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Austin's Bach on stage

Daron Letts
Northern News Services

Yellowknife (July 15/05) - For many years, pianist Annette Austin suffered from stage fright that kept her from performing in public.

She doesn't have stage fright any more.

Austin presented two passionately-played pieces on her father's baby grand piano during the One Act Festival at the Northern Arts and Cultural Centre last week.

"I had the courage and I thought, well, I should do it," she said.

"When you put your guts into something, you want to have that chance to perform it in front of an audience."

Austin finished her Grade 10 Royal Conservatory Piano years ago. She has performed occasionally at church events, but longed to do a recital of her classical pieces.

Austin practised two hours a day in the weeks leading up to the festival and often played for friends in her living room.

Bach is technically her best, but for last weekend's recital she chose Chopin for his sensuality and Beethoven for his dramatic temperament.

Between the pieces, her friends Giselle Forget and Mathew Grogono danced a tango across the stage.

Austin's courage shows that, when someone has talent, there's definitely space in this community to share it.