Nora Ephron. Jane Austen. Mills and Boon? The genre of romance has been a literary staple for centuries and often follows a formulaic plot to reach a “happily ever after”. In “Romance by the Book”, soprano Katie Stenzel and pianist Alex Raineri musically step through the typical chapters of a romance novel; using the lush music of Liszt, Debussy, Schumann and more, to explore first impressions through to messy relationship hurdles and beyond. Do these great Romantic period composers echo the cliches of tear-jerking dramas or rom-coms? And will it be a happy ending?


Livestream Concert


Katie Stenzel is a dynamic, coloratura soprano. Described by Limelight Magazine as possessing “a powerful and perfectly controlled upper range”, she has established herself as an engaging and multi-faceted performer. She graduated with a Bachelor of Music from Queensland University of Technology and subsequently completed her Master of Music Studies at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music.

Katie has since performed across Australia and internationally with companies including State Opera South Australia, Opera Queensland, Opera Australia, The Brisbane Festival, The Adelaide Fringe Festival, and the Taipei Drama Festival in Taiwan.

Her operatic roles have included Queen of the Night in The Sopranos, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Valencienne in The Merry Widow, Zerlina in Don Giovanni, Niece 1 in Peter Grimes, Zorah in Ruddigore and the creation of the role of Loretta in The Crushing: A Gothic Opera. She has also understudied roles including Euridice and Amore in Orfeo ed Euridice, Kumudha in A Flowering Tree, Rose Maybud in Ruddigore, Berta in Il barbiere di Siviglia, Cunegonde in Candide, and Yum Yum in The Mikado. She has appeared in concert works including Messiah(Handel), Carmina Burana (Orff) and Oratorio de Noêl (Saint-Saëns).

Katie was a featured artist of the Brisbane Music Festival in both 2020 and 2021. She was honoured to be invited to reprise her performance alongside BMF Artistic Director and pianist, Alex Raineri to re-open the Queensland Performing Arts Centre after their 6-month hiatus. 2021 also saw Katie make her State Opera South Australia debut in the role of Rosina in Il barbiere di Siviglia to great acclaim.


Hailed as a “born communicator” (The Australian), a “brilliant young musician (Otago Times), and a “soloist of superb virtuosic skill and musicality” (Limelight), Alex Raineri (b. 1993) is active Internationally and throughout Australia as a recitalist, concerto soloist, chamber musician, writer, producer and educator.

International performances include tours throughout America, Southeast Asia, United Kingdom, Ireland, New Zealand, Germany and Austria. Within Australia, Alex has appeared as a feature artist in many major festivals and venues. As a concerto soloist he has appeared with the Queensland, Tasmanian, Darwin and West Australian Symphony Orchestras, Ensemble Q, Southern Cross Soloists, Orchestra Victoria, Four Winds Festival Orchestra, Bangalow Festival Orchestra, Queensland Youth Symphony and the Queensland Pops Orchestra. He has been broadcast on BBC Radio 3, Radio NZ, California Capital Public Radio, ABC Classic FM and all of the Australian MBS Networks.

Alex is the Artistic Director of the annual Brisbane Music Festival. He is a passionate exponent and commissioner of contemporary music, having given 109 World Premieres + 147 Australian Premieres to date.

Major awards include the Kerikeri International Piano Competition and Australian National Piano Award. He was the recipient of the Queensland Luminary Award in the 2021 APRA/AMCOS Art Music Awards and received a Kranichsteiner Musikpries at the International Summer Courses for New Music (Darmstadt, Germany).

Notable collaborations include Andreas Ottensamer, TwoSet Violin, eighth blackbird, ELISION, Sara Macliver, Natalie Clein, Natsuko Yoshimoto, Karin Schaupp, Greta Bradman, Li Wei Qin, Teddy Tahu Rhodes, Jack Liebeck, Kathryn Stott, Slava Grigoryan, Brett Dean, William Barton, Ensemble Offspring, Orava Quartet, and many others.

Additionally to a full-time performative profile, Alex is a radio-presenter on 4MBS Classic FM, a reviewer for The Music Trust’s ‘Loudmouth’, and holds associate artist positions at both the Queensland Conservatorium, Griffith University and
The University of Queensland.

About 2022 Live at UQ Concert Series

The University of Queensland, School of Music is proud to present our Concert Series for 2022. In reflecting the School's role in the broader South-East Queensland community, we have designed a diverse and exciting program. With established international and national artists performing, as well as our own emerging student artists, this year is set to be a vibrant, creative, and energetic time at the UQ School of Music. We look forward to connecting with you, as you explore this concert series, listen to our streamed and recorded concerts, and visit us at the St Lucia campus or browse through our website


Watch previous concerts 


Nickson Room