THE glorious and magical sounds of Italy's Elisabetta Ghebbioni will fill the Art Gallery of Ballarat on Tuesday night for a special performance.
Having filled opera houses and music halls throughout the world, Ghebbioni will return to the place she sees as her second home when she plays in the Oddie Gallery.
Ghebbioni has been coming to Ballarat since 2005 and will be joined in the one-off performance by violinist Nicci Dellar, violist Lawrie Jacks, and cellist Miriam Kriss as they present a romantic program of works by Edward Elgar, Camille Saint-Saëns, Nikolaus Moritz Mostler and Heitor Villa-Lobos.
Ghebbioni said she had been enchanted by the harp since she was a little girl when she changed instruments from the piano.
"When I was little, I loved shiny things and the first harp I was given a chance to play was golden," she said.
"You can imagine a little girl who was playing a black piano, to suddenly seeing this beautiful instrument. My heart was in my throat.
"I was asked to try it out in the middle of summer and our school year begins in November, so I remember being so scared all summer about my first lesson.
"My teacher showed me how to hold the harp and said, 'play' and I was completely overwhelmed, I've never felt such excitement. I still remember that feeling today."
Elisabetta Ghebbioni and friends is at Art Gallery of Ballarat on Tuesday from 7.30pm. Tickets adult $30, concession $28 and gallery members $25.
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