29 March 2011

More than 240 ex-students of the NSW State Conservatorium of Music have been formally welcomed into the University of Sydney alumni community in a special recognition ceremony at the main campus's Great Hall.

The illustrious list reads like a who's who of Australian music history, and includes trumpeter James Morrison, flautist Jane Rutter, Opera Australia's artistic director Lyndon Terracini and baritone Geoffrey Chard.

These "Missing Musos" were presented with recognition certificates by the Chancellor of the University, Her Excellency, Professor Marie Bashir.

Why were they "missing"? Because The Con did not become a faculty of the University of Sydney until 1990, so students who attended prior to this time were until recently not formally recognised as alumni.

Jane Rutter was a student at the Conservatorium High School before she was awarded a French Government scholarship to study in Paris.

On return from France, she was appointed as a lecturer at The Con, resuming her connection with the iconic Sydney institution that will celebrate its centenary in 2015.

Reflecting of the Alumni recognition ceremony, Jane said it was important for musicians to be recognised for their devotion to the abstract form.

"Music is one of the great languages of mankind. It gives people the chance to be connected intellectually, spiritually, emotionally and physically," Jane said.

"Higher education in music allows even more opportunity to continually explore and experience that special connection.

"Having our musical scholarship and contribution recognised by Sydney University is an important association for us musicians."

Dean and Principal of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Professor Kim Walker told the illustrious gathering that the term "missing' meant The Con and the University were "really missing you."

She said, "We were a tribe cut off from its elders - a tree cut from its roots. Now that we have found these family members, we are not going to let them go."

Contact: Mick Le Moignan

Phone: 02 9351 1385

Email: 0f13081e6725100e09223d57035b213d1e4f07070b191615207c3941