What is your role in the Bellingen Youth Orchestra Ensembles?
I support the players technically and musically in rehearsal preparation to reach their best as expected by the Artistic Director and to share their enjoyment of the rehearsals and the performances. I play clarinet and bass clarinet.

What are some of your musical achievements?
I have played with the NSW Concert Band, NSW Conservatorium Orchestra and have directed concert bands of the Canberra Youth Orchestra and Victorian secondary colleges. While a lecturer in Music Education at James Cook University my Townsville Youth Band placed 3rd in the Australian National Championships. I have played as member of a clarinet quartet and play currently with the Waterfall Winds wind quintet. My research into clarinet performance of student and professional players was the first to physically measure clarinet players’ breath support.

What do you love about playing music? 
“Music reproduces for us the tempo and energy of our spiritual being, our tranquillity and our restlessness, our vitality and our weakness…… all in fact of the fine shades and dynamic variation of our inner life. It reproduces these far more directly and specifically than is possible in any other medium of human communication”. Roger Sessions; The Composer and his Message  (1941)

What inspired you to teach music in Bellingen?
I recognised that Bellingen has a national reputation for music education as is apparent in the teachers’ expectations of the music students. The ensemble rehearsals are efficient and musically productive showing purposeful direction with great enthusiasm for the repertoire and its preparation. The learning/rehearsal enterprise is presented as the opportunity for shared enjoyment and fun with the students seen as individuals. The teachers’ passion and commitment are reflected in the students’ focus during rehearsals and in the energy and commitment of final performance.

More than just an orchestra
More than just music

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