11 August 2011

Conservatorium staff, students and alumni are celebrating a number of recent successes and awards.

Associate Professor Kathryn Marsh and Lecturer in Music Education, Dr Jennifer Rowley, have each been awarded grants in excess of $200,000 by the Australian Learning & Teaching Council (ALTC).

Associate Professor Kathy Marsh
Associate Professor Kathy Marsh

Kathy Marsh's research on children's musical play has been featured in two programs, One, Two, Buckle my Shoe and Seriously Play, on the BBC's World Service. All of her field recordings will soon be accessible as a named collection at the British Library and some are currently available on the British Library website, Playtimes. The ALTC grant will fund a return visit for Kathy with selected students to the Tennant Creek area, to work with primary school children on songs developed by an indigenous poet in the local language. Outcomes of the two-year project will include guidelines for university and community partnerships that develop students' intercultural competencies, and transform their understandings of Indigenous culture.

Jennifer Rowley has been conducting research into the life-experiences that prepare students for tertiary music study and the ways in which students' identity shifts from musician to music teacher in their early years working in schools. The project to be supported by the ALTC involves providing tertiary students from the Performing and Creative Arts with skills to create an electronic folio (ePortfolio) to document their academic and artistic outcomes for future employment and enhanced employability in the arts sector. It is based on research conducted by Jennifer and Associate Professor Peter Dunbar-Hall at SCM and will be extended to students at four other Australian universities.

Jennifer Rowley
Jennifer Rowley

Dr Joanna Drimatis, part-time Lecturer in Musicology and Research Affiliate, has been awarded a prestigious State Library of Victoria Creative Fellowship for 2011-12.

Her research project, Rediscovering Hidden Treasures: The Music of Robert Hughes will involve the investigation into the works for chamber orchestra by Robert Hughes AM (1912-2007) as well as provide a valuable opportunity to lay the ground work for a book on Hughes' life and music. The outcomes of the project will include the creation of new critical editions which will be published, performed and recorded.

On 23 July, Su-Yu Chen, a graduate diploma student in the Masters of Music Studies (Performance) course, won the Geoffrey Parsons Award of the Accompanists' Guild of South Australia. Geoffrey Parsons AO, OBE studied at the NSW State Conservatorium in the 1940s and came to be regarded as one of the finest accompanists in the world. To win this competition is a great accolade for an accompanist.

Joanna Drimatis
Joanna Drimatis

The Sydney Conservatorium Chamber Choir, directed by Senior Lecturer in Conducting and Music Education, Dr Neil McEwan AM, FRSCM, is celebrating two victories in the recent Sydney Eisteddfod. They won the Sacred Music and the Chamber Choir sections.

Violin student, Emily Sun, already a grand finalist in the ABC Symphony Australia Young Performer of the Year (to be televised on 3 September) won the first prize in the Goldner Competition on 29 July. The second prize was won by cellist Vincent Lo. Emily studies with Robin Wilson and Vincent with Georg Pedersen.

At the NSW Flute Society's annual Eisteddfod on 31 July, Kinsey Alexander, a Year 12 student at the Conservatorium High School, studying flute with Professor Alexa Still, won both Open and Intermediate Championships and the Open Concerto competition.

Former SCM students Alana Blackburn and Alicia Crossley were joint winners of the open section in the inaugural Don Cowell Recorder Competition in Melbourne, held on 16 July. Also among the five selected finalists was SCM graduate Joanne Arnott.

The Dean & Principal of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Professor Kim Walker, commented: "A lot of the hard work in music takes place behind the scenes: no-one applauds you for all the hours of scholarship and practice! It's good to be able to celebrate these public achievements of our staff and students, as they symbolise our constant pursuit of excellence. They are a well-deserved reward for a huge amount of effort, great insight and dedication."

Contact: Mick Le Moignan

Phone: 02 9351 1385

Email: 5f3e271c1f0b11173f5b235c522933433d0d1f1d1c6c10555a58201c