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In preparing these blog posts, I have enlisted the support of four highly-valued colleagues who generously shared their observations on many of the issues I have raised.


Ros Dunlop is an independent Australian music practitioner with over thirty years’ experience. She is a clarinettist, researcher, teacher, writer and advocate for the cause of new music for clarinet. She was a part-time teacher at Sydney Conservatorium of Music for 26 years. Now in her private studio, she prepares students at all levels for examinations and assessments every year. She is also a woodwind examiner for the Australian Music Examinations Board in NSW and has presented masterclasses, composer workshops and forums on music and politics in Australia and internationally. She is also a founding member of the Charisma Ensemble and has given solo and chamber music recitals around the world. She has produced a number of solo CDs featuring clarinet works by Australian composers and was awarded a PhD for her research into the traditional music of Timor-Leste.


David Howie studied piano with Sonya Hanke and Gordon Watson and then specialised in Accompaniment, studying with David Miller at Sydney Conservatorium of Music and Paul Hamburger at the Royal Academy of Music in London. He now lectures in the Collaborative Piano Division at the Conservatorium. David has performed throughout Europe, America and Australia with a wide range of instrumentalists and vocalists and has given numerous studio recordings for BBC Radio, Radio Luxembourg, the ABC and 2MBS-FM. In 2012 he joined up with saxophonist Michael Duke to form HD Duo, which has so far commissioned and recorded 31 new works composed for the duo. He is currently President of the Accompanists’ Guild of NSW.


Jo Allan is a noted Australian pianist, much in demand for her exceptional chamber music and ensemble playing. She regularly collaborates with leading singers and instrumentalists in recitals and recordings. She has also performed with groups such as the Australia Ensemble, the Song Company, the Seymour Group and Alpha Ensemble. Jo has a wide-ranging freelance career as an Accompanist/Coach and was appointed to the staff of Sydney Conservatorium of Music in the formative years of its Collaborative Piano Division. She has been the Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s Principal Keyboard, Sydney Philharmonia Choir’s Principal Accompanist and pianist for Gondwana Choirs.


Geoff Collins studied at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music with Victor McMahon and Margaret Crawford. In 1975 his winning of the First National Flute Competition established him as one of the foremost instrumentalists of his generation.In 1982 he was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to undertake further study in Europe.  He has held the positions of Associate Principal in the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and Principal Flute in the Australian Chamber Orchestra. He has recently concluded his tenure as Principal Flute with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and has a long-standing association with the Australia Ensemble, University of New South Wales. He has appeared as guest artist and teacher at the Australian National Academy of Music (Melbourne) and has been a member of faculty at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and the Elder Conservatorium of Music (The University of Adelaide). Geoff has also been a member of many of Australia’s leading contemporary music groups, such as Flederman, and has recorded three volumes of Australian flute works, many of them commissioned especially for him.

Jo Allan
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