Providing music for the masses

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Tis the season: Young performers from Macquarie Conservatorium's Youth Music Theatre Program in costume for their Christmas Show. Photo: Supplied.

Tis the season: Young performers from Macquarie Conservatorium's Youth Music Theatre Program in costume for their Christmas Show. Photo: Supplied.

A message from Director Vivienne Winther.

The last twelve months have been an enormous year for the Macquarie Conservatorium with more than 1,000 youth and adults participating in music tuition, workshops and performances.

Conservatorium staff travelled to schools in Dubbo, Gilgandra, Narromine, Trangie and Wellington each week, giving students the opportunity to learn an instrument and play in their school band.

Brass, wind, strings, drumming, guitar, classroom and early childhood music were taught onsite at Orana region schools and preschools.

In partnership with Outback Arts, drumming teacher Dale Freeman travelled to Cobar, Bourke, Warren, Coonamble, Walgett and Lightning Ridge for drumming workshops, giving people in remote communities a chance to try this fun instrument.

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Composer Tim Hansen visited for three days of workshops for secondary school music students and teachers from Dubbo College, St Johns College and Dubbo Christian School. These workshops were filmed by the NSW Department of Education for the online professional development for school teachers.

In June, many of the City of Dubbo Eisteddfod’s major prizes and scholarships were awarded to Conservatorium students and ensembles, with piano and viola student Emma Newby awarded the Daily Liberal Instrumental Scholarship.

Recognition: Piano and viola student Emma Newby was awarded the Daily Liberal Instrumental Scholarship as part of the Dubbo Eisteddfod. Photo: Supplied.

Recognition: Piano and viola student Emma Newby was awarded the Daily Liberal Instrumental Scholarship as part of the Dubbo Eisteddfod. Photo: Supplied.

Conservatorium students also sat for AMEB practical exams, with eight students receiving High Distinction, 14 receiving Honours and 16 receiving Credit results.

Three students sitting 8th Grade exams did very well, with Emma Newby awarded a High Distinction, and Madelyn Fardell and Robin Hall awarded Honours.

Visiting artists from the Macquarie Conservatorium Concert Series, including the Seraphim Trio, the Australian Brass Quintet, Russian pianist Andre Gugnin and flautist Jane Rutter, gave local students the chance to perform for them and benefit from their feedback in masterclasses.

Working together: Workshop for brass and wind players with musicians from Sydney Symphony Orchestra at Macquarie Conservatorium. Photo: Supplied.

Working together: Workshop for brass and wind players with musicians from Sydney Symphony Orchestra at Macquarie Conservatorium. Photo: Supplied.

Visiting musicians from the Sydney Symphony Orchestra also gave a popular workshop for wind and brass players.

Conservatorium ensembles performed at many charity, school and community events, including the DREAM Festival Markets and Lantern Parade and the Multicultural Festival, bringing the joy of music to audiences in Dubbo and Wellington.

Colonial Opera: Beautiful music at the Dundullimal Homestead with the Macquarie Youth Chorus performing at 'Opera at Dundullimal'. Photo: Supplied.

Colonial Opera: Beautiful music at the Dundullimal Homestead with the Macquarie Youth Chorus performing at 'Opera at Dundullimal'. Photo: Supplied.

A new event this year was ‘Opera at Dundullimal’, presented in partnership with Dubbo’s National Trust property, Dundullimal Homestead. A large crowd enjoyed the open air event, with music performed by visiting opera singers and the Conservatorium’s Youth Chorus.

Enrolments are now open for 2018, for tuition for all ages on a range of instruments and voice, along with the Youth Chorus and the Youth Music Theatre Workshop.