2015 Cairns Winter Music School dates

JUNE 29TH – JULY 2nd


  • Schubert: Overture in the Italian Style
  • Rodrigo: Guitar Concerto – Concierto de Aranjuez
  • Faure: Pavane
  • Haydn: Symphony No 101 The Clock


Our Conductor – Mark Eager


Mark is an exciting conductor with a wide breadth of knowledge in the orchestral field. Underpinning this is his 25 years of experience as a world-class player. Mark is Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of The Welsh Sinfonia. His clear, highly musical direction and his consummate grasp of musical idioms have developed the ensemble over the past few years into Wales’s finest chamber orchestra. Mark is a champion of high quality music education and was appointed Conductor of Cardiff University Symphony Orchestra in 2008. He constantly enjoys the thrill of inspiring students and is often praised for his mature understanding, thoughtful musicianship and command of the orchestra. Mark tours extensively worldwide and enjoys annual residencies in Sydney, Melbourne, Tasmania and of course Cairns where the CWMS orchestra is enjoying great success.


Our soloist – Saki Kato


Saki started learning the guitar at the age of three and from the age of eight she studied with Shin-ichi Fukuda, one of Japan’s most famous guitar maestros. At the age of eleven she was the first ever Japanese winner of the youth solo competition in the Guitar Foundation of America Competition with a perfect 100% score from each of the judges. She has studied internationally – at the Chigianna Music Academy in Italy with Oscar Ghiglia and with William Kanengiser (USA), Eduardo Fernandes (Uruguay) and Berta Rojas (Paraguay) amongst other guitarists. Saki has been resident in Cairns for two years and in 2014 she performed the Castelnuovo-Tedesco Quintet for Guitar and String Quartet with the Palmerston Quartet. She first performed the Concierto de Aranjuez at the age of twelve and is looking forward to performing this work again with the 2015 CWMS orchestra.

Wind section leader – Stephen Robinson

Stephen is one of Australia’s leading oboists – having been Principal Oboe of Orchestra Victoria since 1985, and having held positions in the Queensland Theatre Orchestra and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. As a member of Australia’s acclaimed contemporary music ensemble Elision he has performed at festivals throughout the world. Stephen teaches oboe at the University of Melbourne and Monash University. He is a founding member of Melbourne Windpower, and has been an examiner for the Australian Music Examinations Board since 1997. As a tutor in the orchestral programs of The Australian Youth Orchestra, he has mentored many of our new generation of musicians

1st violin – Amy Stevens

Amy commenced her musical studies in regional NSW and is a graduate of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. She has presented several solo recitals and worked with a number of orchestras across NSW. In 2008, Amy attended the prestigious International Musician’s Seminar, Prussia Cove, UK as a soloist. After working abroad for a year with her string quartet, Quartet Australis, Amy settled in Cairns for several years where she performed as a soloist with several local groups before relocating back to NSW. In 2014 Amy moved to New Zealand to pursue her career further and currently works casually with the Auckland Philharmonia and Opus orchestras. Amy has been involved as a tutor with Cairns Winter Music School since its inception in 2012. Further details at

2nd violin – Sue Stitt

Sue grew up in the UK and studied violin with Brigid Kirkland- Wilson as part of a music education degree. She emigrated to Australia in 1985 and has been the strings specialist at Trinity Anglican School since 1993. Sue is a member of the professional Orchid Ensembles and for many years was the leader of the Cairns Concert Orchestra. She leads 2nd violins in the NQ Philharmonic as well as being the administrative director and 2nd violin leader of both the North Queensland Chamber Orchestra and the Palmerston Ensemble. Sue is the Director of Cairns Winter Music School.

Viola – Caroline Lloyd Doolan

Caroline has enjoyed a rich tapestry of performance and teaching over her career. Based in Townsville she was a founding member of the Barrier Reef Orchestra, where she has held the positions of Concert Master, Principal Viola and Principal Second as well as being a soloist. She is also part of StringsTropicana and has recently formed the AVIVA Quartet.
For the past 17 years, Caroline has run a successful multi string program with Education Queensland and teaches nearly 200 students annually the art of string playing. She has also written a number of orchestral works and solos for young string players.

Cello – Ivy Wu

Ivy studied the cello in France and graduated at the Conservatoire National de Rueil-Malmaison and the Conservatoire Superieur de Paris CNR with 1st Prize in cello and chamber music. During her studies in France she participated in numerous master classes and performed in various concert venues such as the Theatre de Champs-Elysee and the Radio France in Paris. Currently based in Townsville, Ivy teaches and directs several Instrumental Strings programs for Education Queensland. She remains active in the music scene and performs regularly with the Barrier Reef Orchestra and the AVIVA Quartet. She has also been the lead cellist in several North Queensland musical productions such as The Phantom of the Opera, Sweeney Todd and Hairspray. This will be Ivy’s third year as the cello leader in the Cairns Winter Music School.

2015 Course summary

The 2015 Winter Music School will follow a similar format to previous years. We will have intensive sectional rehearsals and then spend time perfecting this orchestra of players from across the country. It is expected that players will learn their music in advance of the course to enable Mark to work with us on aspects of musical interpretation and performance.
In 2015 we will introduce into our programme a preliminary concert in the Innisfail Shire Hall with the opportunity to spend time in a Rainforest location en route. Our Finale Concert will be held in the Cairns Centre of Contemporary Arts.

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