Andrew Jezek

Australian Hometown(s): Canberra & Sydney
Education: Canberra School of Music; Hochschule für Musik, Munich

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Andrew Jezek was born in Canberra and studied viola at the Canberra School of Music with Vincent Edwards and Charmian Gadd, graduating with honours in 1991. He continued his studies in Europe at the Hochschule für Musik in Munich with Jürgen Weber (viola) and at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst in Vienna with Karl Österreicher (conducting). He was co-principal violist of the renowned Viennese contemporary music ensemble Klangforum Wien from 1996 to 2013 and has performed at most major contemporary music festivals in Europe. He was a regular guest at the Salzburg Festival, Ruhr Triennale, Donaueschinger Musiktage, Wien Modern, Steirischer Herbst Graz, Wittener Tage, Wiener Festwochen, Berlin Festival, Venice Biennale and the Huddersfield Festival.

In 2013, Andrew relocated to Sydney with his wife Emma and daughter Lila.

Andrew now performs regularly with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, the Australian Chamber Orchestra, as guest principal viola with Opera Australia Orchestra.

Last updated 2020

Huw Jones

Australian Hometown: Brisbane
Education: Sydney Conservatorium of Music; Royal College of Music, London

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Huw Jones has been Principal Oboe of the Queensland Symphony Orchestra since 2013. He has has appeared as an oboist with every major symphony orchestra in Australia and New Zealand, as well as Guest Principal Oboe with the Australia Chamber Orchestra, Irish Chamber Orchestra, and the Opera Australia Orchestra.

Huw graduated from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music with First-Class Honours, and later continued studies in London at the Royal College of Music. During this time in London Huw toured extensively with the Philharmonia Orchestra. As well as playing in QSO, he regularly appears as a chamber musician with the Australia Ensemble and Ensemble Q.

Huw plays a Marigaux M2 oboe and plays reeds by K.GE Reeds.

Last updated 2020

Scott Kinmont

Australian Hometown(s): Brisbane & Sydney
Education: Queensland Conservatorium of Music; Australian National University, Canberra; Northwestern University, Chicago

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Since winning the position of Associate Principal Trombone with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra at the age of 20, Scott Kinmont has established himself as one of Australia’s leading brass players and teachers. He was previously Principal Trombone of the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and he has performed with orchestras throughout Australasia and in Europe, and is a member of the Australian World Orchestra.

As a soloist, he holds the unusual distinction of winning international solo competitions on both the trombone and the euphonium – the UMI International Trombone Competition in the US in 1993 and the Tubamania International Euphonium Competition held in Australia in 1999. He has appeared as a soloist with brass bands, orchestras and big bands, and in 2008 he made his debut as a soloist with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, performing Lee Bracegirdle’s Euphonium Concerto, written for him.

An enthusiastic chamber musician, he is a member of the Australian Brass Quintet and has performed with many of Australia’s leading chamber and contemporary music ensembles. A founding member of the Sydney Ophicleide Quartet and the New Holland Sackbut Ensemble, he has also performed and directed original instrument ensembles on sackbut (Renaissance trombone), serpent and ophicleide. He has also embarked on a conducting career, conducting the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra Brass Ensemble in 2017.

Scott Kinmont has held teaching posts at Sydney University, Canberra School of Music and Sydney Conservatorium, was guest lecturer in euphonium at Northwestern University in Chicago (2012–13) and is currently on the faculty of the Australian National Academy of Music in Melbourne.

Born in Brisbane, he initially studied with James Hartingdon through the Queensland Education Department Instrumental Programme, before continuing studies at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music with Arthur Middleton. He concluded his studies at the Australian National University in Canberra with Michael Mulcahy, and subsequently completed a Master of Music degree at Northwestern University with Michael Mulcahy and Charles Vernon. He has also undertaken studies with current and former members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic and Los Angeles Philharmonic.

Last updated 2022

Semra Lee-Smith

Australian Hometown: Perth
Education: University of Western Australia Conservatorium of Music; Conservatorium van Amsterdam, Sweelinck Academy

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY

Semra Lee-Smith was born in Malaysia and commenced violin lessons aged 3 with her mother, Hooi Tong Lee. She gained her Bachelor of Music degree at the WA Conservatorium of Music, studying with Pal Eder. Semra also holds a Postgraduate Diploma from the Sweelinck Conservatorium, studying with Istvan Parkanyi. She undertook string quartet studies with the Halcyon String Quartet at the Australian National Academy of Music and at the Banff Centre for the Arts, Canada. Tutors included Hatto Beyerle, the Arditti Quartet and David Takeno. In 2000, Semra won a position with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra.

Semra started in a tutti position with WASO in 2003 and was appointed Associate Principal 2nd Violin in 2004. In 2009, she won the Assistant Concertmaster job and has been the Acting Associate Concertmaster since 2014. She appeared as Guest Concertmaster with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra in concerts for the 2019 MONA FOMA.

She is sought after as a chamber musician and is a founding member of the Darlington Piano Trio and Darlington String Quartet, core ensembles for Darlington Concerts, created in 2003. Collectively, they form the Darlington Ensemble and are Ensemble in Residence at UWA’s Conservatorium of Music. The trio commissioned James Ledger’s “Inscriptions” and recorded Roger Smalley’s piano trio for UWA’s centenary celebrations “Luminosity” CD. In 2018, the Darlington String Quartet commissioned and premiered James Ledger’s 3rd String Quartet, “Menace and Appeal”. Other notable chamber music partners have included Brett Dean, Ashley Smith and Myron Romanul.

Semra has featured regularly in the Soft Soft Loud chamber music series and as the leader of the new music ensemble, Etica. Semra’s versatility as a performer has seen her record Troy Roberts’ jazz quartet/string quartet “Xenden Suite”, back Tex Perkins and Tim Rogers at the Big Day Out and feature as a soloist with WASO. 2020 saw her premiere Simon Kruit’s “Disconnects” with the Darlington String Quartet and record Emma Jayakumar’s Bell Birds Suite, a new commission from the ABC. In addition, she is a lecturer in violin at UWA and is also an AMEB examiner.

Last updated 2021

Peter Luff

Australian Hometown: Perth
Education: Elder Conservatorium; University of Adelaide

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Associate Professor Peter Luff is the Deputy Director (Performance and Engagement) at Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University (QCGU and is Vice President of the International Horn Society.

Peter regularly performs with chamber music specialists Ensemble Q, he was a founding member of the Southern Cross Soloists and has performed with many of the Australian orchestras and ensembles in Australia and overseas.

For NRF’s Brisbane end of year event Peter will present an entertaining performance with a trio of French hornists which delves into the history of the instrument from its early beginnings as a “hunting horn” to its key role in classical music repertoire today. The presentation style performance will be musically interesting and a refreshing departure from the traditional string quartet style of classical music entertainment.

Last updated 2018

Katherine Lukey

Australian Hometown: Melbourne
Education: Australian National Academy of Music; Universität für Musik und Darstellend Kunst, Graz

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Katherine Lukey is Deputy Concertmaster at the Opera Australia Orchestra, a position she has held since 2016. She is also a member of the Australian World Orchestra and frequently performs as a guest violinist with the Australian Chamber Orchestra. Katherine has also served as Assistant Concertmaster of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and Principal 1st Violin of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.

As a soloist, Katherine has appeared with the Queensland Symphony, Melbourne Chamber, Metropolitan, Sydney Conservatorium, and Darwin Symphony Orchestras.  She won the Hephzibah Menuhin and Kendall Violin Competitions and was an ABC Young Performers Award string finalist.  In January 2017 Katherine performed as Guest Principal 2nd Violin with the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Other guest principal appearances include Orchestra Victoria, Auckland Philharmonia, and West Australian, Tasmanian, and Adelaide Symphony Orchestras. Katherine was formerly a member of the Verbier Festival Orchestra.

An Australian National Academy of Music alum, Katherine completed her Masters with Alice Waten (Sydney Conservatorium).  Other teachers include Tibor Varga and Silvia Marcovici (University of Music, Graz), and William Hennessy (University of Melbourne).

When not playing violin, Katherine indulges in her other passion: training for triathlons.

Last updated 2018

Kirsty McCahon

Australian Hometown: Sydney
Education: Victorian College of the Arts

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
From the Brodsky Quartet to the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Musica Viva to Halcyon, Australian Festival of Chamber Music to Mornington Peninsula Festival , Les Talents Lyrique to  L’Arpeggiata,  Kirsty relishes her musical collaborations with extraordinary musicians in all styles and forms.

Born in Carnarvon WA, Kirsty’s musical adventures include extensive performing, recording and touring throughout Europe with ensembles as diverse as Ensemble Itineraire , Orchestre Revolutionnaire et Romantique and ELISION.

Former Principal Double Bass of the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra for 20 years, Kirsty is Australia’s leading practitioner of Historical Performance Practice on the double bass and violone. Kirsty is the Principal Bass of Pinchgut, Brisbane Baroque and the Orchestra of The Antipodes.

A member of the Australian World Orchestra, Kirsty featured as a soloist with the AWO in the 2016 world premier of Elena Kats-Chernin’s Concerto for 8 basses.

Awarded a Churchill Fellow in 2001, Kirsty has been recognized as an Honorary Fellow at the University of Melbourne for Services to Orchestral Music.

An enthusiastic educator, Kirsty devotes extensive time delivering Masterclasses and workshops to inspire and support young women and girl. In 2014 she was an invited mentor at the inaugural Sydney ‘Women of the World” conference.

Last updated 2018

Belinda McFarlane

Australian Hometown: Adelaide
Education: Elder Conservatorium

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Belinda studied at the Elder Conservatorium, Adelaide university. Joining AYO in 1984, she became Leader in 1988 for the orchestra’s Grand Bicentennial European Tour, culminating in a Prom concert at the Royal Albert Hall, London. She liked it so much she stayed!

As a member of the London Symphony Orchestra and Fiorini piano trio Belinda performs regularly throughout the world. She is a dedicated member of the LSO’s Discovery team teaching and workshop leading with playing and non-playing musicians of all ages and ability in London and abroad. Most notably as a lead instigator on the Take A Bow project in London and Paris, preparing string players of all abilities to perform alongside the LSO at the Barbican and Salle Pleyel, and the LSO’s On Track programme which included training an orchestra of East London school children to perform Elgar’s ‘Nimrod’ at the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 London Olympics.

In 2013 she appeared in a Channel 4 documentary as an LSO mentor for the ‘Addicts’ Orchestra’. A Director of the LSO, she also sits on the orchestra’s Education Liaison Committee. With Fiorini she has led chamber music masterclasses and music workshops in schools and communities in the UK, France, Australia and Zimbabwe and is a teacher of string chamber music at the Junior Guildhall of Music and Drama. Belinda enjoys returning to Australia to work for the AYO and to perform as a member of the Australian World Orchestra – for which she is also their Youth Education Programme Advisor.
Belinda graduated from Elder Conservatorium, Adelaide University with a First Class Honours degree, and plays a on a Giuseppe Fiorini violin.

Last updated 2018

Marcus Michelsen

Australian Hometown: Sydney
Education: Sydney Conservatorium of Music (pre-college program); Nicole Masters; Kasia Hans Rosenbaum

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
Marcus started playing the violin when he was 5 years old. In 2018 he won the Australian Bach Society’s Award for best Bach performance in the Melbourne Recital Hall’s Bach Competition.

In 2019 he received the Jury Prize at the Gisborne International Music Competition.
He joined the Sydney Youth Orchestras in 2011, and has since 2018, (at age 15) and until 2020 been concertmaster for the Sydney Youth Orchestra (Flagship,) making Marcus the youngest concertmaster ever for the Sydney Youth Orchestra.

At age 9 he auditioned successfully to participate in the Aspen Music Festival and School
(AMFS) in the USA and has attended this intense classical music camp/festival every year since. There he has been part of the Aspen Festival Orchestra performing alongside musicians from Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonics and other leading orchestras, under the leadership of Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s concertmaster Robert Chen, and featuring soloists such as Joshua Bell, Sarah Chang, Midori, Augustin Hadelich and Gil Shaham.
Also, at the AMFS, for chamber music, Marcus has worked with members of the Takacs, Pacifica and The American string quartets and for his solo performance training, with his main teacher Prof Paul Kantor (Juilliard/Dorothy DeLay) and masterclasses with violinist Robert McDuffie.

For the past couple of years Marcus has been part of the Australian Youth Orchestra. In early 2019 Marcus was associate concertmaster for the AYO Weiss Chamber Orchestra, led by Dale Barltrop (concertmaster for the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.)

During the past few years, Marcus has been fortunate to also receive lessons and/or collaborate with prominent violinists/pedagogues such as Andrew Haveron (concertmaster Sydney Symphony Orchestra,) Miriam Fried (Boston NEC,) Robin Wilson (Australian National Academy of Music,) cello soloist Erick Kim, Ohad (Udi) Bar-David (principal cellist Chicago Symphony Orchestra,) John Harding (previous concert master London Symphony Orchestra and Sydney Symphony Orchestra,) Robert Hanford and Michael Barenboim.

In early 2019 he successfully auditioned to become the associate concertmaster for the Femusc (Santa Catarina, Brazil) music festival and school’s top orchestra, under the leadership of Leon Spierer (previous concertmaster Berliner Philharmonics/Herbert von Karajan.)

From age 8 to 16 Marcus was part of the Rising Stars (Sydney Conservatorium of Music pre-college program) where his main teacher was Prof. Ole Bohn.

Current main teachers are Nicole Masters (SSO) and Kasia Hans Rosenbaum.

Last updated 2021

David Montgomery

Australian Hometown(s): Brisbane
Education: Sydney Conservatorium of Music

PROFESSIONAL BIOGRAPHY
David has been Principal Percussion of the Queensland Symphony Orchestra since 1994. He has worked with many of the nations leading orchestras and manages his time between performing, composing and teaching.

As a composer, he has been commissioned by Opera Queensland, Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Isorhythmos and ABC Radio National. David has also worked as a sound designer and composer for the Queensland Theatre Company and La Boite Theatre on productions such as A Streetcar Named Desire, Heroes and Walking By Apple Tree Creek. His most recent work Fergal Onions, music to the children’s story of the same name by Australian author/illustrator John Harrison, was performed by the Queensland Symphony Orchestra in 2017.

David is presently completing a doctorate in music with a focus on percussion pedagogy.  His composition work has been dedicated to this area over the past few years. In 2013 he completed work on a new percussion syllabus for the Australian Music Examinations Board. He was a finalist in the category of Award for Excellence by an Individual in the 2014 APRA Art Music Awards for this work.

David is the Artistic Director of Isorhythmos percussion ensemble and editor of Isorhythmos Publications. The ensemble comes together on a project by project basis and will be touring regionally in Queensland in 2018 to Longreach and Mount Isa.

David taught at the Queensland Conservatorium between 1998 and 2012 and now teaches at The University of Queensland developing a new percussion program there. He has also been a guest teacher at the Australian National Academy of Music. He is an active and passionate educator and works regularly within the school environment conducting workshops and participating in performance programs. In 2018 he will run a percussion-based music education project in regional Queensland involving around 350 students from the Longreach area.

Combining his experience as a composer, performer and teacher, David continues to work on developing concepts for the learning and teaching of percussion from beginner to professional performer.

Last updated 2018