Melbourne may be quiet on the classical music front in January, but some of our keenest young musicians are having the experience of a lifetime over a two-week intensive period – in Canberra. They’re at the annual Australian Youth Orchestra National Music Camp with programs for Orchestra, Orchestral Management, Words About Music, Composition and Sound Production.
Together with some of the best young players from all over Australia, they participate in a program encompassing all aspects of the preparation and rehearsal of full-scale symphonic or chamber orchestra repertoire.
There are rehearsals with internationally recognised conductors, sectional rehearsals and tutorials under the guidance from some of Australian most respected and skilled musicians, public performance and live broadcast opportunities and professional development seminars.
Finally the young musicians perform in one of the two full symphony orchestras or the string chamber orchestra, enjoying the experience of full-scale concerts with enthusiastic audiences.
Professional musicians involved in this year’s activities include Scottish born classical accordionist James Crabb, whose repertoire ranges from original contemporary works to transcriptions from Baroque to the 21st Century. A recognised authority on the music of Astor Piazzolla, James has collaborated with the original members of Piazzolla’s quintet and recorded with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Richard Tognetti, and the Tango Jam quintet.
Genevieve Lacey is a multiple award winning recorder virtuoso, serial collaborator and artistic director (Four Winds Festival) who holds academic and performance degrees (including a doctorate) in music and English literature from universities in Melbourne, Switzerland and Denmark. Passionate about contemporary music, she creates possibilities and contexts for new music, people and ideas.
Well-known to Melbourne music-lovers, Monica Curro (pictured) is currently in her 18th year as Assistant Principal 2nd Violin of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, and was previously she was a core member of the Australian Chamber Orchestra for 5 years. She has also played with Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Queensland Symphony Orchestra, and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra.
In 2009 Monica was invited as the only Australian to play in the World Orchestra for Peace conducted by Valery Gergiev for concerts in Poland and Sweden. She is a founding member of contemporary chamber ensemble PLEXUS which has commissioned over 70 composers and premiered 22 new works in 2014.
The ABC’s Alexandra Beech visited the camp this week and found a high level of enjoyment among participants – despite the hours of hard work! One said: “”It’s quite a demanding career path but I think it’s rewarding in the end.” Read the full piece.
Information about the AYO 2016 Camp was supplied by the AYO. For more about the orchestra and its many initiatives go to its website.