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Saturday September 14, Lieder, Arias and Duets

Olivia Cranwell - Soprano

Olivia Cranwell is a graduate of the Master of Music (Opera Performance) program, run by Victorian Opera in partnership with the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, University of Melbourne. Prior to that, she completed her Bachelor of Music at the Victorian College of the Arts in 2009, and her Bachelor of Arts at the University of Melbourne in 2010. Olivia attended the inaugural Lisa Gasteen Opera Summer School in 2011.

This season, Olivia will perform the roles of The Queen of Hearts/Contrary Mary/The Spider in Opera Australia’s NSW schools tour of By the Light of the Moon and returns to City of Stonnington as Mimi in La Bohème where she sang the role of Cio-Cio-San in Madama Butterfly last year. Most recently for Opera Australia, she appeared in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, as Queen/Lady/ Papagena in Magic Flute on tour, Ortlinde in Die Wälkure in The Melbourne Ring Cycle, as Countess and Bridesmaid/Coro on the Regional Tour of The Marriage of Figaro and covered the role of Mimi in La Bohème. She was also featured as Princess in The Princess and the Pea, Mother in Hänsel und Gretel and at the Murray River International Music Festival in Mildura, all for Victorian Opera.

Olivia made her operatic debut with Victorian Opera playing the role of Gossip in Angelique, and since then she has performed as soloist in the Gala Concerts and the Proms Concert Games of Love and Chance, as well as the roles of Rapunzel in Stephen Sondheim’s Into The Woods, Watkin Wombat/Rooster (The Magic Pudding), Celeste 1 & Waitress (Sunday in the Park with George), Puss (Puss in Boots), Queen Clementine (Sleeping Beauty), Clorinda (Cenerentola), soloist (Assembly), Robber Girl (Snow Queen) and God (Noye’s Fludde). Covered roles include Cherubino (The Marriage of Figaro), Sesto (Julius Caesar) and Popova (The Bear) all for Victorian Opera.

She was a guest soloist in a Gala Concert with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra and a tour of Ring.Wagner.Animated with More Than Opera. She has also sung Carmen for In Good Company, Papagena in The Magic Flute with VCA Symphony Orchestra, Hansel and Mother/Witch/Sand Fairy for Opera Australia’s Schools Tour of Hansel and Gretel and covered the roles of Cio-Cio-San in Madama Butterfly and Countess in The Marriage of Figaro for Opera Australia.

Olivia’s notable achievements include runner-up in the Herald Sun Aria 2017, and at the 2014 Italian Opera Foundation Awards, winner of the 2011 South Eastern Arts Festival Aria and semi-finalist in the IFAC Australian Singing Competition. Olivia was also recently awarded the Australian Opera Auditions Committee’s Opera Scholarship.

Tomas Dalton - Tenor

Tenor Tomas Dalton completed a Bachelor of Music in voice performance at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, and also holds an AMusA in piano. He subsequently undertook further study at the Fondazione Pergolesi - Spontini as the recipient of the Acclaim Awards Italian Opera Fellowship.

Tomas made his European debut creating the role of Ernest in the world premier of Women in War at Ancient Theatre Ifaistia, Lemnos. He subsequently reprised the role at the Filippi Festival, Kavala, and for Arts Centre Melbourne. Tomas has also sung the roles of B F Pinkerton in Puccini's Madama Butterfly (The Classics: Opera), Tamino in Mozart's The Magic Flute (Opera Australia Schools Tour), The Villager in Respighi’s The Sleeping Beauty (Victorian Opera), and The Notary in Bellini’s La Sonnambula (Victorian Opera) alongside internationally acclaimed soprano Jessica Pratt.

Tomas’s concert repertoire includes the tenor solos from Mozart’s Requiem, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, and Puccini’s Messa di Gloria. He has toured Australia, Germany, Denmark, and France as a soloist with the Australian Chamber Choir. 

Tomas also recently toured Australia as Tony Candolino in Terrence McNally's Master Class (Andrew Kay & King's Head London) alongside Helpmann Award winner Amanda Muggleton, making his Sydney Opera House debut in the process. In 2016, he was a finalist for the Opera Foundation for Young Australians: Deutsche Oper Berlin Award, finalist for the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Aria, semifinalist for the German Australian Opera Grant, and winner of the Acclaim Awards Italian Opera

Benjamin Burton - Piano

Ben is a talented young pianist with a passion for accompanying vocal and instrumental performances. In his role as accompanist, Ben has performed all over the country, and in 2019 will be continuing to perform as pianist for the Opera Australia School's Tour, Moorambilla Voices, and with Voci Stupende. Highlights over the last couple of years have included recording with the ABC (appearing on the CD Ballads of a Pleasant Life with Peter Coleman-Wright and the Nexas Quartet), performing with Moorambilla Voices for the Royal Visit to Dubbo, and giving recitals with Daniela Leska at Sydney Town Hall and the Polish Embassy. Ben was awarded 1st Prize in the 2017 Sydney Song Prize, and 2nd Best Pianist in the 2016 MIETTA National Art Song Competition. 2019 sees Ben giving chamber recitals with Sirius Ensemble, in Narooma, and recording and performing with Moorambilla Voices for the 6th year, which he intends to squeeze around bringing up his young daughter, if she lets him. 

Saturday October 5 - Acacia Quartet

"Acacia Quartet performed so well that at times they seem like only one instrument, such is their clarity and unison."

In nine years Acacia Quartet have won great respect for their versatile and inventive programs. Acacia have recorded nine albums, with ‘Blue Silence’ earning a nomination for an APRA-AMCOS Art Music ‘Award for Excellence’.

Acacia are passionate about supporting Australian composers, working with young musicians, and sharing their love of music with audiences of all ages. Their performances feature regularly on radio stations around the world.

Acacia’s engagements in Australia include the Sydney Opera House, City Recital Hall Sydney, Melbourne Recital Hall, as well as extensive touring through regional NSW and Victoria.

Acacia had their international debut in Vancouver, Canada at the Roundhouse in June 2016. The following year, Acacia Quartet were invited by the Christine Raphael Foundation to give their European debut, where they performed 

concerts in Berlin and recorded a CD with three string quartets by Günter Raphael, to be released in March 2019.

Two CDs have just been released at the end of 2018, ‘Muse’ in collaboration with recorder player Alicia Crossley and ‘Imaginations’ with guitarist Matt Withers. Acacia Quartet is proud to be the Ensemble in Residence at the Orange Regional Conservatorium.

Lisa Stewart - Violin

Born in Sydney, Lisa began the violin aged 5 with Suzuki teachers Hiroko Primrose (and lots of input from her husband, legendary violist William Primrose) and Yasuki Nakamura. By 11 she was playing solos in Japan, the USA and New Zealand. Continuing studies with Christopher Kimber, Lisa won the Wenkart Competition, was finalist at the ABC Young Performers Competition, awarded multiple Australia Council grants and worked with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Sydney Symphony Orchestra before going to Germany to study with Prof Igor Ozim.

Lisa performed worldwide as a soloist, duo, chamber music musician and concertmaster

before returning to Australia in 2001. During Lisa's time abroad highlights include recording French sonatas for the Klavins Music label, Bach concertos on the Naxos label, performing with Concerto Cologne, Gürzenich Orchestra Cologne, West 

German Radio Symphony Orchestra, was a member of the Beethoven Orchestra Bonn, leader of the Cologne Chamber Orchestra and Guest 3rd Concertmaster with the London Philharmonic Orchestra under Bernard Haitink.

Returning to Sydney in 2001, Lisa has been Guest Concertmaster of the Opera Australia Orchestra, West Australian Symphony and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras. Lisa is also an established illustrator with numerous published books through Scholastic Press, Random House, Hachette and HarperCollins.

Myee Clohessy – Violin

Born in Sydney, Myee began the violin aged 10 with Ernest Llewllyn. Further studies

were with Alice Waten at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts and David

Takeno at the Guildhall School of Music in London.

Whilst based in Europe, Myee was Concertmaster of the Jeunesses Musicales World

Orchestra for two years, won 1st Prize at the Royal Overseas League Competition in London and held Principal positions with the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra, Norwegian Radio Orchestra and Arctimus Piano Quintet.

Since returning to Australia in 2002, Myee has toured with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, recorded regularly for ABC Classics, toured extensively with Acacia Quartet and since 2015 has become the Artistic Director of the Bowral Autumn Music Festival.

Stefan Duwe – Viola

Born in Oldenburg, Germany, Stefan studied viola with Marcel Charpentier, Konrad Grahe and Emile Cantor at the Folkwang University of the Arts in Essen and attended

masterclasses with Thomas Brandis and Serge Collot. From 1992 he worked with a number of orchestras including the Cologne Chamber Orchestra, Theatre Nordhausen, Folkwang Chamber Orchestra, Philharmonia Hungarica, Philharmonie Essen, Düsseldorfer Sinfoniker and Die Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. Since immigrating to Australia in 2001, Stefan has worked with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra and recorded the 6th Brandenburg Concerto for ABC Classics.

Since the formation of Acacia Quartet, Stefan has turned his focus to chamber music and teaching. He currently teaches at the Australian Institute of Music and the Mitchell


Anna Martin-Scrase - Cello

Born in Vermont, USA, Anna moved to Salzburg, Austria at the age of 16, where she lived for the next 10 years. She completed a Bachelor of Music Performance at Mozarteum University Salzburg, studying cello with Astrid Sultz, Michael Tomasi and Heidi Litschauer. Whilst in Austria, Anna performed with the Salzburg Chamber soloists, the Salzburg Cathedral Ensemble and at the Salzburg Festival with her quartet.

Since moving to Sydney in 2008, Anna has played Principal Cello with the Sydney Philharmonia Orchestra and Pacific Opera and recorded for Vexations840, AFTRS, Sonar Music and a solo CD of Moya Henderson’s Ecstatic Exercises for Solo Cello. Anna now concentrates her energies on Acacia Quartet and her teaching at Cranbrook School and her Manly studio.

Saturday June 29

Students of the Sydney Conservatorium with David Miller

ROBBIE ADAMS (trumpet) is in his fourth year of Trumpet Performance at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. During his time in the Rising Stars program, the Ewazen Trio for Trumpet, Piano and Violin came to him out of necessity—there was a shortage of other brass instrumentalists to play with, but a surplus of pianists and violinists. Robbie studies with Andrew Evans and has played for Hakan Hardenburger and Rex Richardson in masterclasses. In 2017, he performed at the International Convention Centre, Sydney (ICC) with the Distant Worlds Philharmonic Orchestra, playing Nobuo Uematsu’s composition under the direction of Arnie Roth. In 2018, he performed Joseph Haydn’s Trumpet Concerto in E flat with the Macquarie Towns Orchestra. Robbie also performs the Last Post on bugle for Anzac Day and Remembrance Day, for crowds of 10,000 people.

GRACE JOHNSON (piano) began her piano studies at the age of four. After completing her AMEB exams, she attended a creative and performing arts high school, during which she achieved her Associate Diploma and was nominated for Encore. She is now in her third year of Piano Performance under the tuition of Daniel Herscovitch, previously studying with Gerard Willems and Lyall Duke. Apart from her solo studies, she teaches privately and regularly accompanies brass, woodwind and string instrumentalists, and has performed at promotional events for Yamaha. She became part of the Avant Trio in mid-2018 and has enjoyed furthering her ensemble skills and learning the music of modern American composers. Having studied journalism and then musicology before transferring to a piano major, Grace continues to write about music. Her articles and reviews appear in University of Sydney publications and she also regularly publishes short fiction pieces and news stories. Grace hopes to continue performing, expanding both her solo and chamber repertoire, and to continue writing about music.

MATEJA PRIMORAC (violin) was born in Bosnia and Herzegovina. She began studying the violin at age ten after first discovering her musical talent in singing. Two years later, she won first prize at the Croatian International Competition for violin. At age thirteen, she won a special prize at the regional competition in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Shortly after, she was encouraged to further her studies in Austria. There, she studied with renowned professors like Brian Finlayson and Igor Ozim in masterclasses. Mateja was a member of Kammerorchester in Klagenfurt and played in several quartets, trios, and even jazz ensembles. Currently in her fourth year of Violin Performance, studying under the instruction of Alice Waten, she performs regularly with Ensemble Muse, a seven-piece group dedicated to performing the works of both established and lesser-known female composers, and Ensemble Apex, a chamber orchestra that aims to present music from the 20th century and onwards, popular or not.

HEATHCLIFFE AUCHINACHIE (guitar) began his classical guitar studies under Georg Mertens at the age of 10. He then went on to study under Russian virtuoso Vladimir Gorbach at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. During his studies, he has been nominated for Encore, received a scholarship to study at the Sydney Conservatorium, and given numerous concerts as solo recitalist and chamber musician. Heathcliffe has received tuition and masterclasses from some of the most highly respected performers in the world, such as Lorenzo Micheli, Tim Kain, Z.o.o guitar duo, Dene and Irena Grant (SSO, Goldner String Quartet), Cathy McKorkill (Australia Ensemble, ACO), Martha Masters, Gian Marco Ciampa and Jane Curry. In addition to appearing as a solo recitalist, he regularly features in chamber ensembles and orchestras, including concerts with cellist (and former teacher) Georg Mertens, Orchestra 81, and his fellow musicians at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Furthermore, he performed as a duo with clarinettist Rebekah Rae at the Huntington Musical Festival in 2017. In 2019, he plans to further compete abroad and give recitals across the country. When not practicing or teaching, Heath enjoys writing and his articles have been published with Classikon and Limelight.

BRENDAN ZLATKIS (baritone) is a young Australian baritone currently in his final year of a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance, under the tuition of Andrew Dalton. Prior to his training at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Brendan spent time at the Actors Centre Australia. There, he took acting classes from some well-known Australian masters of stagecraft, including Dean Carey, Adam Cook, and Gale Edwards. Brendan is looking forward to the opportunity to perform for the first time along the southern coast of New South Wales with a group of his friends from the Conservatorium. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, playing chess, and relaxing by the beach. Next year, Brendan is looking to pursue performance in Australia and abroad.

DAVID MILLER (piano) was once described in a Sydney Morning Herald music review as "the role model of Australian accompanists" He is recognised as one of Australia's leading pianists, chamber musicians and vocal accompanist and has been appointed as a member of the Order of Australia for his service to music. His distinguished career has included partnerships with many internationally renowned singers and instrumentalists. He has also been a member of a number of leading Australian chamber music groups including Grevillea Ensemble, the Huntington Piano Trio, the contemporary ensemble Flederman and the Song Company. Mr Miller's performing schedule has taken him to the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Indonesia, Japan, China, Saudi Arabia, New Caledonia, Korea, Vanuatu, Thailand and Vietnam, as well as through most parts of Australia. He has toured and recorded for the ABC and 2MBS-FM and has served on the Artistic Review Panel for Musica Viva Australia.

David Miller has a wide range of CD recordings to his credit. For Wirripang he accompanied baritone Dr Michael Halliwell on When The Empire Calls and soprano Wendy Dixon in anthologies of often unpublished songs by Australian composers Horace Keats (Echo) and Miriam Hyde (Fire In My Heart). For the Tall Poppies label he has recorded the compete violin repertoire of Raymond Hanson with Susan Collins and 

three volumes of Flute Australia with Geoffrey Collins. He is about to issue a number of CDs featuring Australian chamber music and vocal repertorie with his two ensembles, Grevillea and Charisma. Many of the works are being presented for the first time.

David Miller has been on the staff of Sydney Conservatorium of Music since 1980 and in 1995 was given responsibility for Chamber Music/Accompaniment tuition and administration throughout the institution. He introduced a uniquely innovative and comprehensive program of study for students at both graduate and undergraduate levels and actively promoted a wide variety of performance opportunities for student ensembles in concerts, broadcasts and regional tours. His studio has produced many of Australia's finest and most successful piano accompanists. Mr Miller has conducted master classes and lectures for universities, conservatoriums, music organisations and music conferences in many parts of Australia and Asia. He was the inaugural president of the Accompanists' Guild of NSW and very active in the promotion of piano accompaniment as an independent art form, worthy of professional recognition and academic research.

Saturday Feb 16 - Inventi Ensemble

Ben Opie - oboe

Two types of people walk the alleys of Melbourne’s wildly eclectic arts scene: those who argue classical music is a static art form, and those who know the work of Ben Opie. Tackling mind-blowing innovation with the class and sensitivity of a veteran, Ben is a young oboist of matchless capacity performing at the cutting edge of classical music’s fresh-faced evolution. With a big emphasis on innovation and meaningful collaborations, Ben’s approach has the power to keep classical music connected and relevant to its audience. He does this not only in his performing career but also in his new role as Artistic Director of the Peninsula Summer Music Festival.​

You’d take him for a Melbournian, of course. Bearded, sharply dressed, and with a warm and generous demeanour, but you were certain of your opinions on what classical music is, and the effects it can have, right? Think again. Not in recent history has an Australian classical musician moved so courageously between projects. Bach from a three-tonne truck in a gritty Melbourne pop-up venue? No problem.​

Amongst a history of solo performances throughout Europe, the Middle East and North America, Ben’s boundary-obliterating chamber group, Inventi Ensemble has featured at the heart of the Australian music scene since early 2014. A champion of contemporary repertoire and mixed-media works, Ben has collaborated with Gretchen Miller (ABC Radio National) and artist Cecilia White (‘The Breathing Space Projects’), and has appeared in various other multimedia performances, both locally and internationally.​

Ben has featured around the world as an expert music mentor. His unique approach to pedagogy and practice seeks to encourage in young musicians not only the development of their musicianship but their creative entrepreneurial skills to boot. If there’s a young mind qualified to speak on true professional balance today, there’s no doubt it’s this one.

Harry Bennetts – Violin

Violinist Harry Bennetts studied at the Australian National Academy of Music under Dr. Robin Wilson and has just returned to Australia following a two-year residency at the Academy of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, mentored by concertmaster Noah Bendix-Balgley.

Harry has performed as soloist with the Melbourne, Canberra and Tasmanian Symphony orchestras, as well as giving solo and chamber recitals at the Sydney Opera House, Melbourne Recital Centre, Ukaria Cultural Centre, Cologne Philharmonie and Berlin Philharmonie. His most recent concert performance was the Korngold violin concerto with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra in 2018.

Harry was accepted into the international musicians seminar at Prussia cove in the class of Thomas Adès, and performed as an Emerging Artist with the Australian Chamber Orchestra (ACO). He has participated in masterclasses and lessons with Pinchas Zuckerman, Boris Kuschnir, Midori Gotō, Christian Tetzlaff and members of the Belcea and Doric string quartets.

William Clark – Viola

William completed his Bachelor of Music at the University of Melbourne, and studied for three years at the Australian National Academy of Music – on a scholarship at each institution.

An advocate for new music, William Clark has premiered many Australian works by composers including Don Kay, Melody Eotvos and Larry Sitsky. In 2015, William became violist with the Australian Chamber Orchestra Inspire Quartet, and Melbourne-based Affinity Collective Ensemble, with whom he toured Europe in 2016. He has also toured and performed extensively throughout China and Hong Kong.

William performs regularly with the Melbourne and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras, Victorian Opera, the Australian Chamber Orchestra, and the Australian Chamber Orchestra Collective, as well as the Inventi Ensemble.

Paul Zabrowarny – Cello

Paul Zabrowarny is a cellist with a strong interest in contemporary repertoire. Paul completed studies at the Elder Conservatorium and the Australian National Academy of Music before received grants from the Ian Potter Foundation and the Australia Council to undertake a Masters of Music Performance at the Conservatoire de Lausanne, Switzerland specialising in contemporary cello techniques.

As a chamber musician, Paul performs frequently with Inventi Ensemble, and has appeared as a guest musician with Syzygy Ensemble, Quartz String Quartet and the Melbourne Chamber Players. He also performs with Orchestra Victoria and the Australian Classical and Romantic Orchestra. He has performed recitals throughout Australia and Europe and has appeared as a soloist with orchestras.

Paul was an Emerging Artist with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and is the founding cellist of the ACO Inspire String Quartet. He has frequently performed for broadcasts, including solo performances on ABC Classic FM and Radio Suisse Romande.

Saturday May 4 - Romantic Horn Trio

Sebastian Dunn - French Horn

Having most recently completed his Masters in French Horn Performance under Gail Williams at Northwestern University in Chicago, Sebastian Dunn is currently preparing to tour regional Australia with the Australian Opera.

Growing up the son of two music teachers and the eldest of five boys, Sebastian enjoyed a lively and musically diverse childhood in Dubbo, New South Wales. His earliest musical pursuits began on Piano and Violin, learning both from his father and mother. As his passion for music grew so did the range of musical styles and instruments he and his brothers played and by the time he graduated from St Johns College, Dubbo, he was regularly performing in jazz combos on piano and percussion, singing and playing guitar in rock and pop groups, leading musicals and also performing classical repertoire on French Horn and Piano. Throughout his formative years, Sebastian was also highly involved in team sports and athletics, representing his local diocese and school in both cross country and Rugby Union.

Sebastian began formal training on French horn in 2008 when he commenced his bachelor of music at Sydney Conservatorium under Andrew Bain and Ben Jacks. After completing his study in Sydney he then received a full scholarship and stipend to study at the Australian National Academy of Music in Melbourne (ANAM) in 2012. During his time at ANAM Sebastian performed regularly in a wide variety of chamber music, recital and orchestral settings. It was also in Melbourne that he began to freelance professionally with the Tasmanian, Melbourne and Sydney Symphony Orchestras. Sebastian’s orchestral experience also includes two international tours with the Australian Youth Orchestra, video game and TV soundtrack recordings, a three-month season of the musical South Pacific, performances with Roberta Flack, The Whitlam’s, Michael Bolton and The Wiggle’s, a season of Massenet’s ballet Manon with the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra, and two national tours of Mozart’s The Magic Flute with the Australian Opera.

Benjamin Adler - Violin

Violinist Ben Adler is the Artist in Residence at St Andrew's College, within the University of Sydney.

Ben holds a Bachelor of Music from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, where he was leader of the Chamber Orchestra, concertmaster of the Symphony Orchestra, and performed as soloist with the Wind Symphony and Chamber Orchestra. Ben was awarded the Frank Hutchens Student of the Year Prize for 2014. The previous year, Ben won the prize for Best Performance of an Australian Piece at the Kendall National Violin Competition, and was a semi-finalist in the Gisborne International Music Competition.

Ben is currently a casual player with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, and a member of the ACO Collective, with whom he tours regularly. As a 2016 ACO Emerging Artist, he performed as both section member and soloist with the ACO. In 2017, he toured Europe with pianist Will Cesta, performing in London and at the Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival, Finland. Additionally, Ben was first violinist of the Hillel String Quartet from 2012 to 2016, with whom he toured Australia and Europe.

Beyond the violin, Ben debated for the University of Sydney, was published in the Sydney Undergraduate Journal for Musicology, and considers himself an enthusiastic but uncommitted long-distance runner.