UNE to host 2nd Australasian Piano Summer School

Published 18 August 2009

piano1The Second Australasian Piano Summer School, to be held at the University of New England next January, will build on the success of the inaugural Australasian Piano Summer School at UNE in January 2008.

The five-day Summer School, running from the 11th to the 15th of January 2010, will bring together talented teenage pianists and leading music educators from around Australia.

Kawai Australia is supporting the Summer School by providing 20 upright pianos for students to use for practice, as well as five grand pianos.

UNE’s Dr Terrence Hays, the Artistic Coordinator of the Summer School, said that it was designed for high-school students in Years 10, 11 and 12. “Our aim is to identify and mentor young musicians in the years before they enter tertiary education,” he said.

Joining Dr Hays in the team leading the Summer School  will be Dr Christine Logan from the University of NSW, Professor Peter Roennfeldt from Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Glen Riddle from the Victorian College of the Arts, Jody Heald from the Australian Music Examinations Board, and Professor Jennie Shaw from UNE. Professor Michael Leslie from the Richard Strauss Conservatory of Music in Munich, Germany, will be the artist in residence. Professor Leslie will lead the masterclass program and give a public recital.

As well as piano masterclasses, the Summer School program will include individual lessons, workshops on improvisation, composition, interpretation, accompanying and ensemble playing, choir practice, sessions on coping with stress and anxiety in performance, and classes for students of other keyboard instruments including harpsichord, and organ.

Dr Hays said that a further aim of the Summer School was “to establish a collaborative research forum for studying aspects of keyboard performance”.

Participants will live at one of UNE’s residential colleges during the Summer School and have access to rehearsal pianos during the week. The organisers expect that some partial scholarships will be made available to help disadvantaged students living in rural and remote areas to participate. Applications close on the 19th of October.

For more information contact Dr Terrence Hays on (02) 6773 3649.

THE PHOTOGRAPH displayed here shows Blake Entwisle and Elizabeth Gressler practising during the inaugural Australasian Piano Summer School in January 2008.