Xavier de Maistre + Affinity Quartet


Presented by Melbourne Recital Centre


‘Xavier de Maistre is a virtuoso of the highest order’ – Gramophone

One of today’s leading harpists, Xavier de Maistre is renowned for his groundbreaking contributions to classical music. With a fierce dedication to his instrument, critics have lauded Xavier de Maistre as ‘a virtuoso of the highest order, profoundly musical and capable of realising a remarkable range of nuance’ (Gramophone). Born in Toulon, Xavier studied the harp with Vassilia Briano at his local conservatoire, before perfecting his technique to then become the first French musician to be admitted at the Wiener Philharmoniker. Collaborating with revered conductors like Sir André Previn and Sir Simon Rattle, he has graced prestigious orchestras worldwide, including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg, and the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Having released a series of acclaimed albums, including Nuit d’Etoiles dedicated to Debussy, Xavier’s innovative approach makes him a true luminary in the field.

In an exclusive Australian recital, witness Xavier challenge traditional harp music through daring commissions and reimagined instrumental classics. From the rippling arpeggios and intricate harmonies of Debussy’s beloved ‘Two Arabesques, L.66’, to Henriette Renié’s enchanting Romantic masterpiece Legende d’après les Elfes, don’t miss this awe-inspiring performance marking the first time a harp has been featured as a solo instrument in the Elisabeth Murdoch Hall.

Post-Concert Talk

Following this extraordinary performance, Xavier de Maistre joins Melbourne Recital Centre’s Director of Programming, Marshall McGuire, in the ground floor foyer for a 20-minute discussion about his artistry, career, and more. Take a seat and enjoy this perfect conclusion to your musical experience.

Caring for Our Community

Melbourne Recital Centre is committed to the safety of our artists, staff and patrons. A range of public health, hygiene and physical distancing measures are currently in place. Click here to learn more.

Artists & Program


This is a Dynamic Double Set experience: a musical matching of artists designed to enhance your concert experience.

Set 1: Affinity Quartet
Affinity Quartet represents the next generation of Australia’s chamber music stars, having developed their craft in Europe to critical acclaim. Following their recent Grand Prize win at the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition and a sold-out show at Melbourne Recital Centre, Affinity Quartet return to perform revolutionary masterpieces. Opening with Haydn’s String Quartet Op.76 No.62 in C, ‘Emperor’, witness this ground-breaking composition which was lauded at the time as being ‘full of invention, fire, good taste, and new effects.’

Set 2: Xavier de Maistre, harp


Set 1: Affinity Quartet

Joseph Haydn
String Quartet No.62 in C ‘Emperor’, Op.76 No.3, Hob.III/77

Set 2: Xavier de Maistre
Giovanni Battista Pescetti
Sonata in C minor

Francisco Tárrega
Recuerdos de l’Alhambra (Memories of the Alhambra)

Manuel de Falla
Spanish Dance, from La Vida Breve

Franz Liszt
Le Rossignol, S.250/1

Bedřich Smetana
Moldau, from Má vlast

Gabriel Fauré
Impromptu in D-flat, Op.86

Claude Debussy
Two Arabesques, L.66
No.1: Andantino con molto

Claude Debussy
Clair de Lune from Suite Bergamasque, L.75 No.3

Henriette Renié
Legende d’après les Elfes (Legend of the Elves)

Experience Guide

See.png See one of the world’s leading harpists performing solo for the first time in the Elisabeth Murdoch Hall.

Hear.png Hear romantic, emotional, and deeply moving masterpieces.

Think.png Think about how Xavier de Maistre challenges your understanding of traditional harp music.

Feel.png Feel inspired, contemplative and enlivened by this experience.


This production is part of the following series: