The Wendy Ireland Award for Young Cellists

25th May - 10:00 am - 12:30 pm
Newcastle Conservatorium of Music, Newcastle NSW

The Wendy Ireland Award

for young cellists

Saturday 25th May, 10am

Newcastle Conservatorium of Music

Laman St, Newcastle

The Newcastle Branch is proud to present the inaugural Wendy Ireland award for young cellists in 2019. Wendy Ireland was a leading Australian teacher, pedagogue, cellist and composer who devoted much of her career to the teaching of young musicians in Newcastle, many alumni who are now in significant music positions and orchestras around the world. Wendy developed successful programs at the Newcastle Conservatorium, Newcastle Grammar School and more recently at Queenwood School for Girls.

Competitors are required to perform in a live audition (maximum performance time is 12 minutes, one or two works of own choice), and must be 18 years or younger at the time of performance (recommended minimum 5th grade or equivalent). Audience attendance is free.

Competitor Registrations: www.trybooking.com/ZQVR

Mind Your Meter with Andrea Calilhanna

2nd Jun - 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Inala School, Cherrybrook NSW

Andrea Meter Workshop Registration Form

Andrea M. Calilhanna

MMus Grad.Dip.T(Mus) DipMus LMusA AMusA FCSME

The Mind Your Meter workshop is aimed primarily but not exclusively at private music studio teachers wishing to learn more about teaching modern meter theory. Andrea will present a sequence of materials based on the recent redefinition of meter as “an inclusionally related set of distinct, notionally isochronous time point sets” (Cohn, 2018). Cohn’s approach also acknowledges that musical meter is located in the listener who responds to sound through the projection of pulses in the mind and entrainment of pulses in the body (Calilhanna, 2018a). The materials will demonstrate how visualizations and sonifications of meter and rhythm, through ski-hill and cyclic graphs, can deepen learning experiences for students as they grow in their understanding of the connections with music and mathematics. The workshop will be conducted with a relaxed, discussion-based approach, so that we can `have a conversation’ about the materials as we work through them and explore ways modern meter theory can be applied in the private music studio.

Date:    Sunday 2nd June, 2019

Time:     1.00pm to 5.00pm

Venue:   Inala School, Castle Hill Road, Cherrybrook

Fees:       $40 MEMBERS AND $55 NON-MEMBERS


Registrations close 17th May, 2019 – No late registrations can be accepted

Nuggets of Wisdom for Pianists with Slobodan Zivkovic

28th Jul - 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
The Music Room, Killara NSW

Slobodan Workshop Registration Form

Drawing on his long piano teaching and performance career, Slobodan Zivkovic will unravel the mysteries of how to lay the foundation of good piano playing by understanding the underlying technical issues that confront the performer and how to resolve those various issues.

There will be an emphasis on scale playing to address such areas as how to avoid stiffness and how to increase speed; how to produce staccato and legato; the correct use of the thumb; dynamics in scale playing; the “breathing of hands” during play; playing double notes, octaves and chords and most importantly, how to practice. All these elements will be discussed and demonstrated. Understanding these issues will lead to improved overall performance. Some examples will be taken from the AMEB Piano Technical Workbook.

After discussion of technical issues and with examples from all periods, there will be a discussion on how to sight read and practice with counting aloud as an indispensable tool; the correct approach to a new piece including such rhythmic elements as two quavers against triplet quavers, the best approach to dynamics and tempo, how to perform rests and how to approach the fermata.

Lastly, Slobodan will talk about David Tong and Andrey Gugnin two interesting pianists who had different outcomes and finally he will discuss the difficulty that can be encountered in teaching young students of very ambitious parents.

Teachers are encouraged to bring along any piece they wish to have discussed and on registration, will be sent a list of pieces that will be used during the session.


Date:    Sunday 28th July, 2019

Time:     1.00pm to 5.00pm

Venue:   The Music Room, 131 Fiddens Wharf Road, Killara

Fees:       $40 MEMBERS AND $55 NON-MEMBERS


Registrations close 12th July, 2019 – No late registrations can be accepted

The MTA acknowledges the generous sponsorship of Pamela Hinde

MTA of NSW Piano Scholarships sponsored by the Newcastle branch

17th Aug - 10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Newcastle Conservatorium of Music, Newcastle NSW

MTA NSW Piano Scholarships

sponsored by the Newcastle Branch

Saturday 17th August 2019, 10am to 1pm

Harold Lobb Concert Hall, Newcastle Conservatorium of Music

Laman St, Newcastle

The Piano Scholarships include the awarding of both the Nan Price Memorial Scholarship and the Joyce Blewitt Award, providing two competitive sections for young pianists. Nan Price was a renowned pianist, teacher and examiner who performed often as an accompanist and was an exceptional sight-reader. A graduate of the Conservatorium of Music in Sydney, Price went on to teach at the Conservatorium of Music in Newcastle, having lived there as a child. Following the establishment of Newcastle’s branch of the Music Teachers’ Association of NSW, Price conducted numerous workshops and masterclasses for the association, which were highly sought after amongst the music community. Her explicit teaching and high standards were key to the success of the workshops. Price was also well-respected for her expertise in performing works by Beethoven. In Price’s legacy, the Music Teachers’ Association of NSW (Newcastle Branch) established an annual award in her name, awarding over twenty successful recipients since her passing. Alumni of the award include pianists Frances Ross, Michael Power, William Cesta and Nicholas Kennedy who have all gone on to pursue careers in music. In 2019, The Music Teachers’ Association of NSW is proud to present the piano scholarships as part of the Newcastle Music Festival program. Details of the two divisions and performance requirements are available via the Newcastle Music Festival and MTA NSW websites. The Music Teachers’ Association of NSW will welcome a guest pianist, Maria Raspopova to adjudicate the competition and announce the award winners for 2019. Attendance is free and all members of the public are welcome.

For entrant registration, visit: www.trybooking.com/ZQVR
For more information, contact Michael Power (michael.power@live.com.au)

Jazzin' it up - it's easier than you think! - with Julie Spithill

15th Sep - 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Adlib Music, Willoughby NSW

Julie Spithill Jazz Workshop Registration Form

Julie Spithill has for many years, taught jazz techniques to classical trained pianists (and emerging jazz pianists), both at the Conservatorium of Music Sydney and in her private studio.

This workshop, adaptable to all instruments including voice, aims to provide you with ideas and techniques using the musical language you already know such as intervals, scales and chords and rhythm to enable you to confidently ‘jazz it up’- and also help you interpret jazz speak as well. For example: Classical musicians would say, “Some musicians in our chamber ensemble are coming to a rehearsal to try out their technical abilities on a contemporary composition that has some interesting ostinato phrases.” Jazz musicians would say, “Some cats in our combo are coming to a jam session to try out their chops on a happening chart that has some cool riffs.”

Topics covered will include modes -and how to use them; chords and extensions; chord progressions; analysing a jazz lead sheet and basic improvisation techniques.

Come armed with questions – or send them along in advance – there will be ample time for discussion and lots of handouts to assist with creative ideas and practical issues.


Music Teacher Festival

11th Oct - 8:30 am - 5:30 pm
Hunter Valley Grammar School, Ashtonfield

Music Teacher Festival

Friday 11th October, 8.30am-5.30pm

Hunter Valley Grammar School

Norfolk St, Ashtonfield (East Maitland)

Upskill your teaching and join a number of guest presenters who will lead hands on workshops, forums and seminars in repertoire, pedagogy and industry specific topics for the instrumental music teacher.

Save the date! Program details and online registration information to follow.

Registrations will be available online: www.trybooking.com/ZQVR

Christmas Luncheon

24th Nov - 12:30 pm - 3:30 pm
The Grand Pittwater Conference Centre North Ryde RSL Club, North Ryde NSW