About

our staff

Meet the Music for Canberra Team – offering high quality music tuition in the heart of Braddon.

Our Office Staff

Dr Nicole Hammill

Artistic Co-Convenor

Violinist, Dr Nicole Hammill, has just arrived in Canberra, coming from the Mitchell Conservatorium in Bathurst where she had been the Strings Coordinator since 2018. For the previous 25 years, she lived in Queensland, performing with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra as soloist, concertmaster and, for five years, Principal First Violin. She was on staff at the Queensland Conservatorium for nearly twenty years, and also lectured at James Cook University, the Queensland University of Technology and the University of Southern Queensland.

 Born in Sydney, and attending the Sydney Conservatorium High School, Nicole studied in the USA where she attained three degrees in violin performance, including a Doctor of Musical Arts from Louisiana State University. She subsequently lectured at Southeastern Louisiana and West Virginia Universities before returning to Australia for a lectureship at James Cook University in Townsville. As a soloist and chamber musician, she has performed throughout the USA, eastern Australia and in Malaysia, including appearances with the QSO Chamber Players, the Australian Festival of Chamber Music, the Southern Cross Soloists and the Bangalow Music Festival

 In demand as an adjudicator for eisteddfodau and competitions, Nicole has been an AMEB strings examiner in Queensland since 2002, and in NSW since 2019. She has also undertaken study in counselling and psychology, attaining a Graduate Diploma of Counselling and a Graduate Certificate in Arts from UNE. Her principal interest lies in personality theory, and she is an accredited administrator of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, a popular and trusted personality assessment tool.

Rachel Gould

Artistic Co-Convenor

Rachel joins the Music for Canberra team with a wealth of experience having worked in the local Arts & Events industry for over 15 years. Rachel is a Bachelor of Music graduate from the ANU School of Music, where she studied Clarinet and Piano. She has performed professionally with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra and has worked as the Orchestra & Stage Manager for the Canberra Pops Orchestra and National Pops Orchestra. She currently works as stage manager at Llewellyn Hall.

Rachel has a extensive event experience having worked as Production & Operations Manager at the National Folk Festival and Production & Venue Manager for the Canberra International Music Festival. Rachel was part of the Centenary of Canberra program team within the ACT Chief Minister’s Department during the 2013 Centenary and also as Production Manager for the Opening Ceremony of the 2008 Pacific School Games. Rachel continues to enjoy regular freelance event opportuninties.

Rachel has a strong passion for Youth Music Education and has worked as the ACT Outreach Officer for Musica Viva Australia managing the ACT Musica Viva in Schools Program and Masterclass Series. Rachel has also previously worked as the Artistic Director of Young Music Society Summer School Program. Rachel also enjoyed working as a Clarinet & Piano teacher, taking students through Australian Examination Music Board (AMEB) exams and conducting multiple local school ensembles.

 

Peter Thomson – General Manager

Anup Shrestha – Finance and Administration Coordinator

Jerene Leong – Program, Events and Engagement Coordinator

Claire Holland – Marketing and Communications Coordinator

Hayley Manning – Customer Service Coordinator

Tahni Chan, Violin

Tahni moved to Canberra to study a Double degree in Music and Law at ANU. She was the concertmaster of Canberra Youth Orchestra and is currently employed as a violinist with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra and plays regularly with the Australian Youth Orchestra. She looks forward to sharing her love of the  violin with her students.

Ragnel Jansdotter, Violin

Ragnel is an experienced performer and teacher. She regularly plays with ensembles such as the Canberra Sinfonia and the Canberra Youth Orchestra. Ragnel enjoys teaching students of all ages and skill levels. She makes a point of tailoring her pedagogical approach to the individual requirements and abilities of each student, avoiding rote learning and ensuring a comprehensive understanding of music and violin technique.

Shirahni Mudaliar, Violin

Shirahni, a young Canberra musician, has been playing violin since the age of 6. Having completed her A Mus exam in 2017, she is currently studying a double degree of Music Performance and Languages at the Australian National University.Throughout her life she competed in a variety of competitions but finds the most enjoyment playing in ensembles, quartets, orchestras and teaching students that love music.

Matthew Witney

Matthew Witney, Violin

Matthew has over six years of teaching experience teaching both young children and adults. His teaching incorporates the Suzuki philosophy to maximise the playing potential of his students while imparting a sense of fun and important life skills. Matthew asked to learn to play violin from the age of four after he watched ‘Playschool Meets the Orchestra’. He learnt to play the violin in the Suzuki Philosophy before completing his AmusA (AMEB) diploma at the age of 13. He currently plays violin with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra and other local ensembles.

Rita Woolhouse, Cello

Rita attended the NSW Conservatorium of Music High School then enrolled in tertiary study, graduating with a DSCM in performance. She has performed in numerous Australian ensembles and orchestras including the John Gould String Quartet and the Majorian Ensemble. She has taught cello and chamber music for many years and worked as a strings examiner for the AMEB. Rita currently performs and teaches in Canberra and Illawara.

Thomas Powles, Cello

Thomas is a fourth-year music student at the ANU.  He is an experienced performer and composer, receiving multiple awards in the arts, music, and cello performance.  Thomas cares deeply about the long-term success of his students, and chooses to focus on approach, understanding, and musicality early-on, rather than simply covering techniques.  His goal is to help his students find joy in what they are doing, no matter their age or skill level.

Hayley Manning, Double Bass

Hayley Manning graduated from the Australian National University in 2018 with a Bachelor of Music and Science. Former Principal Double Bassist of the Canberra Youth Orchestra, Hayley now performs regularly with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra as of 2019. Hayley has only recently begun establishing her own teaching studio and works as a peripatetic music tutor at several schools around Canberra teaching double bass and electric bass.

Tom Sherringham, Guitar

Tom has been playing the guitar since age 7. Growing up in a musical family, he had a lot of exposure to live music and jam sessions from a young age.  Some of his performances include National Folk Festival, Multicultural Festival, Tropfest, 3 Minute Thesis, Cobargo and Major’s Creek Folk Festival, Enlighten Festival, International Film Festivals at New Acton, Art not Apart and Day of the Dead.He also helps run the Mixed Abilities Program (MAP) in Music for Canberra since 2019 and is in his final year at ANU studying for a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Performance.

Katie Cole, Ukulele

Katie Cole is an accomplished singer, multi-instrumentalist, composer, arranger, writer and music director who loves sharing her passion for music making with people of all ages and abilities: from beginner to advanced; from hobbyist to professional. She founded and directs a band, ‘The Ukeladies and the Men’, is conductor of ‘Andante Andante’ ABBA choir, and for many years was the director of the German Harmonie Choir in Narrabundah. Katie also assists her husband Toby in directing a number of Canberra children’s and youth choirs.

 

Dylan Slater, Guitar & Ukulele

Dylan first picked up the guitar aged 10 and was immediately hooked. After 17 years of playing, he is now in his final year of a Bachelor of Music at the Australian National University majoring in Jazz Performance and splits his time between studying, teaching, playing in local bands, community musicals and in wedding bands. Dylan can be seen around Canberra playing anything from jazz to indie rock, from to funk to bluegrass. Dylan has been teaching guitar for the last 10 years, and specialises in advanced improvisation, advanced picking techniques, and theory, as well as being accustomed to teaching beginners of all ages.

Abel Lawson, Guitar and Ukulele

Abel Lawson is a caring and patient teacher. Growing up in Tumut, NSW, Abel began playing the guitar when he was 13 years old. He started with electric guitar and after 3 years, he learnt classical guitar as well.

Abel likes seeing his students having fun while learning and playing the guitar. Abel impressed us with his musicianship, dedication, reliability and his thoughtful answers to our questions about how he approaches music education.

Barbara Jerjen, Flute, Recorder and Music Play Tutor

Acclaimed music teacher and performer Barbara Jerjen has been working with people of all ages and abilities for over 40 years. Her fields of expertise range from early childhood music education over individual tuition to leading ensembles and conducting orchestras. Over the past 20 years Barbara has been majorly involved in community music work and peripatetic music tuition at several schools in town. Barbara studied flute and recorder at the conservatory of Basel, as well as musicology, pedagogy, languages and cultural anthropology at the university of Basel, Switzerland.

Quinn Weber, Woodwind

Quinn is a local musician who started learning saxophone at 10 years old. After learning how to play the saxophone for a couple of years, he also pick up flute and clarinet. 

Quinn is currently in his third year of a Bachelor of Music at the Australian National University and hopes to use what he learns there to teach his students to be the best musicians they possibly can be. Quinn values both classical and jazz schools of playing and ensures his students are exposed to a wide variety of repertoire covering various genres.

Brass & Percussion

Kapil Bhuta, Drum Kit & Hand Drumming

Kapil Bhuta is a student in ANU and has been drumming for 10 years in Sydney, Singapore and Canberra. He enjoys performing and has been doing so consistently since young. His most accomplished performance is being on the drums with The Killers at the Formula One race in Singapore last year, in front of a 60,000 strong crowd.

In addition to drums, Kapil also plays the guitar, bass, piano, mandolin and the ukelele. He has been involved in a vast array of ensembles ranging from rock, soul, pop, acoustic, orchestral and jazz. Kapil loves to share his passion of music with all whom he interacts with.

Toby King, Drum Kit

Toby King has been playing drums for 20 years. 

He started teaching in Canberra 10 years ago and specialises in ergonomic drumming and musical creativity, on the drum kit and hand percussion. Toby strives to create a relaxed atmosphere for all his students and encourages creativity and musical freedom through technical development, theory and musical games.

Matthew Ricketts, Brass

Matthew is a passionate player of all things Brass. Specialising in trombone and trumpet, Matt plays with the Australian Wind Symphony and his styles range from classical to contemporary. Matt also teaches tuba, french horn and euphonium and has been involved with the Canberra musis scene for the past ten years. Matt is an experienced and patient tutor, and enjoys seeing his students have fun while learning an instrument. He believes that doing so will keep them motivated and practicing regularly.

Keyboard

Susan Reid, Piano

Originally from South Africa, Susan Reid has been a piano teacher for over 40 years, teaching children of all ages and adults. She is always pleased when her pupils enjoy their music. Her qualifications are LTCL (piano teaching), and B Mus (Honours in Ethnomusicology) from the University of Adelaide. She leads an adult church choir in Canberra, sometimes plays percussion with the National Capital Orchestra, and has taught piano with Music for Canberra since April 2019.

Vivenne Tran, Piano

Vivienne Tran began studying piano at the age of six under the tutelage of Laura Wong, before starting with Marie Cull in 2010. She gained her Associate Diploma of Performance in October 2018, and is currently studying for her Licentiate Diploma. Vivienne has been teaching students Preliminary and under for three years, and her main focus is to share her passion of music and performance with young children, as well as help them develop their technical ability and sense of musicality.

Linus Hanul Lee

Linus is an active pianist/organist. Linus graduated from the Australian National University with a classical piano performance major in 2018. In 2017, he became a Wesley music scholar, where he resumed his organ tuition. He attained the LMusA with distinction for the organ in 2019. Linus looks forward to working with many future musicians to share the joy of music making.

Vocal

Sarahlouise Owens, Voice

Sarahlouise Owens is a professional singer with over 30 years of performing experience. Spending several years overseas, she sang in many of Europe’s illustrious theatres and enjoyed success in a number of major national and international singing competitions. Sarahlou is currently teaching the Seasoned Voices choir groups in both Ainslie and Tuggeranong for Music for Canberra.

 

 

Mixed Abilities Program (MAP)

Tom Sherringham, MAP

Tom has been playing the guitar since age 7. Growing up in a musical family, he had a lot of exposure to live music and jam sessions from a young age.  Some of his performances include National Folk Festival, Multicultural Festival, Tropfest, 3 Minute Thesis, Cobargo and Major’s Creek Folk Festival, Enlighten Festival, International Film Festivals at New Acton, Art not Apart and Day of the Dead.He also helps run the Mixed Abilities Program (MAP) in Music for Canberra since 2019 and is in his final year at ANU studying for a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Performance.

Evan Buckley, MAP

Evan Buckley is a recording and performing artist, twice nominated as live voice of the year in the ACT (NLMAs 2018, 2019) who has toured internationally and recorded three studio albums with his band, The Burley Griffin.

Evan has worked in the disability sector since 2006 and in the MAP program at MFC since 2017.

 

 

Karim Camprovin Sanchez

Originally from Venezuela, Karim has been studying music since she was eight year old. Karim is a singer and music educator and is passionate about music therapy. She has a Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Music and she studied a postgraduate specialisation in Music Therapy where she discovered a passion for working with people with a disability to improve their wellbeing through music.

Matthew Armstrong

Matthew has trained as an early childhood teacher and community musician. He has worked as a music teacher and as a teacher of children with disabilities in primary schools. Matthew currently works with ACT Playgroups as a playgroup facilitator with families and children with disability. Matthew created the participatory street orchestra Drummers not Plumbers and has built musical instruments for Birrigai Outdoor School and Questacon Science Class.

Mandy Philipse

Mandy has been Camerata’s conductor for the last seven years and absolutely loves working with kids. She has been involved with MFC (formerly CYO Society and Canberra Youth Music) since she was eight years old and playing the violin and viola.

Lucy Macourt, Sinfonietta

Hailing from Sydney, violinist Lucy Macourt completed a Bachelor of Music (Performance) at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, studying with Dr Goetz Richter. She held the Matteson and Nancy Scholarship, the Kathleen and Allison Short Scholarship and a Sydney Scholars Award.Lucy is an alumni of the Australian Youth Orchestra and National Music Camp and has interned with the Opera Australia Orchestra.Lucy is an experienced music educator, having conducted and tutored string ensembles at primary and secondary schools across Sydney, as well as running her own private studio.

Jenny Higgs, String Ensemble

Growing up in Lithgow, NSW, Jenny always know that she will make music her career. After graduating from the Australian National University, Jenny pursues a path that combines music and education. Now a professional musician with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra and a teacher in Orana Steiner School, Jenny challenges her young students to explore works from the Baroque, Classical and Romantic eras, and contemporary works written for string ensembles. She also allows players to have the opportunity to consolidate and develop the technical skills they have learned in previous string ensemble groups and their additional individual tuition.

 

Tim Wickham, Peg Mantle Strings

Canberra violinist Tim Wickham has over thirty years of formal training, practice and performance experience. Tim graduated from the Canberra School of Music in 2005 and is a musician of the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. In addition to traditional violin techniques, Tim is also proficient in contemporary and improved electric- violin methods. 

Louis Sharpe, James McCusker Orchestra

Since Louis’ move to Canberra in 2018 he has been welcomed into teh local arts organisations to develop and add to the wonderful cultural landscape of the city. With orchestral education a passion of his, Louis is thrilled to be the conductor of the James McCusker Orchestra. Louis also performs in the percussion section of the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. Louis has also assisted at the Australian World Orchestra whilst undertaking his Masters in Orchestral Conducting at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.

Rowan Harvey-Martin, Canberra Youth Orchestra

Rowan graduated in violin with honours from the ANU School of Music. She was former first Principal First Violin with the Canberra Symphony Orchestra and has had extensive orchestral experience with the Australian Opera and Australian Ballet. Rowan studied orchestral conducting with Donald Hunsberger at the Eastman School of Music, New York. Rowan is currently Head of Orchestras at Canberra Girls Grammar School.

Sarahlouise Owens, Seasoned Voices Choir

Sarahlouise Owens is a professional singer with over 30 years of performing experience. Spending several years overseas, she sang in many of Europe’s illustrious theatres and enjoyed success in a number of major national and international singing competitions. Since her return to Australia, she has been teaching vocal technique and repertoire to students from a broad range of backgrounds; from absolute beginner adults and children, to more experienced tertiary music students and performers. Sarahlou is currently teaching the Seasoned Voices choir groups in both Ainslie and Tuggeranong for Music for Canberra.

Tobias Cole, Canberra Children’s Choir

Tobias Cole is an award-winning singer and conductor with a passion for quality ensemble performance and for creating pathways for children and adults to achieve this. He is a regular guest singer in one of Australia’s finest vocal groups, The Song Company and in 2014 established his own professional ensemble in Canberra, Clarion, to perform Evensong a monthly program in the National Portrait Gallery.In 2013 he founded Turner Trebles primary school choir and, in 2014, Vocal Fry for high school students in the ANU Music Development Program.  As a singer he has performed principal roles with all the major Australian opera companies, including Opera Australia and has performed as a soloist throughout Australia and overseas.

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