Dene Olding, violin

Dene Olding, violin

Dene Olding, trained at the Juilliard School in New York, winner of a Churchill Fellowship for advanced studies and one of Australia's best-known instrumentalists, has won many awards and was a Laureate of the Queen Elisabeth of Belgium International Violin Competition. He has had a distinguished career as a soloist in Australia, New Zealand and the USA, performing over forty concertos, including many world premieres. His recording of Ross Edwards' Maninyas was the winner of the 1994 ARIA award for best classical recording and the Cannes award.

He joined the Australia Ensemble in 1982 and was also at that time leader of the Australian Chamber Orchestra. He is also first violinist of the Goldner String Quartet and Concertmaster Emeritus of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. Dene is Artistic Advisor to the Michael Hill International Violin Competition and has served as a juror on other international competitions. He is also in demand as soloist and director with other Australian orchestras and combines a busy schedule of performing, touring and recording with his family life in Sydney. He plays a Joseph Guarnerius violin made in 1720.
Mark O'Leary, conductor

Mark O'Leary, conductor

Mark O'Leary B.Mus.Ed M.Mus is one of Australia's most active choral conductors, widely respected for his work with Young Voices of Melbourne which he founded in 1990 following a Churchill Fellowship study tour of outstanding children's choirs around the world. With Young Voices Mark has produced ten CD recordings, toured all states and territories of Australia and made nine international tours to Europe, South Africa, North America, Asia, Samoa and New Zealand.

He has also been the conductor of Exaudi Youth Choir since 2013, and is Principal Guest Conductor of Gondwana Voices, Australia's national children's choir. He has worked regularly with Gondwana Voices since its first season in 1997, attending 17 National Choral Schools, as well as making three CDs and four international tours.

Mark has special interests in Kodaly teaching techniques, the development of excellence in children's choirs and Australian choral music. He publishes Australian choral music for young choirs in the Young Voices of Melbourne Choral Series and is the creator of the Sight Singing School books and website, which won the President’s Award at the 2014 Australian eLearning Industry Association Awards and has users in more than thirtyfive countries.
Young Voices of Melbourne

Young Voices of Melbourne

Young Voices of Melbourne was founded by Mark O’Leary in 1990, and is now regarded as one of Australia’s finest young choirs. Choir members aged 6 to 28 years rehearse weekly in one of six groups. The choir performs regularly in and around Melbourne, and tours annually. It has taken its music to all states and territories of Australia, as well as Europe (1996, 2004 & 2010), South Africa (1998), Canada/USA (2001 & 2013), Singapore - Thailand (2007), Samoa (2011) and New Zealand (2015).

Young Voices of Melbourne has released ten CD recordings and has collaborated with many great choirs and artists both in Australia and on its travels abroad. Members of the choir attend different schools around Melbourne and are united by their love of singing great music together.
Exaudi Youth Choir

Exaudi Youth Choir

Exaudi Youth Choir has been part of the Young Voices of Melbourne organization since 2013. Most singers are graduates from good children’s and school choir programs, who want to continue their choral journeys. Exaudi has undertaken successful tours to regional Victoria in 2014, Hobart’s Festival of Voices in 2015 and to Malaysia and Singapore in 2016. Exaudi takes its name from the Latin word meaning "hear us".
Paul Jackson, lighting designer

Paul Jackson, lighting designer

Paul Jackson is a multi-award winning lighting designer and theatre maker based in Melbourne, Australia, whose practice encompasses theatre, opera, dance, music theatre, concerts and live events. He is a graduate of the University of Melbourne and RMIT.

Paul has designed lighting for The Australian Ballet, Royal New Zealand Ballet, West Australian Ballet, Victorian Opera, West Australian Opera, Sydney Theatre Company, Melbourne Theatre Company, Gordon Frost Organization, TML, The Production Company, Bell Shakespeare, Playbox, Malthouse, Belvoir, Ballet Lab, Lucy Guerin, World of Wearable Art New Zealand, Kage, Australian Art Orchestra, La Mama, not yet it’s difficult performance group, Chamber Made Opera and many others. He has collaborated with a diverse range of directors and choreographers including Barrie Kosky, Benedict Andrews, Neil Armfield, Michael Kantor, Marion Potts, Peter Evans, Matt Lutton, Simon Phillips, Andrew Upton, Sam Strong, Adena Jacobs, Kip Williams, Philip Adams, Jorma Uotinen, Renato Cuoccolo, Simon Stone, Anne-Louise Sarks, Javier de Frutos, Lucy Guerin, Moira Finucane, Julian Meyrick, David Pledger, Gale Edwards, Tom Wright and Philip Seymour Hoffman.

Paul has designed and co-designed sets and performance environments for a number of companies and organizations including Ranters, not yet it's difficult, Belvoir, Malthouse, La Mama, Melbourne Workers' Theatre, Melbourne Museum and Griffin. He has worked as a dramaturg on a range of projects.

A key creative on a number of seminal Australian theatre pieces, his work has featured in festivals and programmes in the United States, Asia, Europe and the United Kingdom. Listed in The Bulletin’s Smart 100 for 2004, he was the Gilbert Spottiswood Churchill Fellow for 2007 and was an Artistic Associate at Malthouse Theatre from 2007-2013. Paul has received a Helpmann Award, five Green Room Awards - with a further twenty five Green Room nominations - a Sydney Theatre Award and an Australian Production Design Guild Award.

Committed to mentoring emerging designers, Paul has lectured in design at the University of Melbourne, NMIT, RMIT University and Victorian College of the Arts. He was a founding member of not yet it's difficult performance group, was a member of Melbourne Workers' Theatre Artistic Advisory Group, and has been on the Board of St Martin's Youth Arts Centre.
James Crabb, classical accordion

James Crabb, classical accordion

Scottish born James Crabb is one of the world’s leading ambassadors of the classical accordion. His solo and chamber music repertoire ranges from original contemporary works, frequently collaborating with composers, to transcriptions from Baroque through to the 21st Century, Tango Nuevo and folk music.

James’ great passion and acclaimed authority for the music of Astor Piazzolla has resulted in collaborations with the original members of Piazzolla’s own quintet along with two highly acclaimed recordings, with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and with Richard Tognetti and the Tango Jam quintet.

Highlights of recent seasons include performing Piazzolla’s Aconcagua with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the Ulster Orchestra, concerto for accordion The Singing (Sally Beamish) at the BBC Proms, conducting and performing Piazzolla’s Maria de Buenos Aires (Victorian Opera), as well as performing at the Australian Festival of Chamber Music.

This year James’ engagements include working as mentor and teacher at the Australian Youth Orchestra’s National Music Camp, giving numerous recitals together with Genevieve Lacey, and appearing at the Canberra Chamber Music Festival and Huntington Festival.

James has also embarked on two new exciting collaborations, one with violinist Anthony Marwood and the other with recorder player Genevieve Lacey. Crabb-Lacey’s first recording together with ABC Classics, Heard This and Thought of You, has been released.
Paul Wright, violin

Paul Wright, violin

Menuhin School, Guildhall and Juilliard trained Adelaide born violinist Paul Wright has performed with leading ensembles and orchestras in Australia and overseas.

Paul has recently returned from the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM) in Melbourne where he held a position on the teaching faculty for eighteen months. Highlights during his time there included performances with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra, performances as director of the ANAM chamber orchestra at the Huntington Festival, and an evening playing with renowned gypsy violinist Roby Lakatos! He enjoys a continuing relationship with ANAM and will collaborate in future projects at the institution.

Paul is deeply involved in the performance practice of music from the 18th and 19th centuries and performs in numerous early music ensembles throughout the country.
Elizabeth Sellars, violin

Elizabeth Sellars, violin

Australian-born Elizabeth Sellars is a distinguished soloist and chamber musician with a reputation as “dynamically exciting" (The Australian) and “one of the few violinists…who can handle works that move in new directions" (The Age).

Elizabeth is a prize-winning graduate of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London where she studied with David Takeno (violin) and the Takacs String Quartets (chamber music). Further significant influences included Sandor Vegh and Yehudi Menuhin with whom Elizabeth worked at the International Musicians’ Seminar at Prussia Cove in Cornwall and at the International Menuhin Music Academy in Switzerland.

In Australia, Elizabeth’s early training was with Nehama Patkin (piano), Andre Hadges (violin) and Arkady Feldman (violin). She was amongst the early graduates of the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School where she studied with the Polish violinist Nathan Gutman. She has been the recipient of the Hepzibah Menuhin Scholarship, the Lady Northcote Scholarship, the Australian Music Foundation Award, the Countess of Munster Scholarship and the Martin Bequest.

During her time in London, Elizabeth was a winner of the inaugural John Tunnell Trust and the Royal Overseas League Ensemble Prize and Miller Trophy. As soloist and chamber musician, she toured extensively in the UK, broadcast for the BBC, and performed throughout Europe with the Academy of St Martin-in-the-Fields.

Now resident in Melbourne, Elizabeth has appeared in festivals throughout Australia including Port Fairy, Huntingdon, Bangalow, Castlemaine, Dunkeld, Melbourne International Arts Festival and the Blackwood River Chamber Festival. She has played with Ensemble Liaison and Elision and has been guest principal violinist with the Melbourne and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras, the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria. As a member of Temenos Trio she was third prize-winner in the 9th Concorso Musicale Internazionale “Riviera del Conero" in Italy.

Elizabeth is a member of the Sutherland Trio with pianist Caroline Almonte and cellist Molly Kadarauch. As a member of Temenos Trio, which presented its inaugural series in 2001, she was a prize-winner in the 9th Concorso Musicale Internazionale “Riviera del Conero" in Italy. Elizabeth has also performed with Elision, the Tin Alley String Quartet and Ensemble Liaison and has been guest principal violinist with the Melbourne and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras, the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria. She has appeared on radio and in festivals worldwide including Chichester, Cheltenham, Roaring Hoofs, Port Fairy, Huntingdon, Mornington Peninsula, Dunkeld, Bangalow, Castlemaine and the Blackwood River Chamber Festival.

Elizabeth is strongly committed to the performance of new work and with the support of the Australia Council has performed world premieres dedicated to her by Julian Yu, Dominik Karski, Calvin Bowman, Thomas Reiner and Philip Czaplowski. She has recorded for Naxos, Move and ABC Classics, and her live concerts and recordings are regularly heard on ABC Classic FM. Her recent world premiere recording of the George Benjamin Sonata with Kenji Fujimura was the winner of the 2014 Limelight Chamber Music Recording of Year. Upcoming CD releases include the world premiere recording of Piano and Violin sonatas by George Frederick Pinto with Toccata Classics.

Educating the next generation of students is a passion for Elizabeth. She has presented workshops for the Australian String Teachers Association, the University of Auckland, the International Akaroa Music Festival and the Pettman Junior Academy and as juror, she has served on panels for the Australian Youth Classical Music Competition, the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition and the Dorcas McClean Scholarship.

Elizabeth is currently Co-ordinator of strings at Monash University where she directs the Monash University String Sinfonia and enjoys teaching her many students.