Elder Conservatorium of Music


Elder Conservatorium of Music is hosting a series of Performance Sessions to provide a taste of each area of classical and jazz performance.

Each session will include a Master Class, Q & A and an Open Rehearsal, giving students the opportunity to experience what it would be like as a music student at The Elder Conservatorium within the University of Adelaide. These sessions are held in small groups, with limited spots available.

Please see below the applicable event timetable and registration instructions. Registrations required.


Saturday 11th August 2018

1:00pm – 4:00pm

Keyboard Day

Percussion Day 


Wednesday 15th August 2018

4.30pm – 8.00pm

Woodwind Brass and Choir Day 


Saturday 18th August 2018

1:00pm – 4:00pm

Jazz Day


Wednesday 22nd August 2018

4.30pm – 6.30pm

Strings Day

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On Friday, 23rd March, a number of outstanding students at the Elder Conservatorium were recognised for their excellence.


2018 Elder Prize Ceremony - Austin Zilm -winner Jiri Tancibudek Scholarship

Austin Zilm, winner of the Jiri Tancibudek Scholarship

2018 Elder Prize Ceremony - Frank Sullivan and Imala Konyn

Frank Sullivan and Imala Konyn

2018 Elder Prize Ceremony - Bob & Gayle Cowan with students

Bob and Gayle Cowan with students

2018 Elder Prize Ceremony - Christopher & Wendy Moten with Anna Freer

Christopher and Wendy Moten with Anna Freer


2018 Elder Prize Ceremony - Callum McGing - winner Lucy Josephine Bagot Prize


Callum McGing, winner of the Lucy Josephine Bagot Prize

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IMG_4272Visit to Royal Academy of Music, January 24th: “It was really great to see how the Royal Academy of Music Orchestra rehearsed. It was interesting to observe their rehearsal process, and to watch how the conductor, Olivier Knussen tackled problematic sections of a work. His ears are incredible – he was easily able to identify missing or slightly flat notes to a particular player even through dense orchestration. It was wonderful to see how the players responded to his instructions, and to observe all thee different dynamics within each instrument section.” – Thomas Chalker



Concert, JanuaryIMG_4281 24th: “As the first concert of the trip, it was fascinating to hear an Italian orchestra play Italian repertoire. As a pit orchestra, the orchestra was at home playing the Rossini La gazza ladra overture, with its military opening on the snare drum and romantic, sonorous melodies from the winds and strings. Following a regimented Italian opening, Benjamin Grosvenor brought a dazzling display of virtuosity in Grieg’s piano concerto in A minor. Finally, the orchestra presented a very Italian version of Tchaikovsky’s 4th Symphony followed by an encore of Verdi. It was a fantastic experience to see an orchestra bring so much energy and enthusiasm to the stage.” – Cianah Harris



IMG_4322Concert, January 25th: “Getting to see the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by François-Xavier Roth play some of Debussy’s great orchestral works was a delight. A particular highlight was hearing both Prèlude à l’après-midi d’un faun and the Three Nocturnes, given that I have performed in both pieces in previous years at the Elder Conservatorium. Gareth Davies’ rendition of the opening solo to the Prelude was stunning and quite different to other renditions I have previously heard, which made it all the more enjoyable. Overall, it was incredibly inspiring to hear a world-class orchestra playing some of my favourite repertoire.” – Madeleine Stewart



IMG_4291Visit to Royal Albert Hall, January 25th: “It was amazing to see how incredibly versatile (and resilient!) such a monumental building could be. From being ready to stage the Proms, to a Coldplay concert or Cirque du Soleil, to being flooded for a production of Madama Butterfly and being turned into an indoor tennis court!” – Thomas Chalker




IMG_4328Sylvain Blassel Masterclass, January 26th: “Sylvain brought such an extensive knowledge of every piece presented and merged his artistic ideas off of academic insight. He spoke about many common problems harpists face such as transcriptions of baroque and early classical music, brought into the harp repertoire much later in the 19th and 20th centuries, and the challenges of authentic performance. He also made the group face many harp ‘traditions’ such as the over romanticism of music, and ways to either use that to enhance performances or be aware of when learning scores. Finally, he brought an extensive knowledge of historical harps into the class, asking each harpist to consider the type of harp in which the music was written for, before comparing the differences to the modern harp and adjusting musical ideas to fit the disadvantages and benefits of playing triple/double harp, or single action music on the modern instrument. His enthusiasm and passion for teaching provided a much needed fresh perspective on common repertoire.” – Cianah Harris


IMG_4393Visit to Guildhall School of Music and Drama, January 30th: “We had a fantastic day at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Dr Jo Hensel who  is Deputy Director of Woodwind Brass and Percussion and also plays with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, set up a series of classes for us to attend. Elder Con students Madeleine Stewart and Christopher Buckley acquitted themselves very well in the conducting class orchestra. It was a memorable day and a privilege for us to be so warmly welcomed and involved in a day at Guildhall.” – Elizabeth Koch

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Students from classical performance ( flute, clarinet, bassoon, percussion, saxophone, harp, violin and cello) have arrived in London to participate in a three unit study tour led by Associate Professor Elizabeth Koch AM. Tomorrow the course begins at the Royal Academy of Music, London with observation of a rehearsal of works by Stravinsky and Rimsky Korsakov with the Royal Academy […]

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Amber Watkins has received first place in the 4th Australian Marimba Competition. Competing in the under 22 years old category, Amber won the event held in early August 2017. “I didn’t really know what to expect walking in there. I had only ever competed in the Australian Percussion Eisteddfod at which I was one of the eldest. Here I was the […]

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Tom Hajdu is the Director of the Sia Furler Institute, and will be giving a keynote presentation at BigSound Festival and Conference on September 8 in Brisbane. The past 20 years has proven the music industry must look at our environment, analyse how external factors could affect us, and embrace change. In this session, Tom will look more broadly at how […]

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In 2017 the Elder Conservatorium of Music and the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra began collaborating on a Masters level conducting program. This collaboration, unique in the world of conductor training, aims to prepare students who aspire to be professional conductors working at the highest level. Students of the course have the opportunity to conduct the ASO in Masterclass situations and work […]

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The Elder Conservatorium of Music is holding an Open Day for strings! On Saturday, 12th August, join staff members of the Conservatorium for one of two masterclasses, a Q and A session and an open rehearsal of Holt’s St Paul’s Suite. There is no charge for students attending or performing at the Open Day, but registration is essential. Please see below […]

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The Elder Conservatorium of Music is holding an Open Day for brass, woodwind and percussion! On Saturday, 5th August, join staff members of the Conservatorium for a set of masterclasses, a Q and A session and an open Wind Orchestra rehearsal. There is no charge for students attending or performing at the Open Day, but registration is essential. Please see […]

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Congratulations to Associate Professor Elizabeth Koch, Head of Classical and Performance and Woodwind Studies, who has been made a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, UK. Elizabeth joins Dr Joy McEntree, School of Humanities, as the University’s first HEA Senior Fellows. To learn more about the Fellowship, please visit the HEA website.

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