Christina Leonard

Australian Hometown: Sydney
Education: Sydney Conservatorium of Music; Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Christina Leonard is one of Australia’s leading saxophonists and was the Artistic Director of the 2018 CLASSIC STOMP and AWO’s Chamber Music Festival in the NSW Southern Highlands. Christina plays regularly with both the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and the Australian Opera Orchestra and has performed orchestrally in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Malaysia and in Hobart as a soloist with the Tasmania Symphony Orchestra. Christina has also performed with the ACO, the Song Company, Match Percussion, Synergy, and the Sonic Art Ensemble.

Christina regularly features in the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra’s Noel Noel concert series, and was a soloist in the Elena Kats-Chernin commission to celebrate the ABO’s 25th Anniversary.  Christina premiered her own transcription of CPE Bach’s Concerto in A minor Wq 170 with the ABO in their Vivaldi Unwired season this year. She has made many recordings and live broadcasts for ABC Classic FM and Fine Music FM.  Christina has premiered newly commissioned music with Marshall McGuire at the Utzon Room Chamber music series at the Opera House and will record a CD of this and other new music later in the year. Christina has recently recorded a CD of Saxophone and Piano repertoire with Tamara-Anna Cislowska

Christina was awarded a Queens Trust Scholarship to complete a postgraduate degree at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London. Christina completed her Masters of Music (Performance) at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and has been lecturing Saxophone, examining and facilitating workshops and classes there since 1996. Christina’s transcriptions of Baroque music for Saxophone and keyboard, are included on the current AMEB and ABRSM, (London) Syllabi.

Christina continues to champion opportunities for classical Saxophone commissions and performances and is the first Australian to be endorsed as an International Artist with Japanese instrument maker Yanagisawa.

Last updated 2018

Nicholas Russoniello

Australian Hometown: Sydney
Education: University of Sydney

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Nick Russoniello, one of Australia’s most dynamic young artists, enjoys an exciting and varied performance career both in Australia and abroad. Nick has been the recipient of a number of major awards including the ABC Symphony Australia Young Performer of the Year Award and the Fine Music Kruger Scholarship. Nick has appeared as a soloist with the Adelaide, Canberra, Queensland, Melbourne and Sydney Symphony Orchestras.

Nick appears as a guest musician with Australia’s leading ensembles, these include the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Australian World Orchestra, Opera Australia Orchestra, Acacia Quartet, Omega Ensemble, and Sydney Camerata. He is a sought-after chamber musician and performs regularly as a member of Continuum Sax, Duo Histoire and the Golden Age Quartet. 

Alongside his performance achievements Nick’s original compositions for saxophone have been performed internationally, including at the recent world saxophone congress in Zagreb, Croatia. In 2019 Nick composed a new original film score to Charlie Chaplin’s The Immigrant and recorded his third studio album for release in 2020. Nick recently toured Europe presenting his original compositions at the Royal College of Music (London), Conservatorio Di Musica G. Verdi (Italy) and was a guest composer in residence at Strasbourg Conservatoire (France). Nick is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Sydney and is a Yamaha Australia artist, D’addario Woodwind artist and an associate artist of The Australian Music Centre. 

Last updated 2020