countertenor would have been initially disappointed. What we were given instead was a programme that showcased an astonishing range of musical styles with Hansen meeting the challenges head on, often with great beauty and fine technical control. I came away having rethought the place of the countertenor in opera and song. Aside from the ravishing quality of his voice, Hansen’s legacy will be to have moved perceptions concerning the countertenor repertoire to a wider set of possibilities.

For readers who are not familiar with this London concert venue, Kings Place is a wonderful concert hall built in the basement area of the offices of The Guardianand Observernewspapers just behind Kings Cross Station. It has a warm acoustic in a beautiful wood panelled hall, large foyer areas and at ground floor level, views over the Regent’s Canal. It is a venue with a strong reputation for creative energy and experimentation in classical music. A perfect place for Hansen to make a rare London appearance.

The Brodsky Quartet (who both accompanied and shared the concert with Hansen) is an old favourite at Kings Place and we were treated to some fine...