Bill Murray probably isn't the first person who comes to mind when you think of classical music gigs at the Sydney Opera House, but the Groundhog Day and Ghostbusters star has a habit of popping up where you least expect him.
Hollywood's always amiable king of comedy recently recorded an album called New Worlds with German-American cellist Jan Vogler and is bringing that collaboration to the Concert Hall this November.
The album is a fusion of European classical music (composers including Ravel, Schubert and Bach) and music from American composers (Gershwin and Bernstein) with spoken word excerpts from American writers (Twain, Hemingway and Whitman). Murray will mostly perform the spoken word parts, but he does sing on a couple of tracks on the album, wrapping his distinctive if not super musical voice around a few familiar tunes.
If you want an idea of what to expect, check out Murray and Vogler performing a West Side Story medley together. Murray's rendition of 'I Feel Pretty' is unforgettable.
The collaboration came out of Murray and Vogler's long-standing friendship. They've already performed this rather eccentric show at major halls around the US, including New York's prestigious Carnegie Hall. In Sydney, they'll be joined by Chinese-American violinist Mira Wang, and Venezuelan-American pianist Vanessa Perez. They'll also play dates in Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth.
Bill Murray, Jan Vogler & Friends: New Worlds is at the Sydney Opera House on November 9 and 10. Tickets are on sale February 19 at 9am.