Virginia Comerford holding viola
2022, 2016, 2016 Singapore, 2015 India

Virginia Comerford


Principal Viola and Section Leader – Opera Australia Orchestra; Former Principal Viola – Australian Youth Orchestra; Former Principal Viola – Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra

Australian Hometown(s): Newcastle & Sydney
Education: Sydney Conservatorium High School

Born in Newcastle NSW, Virginia studied a multitude of instruments before settling on viola as her primary instrument, completing her studies with Peter Pfuhl, then Principal Viola with the Sydney Symphony. She gained experience as Principal Viola at National Music Camps and the Australian Youth Orchestra, then at age 19 was appointed Associate Principal Viola with the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra. She also performed regularly with the Sydney Symphony, Australian Chamber Orchestra, The Tasmanian Symphony and the contemporary ensemble The Seymour Group.

Virginia left in 1994 to pursue a career in Europe, spending time first in Italy and then The Netherlands, where she performed with the Radio Filharmonisch Orkest, Radio Symfonie Orkest, Nederlands Kamer Orkest, Nieuw Sinfonietta Amsterdam, I Fiamminghi Chamber Orchestra in Belgium and with the Salzburg Soloists. She toured to Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Turkey, Germany and Ireland.

Also interested in singing, Virginia combined her professional viola career with vocal training and in 1997 was awarded a Queen Elizabeth Scholarship to pursue her vocal studies in London. Virginia returned to Sydney in 2001 and was appointed to her current position of Principal Viola with the Opera Australia Orchestra in 2010. She regularly performs chamber music, has performed for the Melbourne Digital Concert Hall and has been a member of AWO since 2015.

Last updated 2022