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BlushNOW Projects


BLUSHNOW

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BlushNOW Projects


BLUSHNOW

Blushnow

BlushNOW is Blush Opera's contemporary music arm, supporting new compositions and productions which have an interest in contemporary themes and stories that reflect 21st century culture and life. BlushNOW serves to premiere new productions, support young composers in their quest to bring new opera to the stage.

PROJECTS

Chop Chef: The opera is currently in creative development stage as part of The Southlands Breakthrough Award 2017 supported by The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre Penrith. The figment of composer Paul Smith and Julie Koh's imagination, they have been dubbed Smith & Koh as this is there inaugural work together. It is also supported by the New Music Network and Inner West Council

Chop Chef: The opera is currently in creative development stage as part of The Southlands Breakthrough Award 2017 supported by The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre Penrith. The figment of composer Paul Smith and Julie Koh's imagination, they have been dubbed Smith & Koh as this is there inaugural work together. It is also supported by the New Music Network and Inner West Council

Fancy Me Dead is an original opera composed and written by Paul Smith. It has gone through a through process of R&D and workshopping having its premiere at the Festival of Voices 2015 in Hobart. It is continuing to evolve with its next presentation set to include a 7 piece chamber orchestra.

Fancy Me Dead is an original opera composed and written by Paul Smith. It has gone through a through process of R&D and workshopping having its premiere at the Festival of Voices 2015 in Hobart. It is continuing to evolve with its next presentation set to include a 7 piece chamber orchestra.

The Spider Maiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom  is a creation of Paul Smith's, written for the Kris Foundation Singapore. It had it's premiere in October 2016 at the Esplanade Theatre in Singapore.

The Spider Maiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom  is a creation of Paul Smith's, written for the Kris Foundation Singapore. It had it's premiere in October 2016 at the Esplanade Theatre in Singapore.

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Fancy Me Dead


Fancy Me Dead


 
 

A Blush Opera production supported by New Music Network Mini Series and Festival of Voices 2015 Tasmanian Cabaret Festival

An original cabaret opera by Paul Smith, the absurdist plot follows the curious lunch of two women who are interrupted by an unexpected visitor. The mystery that follows reveals much about the ladies’ complex relationship and may have fatal consequences for one of them.

‘Fancy Me Dead’ is  macabre comedy of operatic proportions for two voices, two hands and two dead legs. Meet Dora and Cora, two doyennes of design and business partners in a couture, upholstery empire. Lately business has not been so successful due to the mistakes of their Spanish intern Manuel. The two ladies meet to discuss their failing business over lunch when an unexpected visitor drops in. Witness two thrilling voices as they hurl accusations and threats at each other in a operatic murder mystery laced with intrigue, poison, fabric swatches, sandwiches..... and a very dubious pot of tea.

Duration 60 min (no interval)

Age M15+

Genre cabaret opera

Instrumentation 2 voices + piano

Alternative Instrumentation: 2 voices + chamber ensemble (clarinet/bassoon/flute/french horn/violin/viola/cello)

Highlights

I had to stop myself from laughing out loud because I didn’t want to miss the next line.
— audience feedback from Festival of Voices 2015

Meet the Creatives

Paul Smith Co-Artistic Director // Composer Paul is a lecturer in music at the University of New England where he teaches composition and music theory. He holds a Doctorate of Creative Arts from Western Sydney University where his research focused on music's connection with visual art forms.  His works for theatre include the chamber opera "Fancy Me Dead", first performed as part if the New Music Network Mini Series in 2015, and "The Spider Maiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom", commissioned by Chamber.Sounds and premiered in Singapore in 2016. He also composed and performed a piano score for a collaborative theatre work, "Frankenstein", at The Q in Penrith in October, 2016. He is currently composing a new work in development - Chop Chef: The Opera - with librettist Julie Koh for the The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre Southlands Breakthrough Award 2017. Paul's instrumental compositions include numerous pieces for keyboard. He has collaborated regularly with Italian pianist, Antonietta Lofreddo who has performed his work in Australia and Italy. She has released his pieces, "Kawaii Suite", "Iceberg Variations", and "Holding Masks" on three albums with Wirripang. "'Holding Masks" was performed at the Associazione Carducci in Como in May 2017. Other commissions include "The Death of Baldr" for sextet by the Sirius Chamber Ensemble.  His published research explores music and Japanese visual culture and can be found in the volumes "Manga-Vision" (2016, Monash University Press) and "Music's Immanent Future" (2016, Ashgate Publishing). 

Paul Smith

Co-Artistic Director // Composer

Paul is a lecturer in music at the University of New England where he teaches composition and music theory. He holds a Doctorate of Creative Arts from Western Sydney University where his research focused on music's connection with visual art forms. 

His works for theatre include the chamber opera "Fancy Me Dead", first performed as part if the New Music Network Mini Series in 2015, and "The Spider Maiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom", commissioned by Chamber.Sounds and premiered in Singapore in 2016. He also composed and performed a piano score for a collaborative theatre work, "Frankenstein", at The Q in Penrith in October, 2016. He is currently composing a new work in development - Chop Chef: The Opera - with librettist Julie Koh for the The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre Southlands Breakthrough Award 2017.

Paul's instrumental compositions include numerous pieces for keyboard. He has collaborated regularly with Italian pianist, Antonietta Lofreddo who has performed his work in Australia and Italy. She has released his pieces, "Kawaii Suite", "Iceberg Variations", and "Holding Masks" on three albums with Wirripang. "'Holding Masks" was performed at the Associazione Carducci in Como in May 2017. Other commissions include "The Death of Baldr" for sextet by the Sirius Chamber Ensemble. 

His published research explores music and Japanese visual culture and can be found in the volumes "Manga-Vision" (2016, Monash University Press) and "Music's Immanent Future" (2016, Ashgate Publishing). 

Jermaine Chau Co-Artistic Director // Mezzo soprano Jermaine is a founding member of Blush Opera and a current Co-Artistic Director. As part of Blush Opera’s commitment to presenting original works by new composers, she has performed Paul Smith composition ‘Fancy Me Dead’ at The Hayes Theatre as part of the New Music Network Mini Series.  in 2017 Jermaine is loving having the role of Kitty written for her in Blush Opera's latest creation Chop Chef: The Opera by Smith & Koh. Jermaine recently trained at the IFAC New Zealand Singing School 2017 where she worked with international coaches. A graduate of the Lisa Gasteen National Opera Summer School in Brisbane (2014), she studied opera at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music (2013-2014) where she took on the role as a sassy aunt Fidalma in Cimarosa’s comic opera Il Segreto Matrimonio. She took the lead role in Menotti’s Old Maid and the Thief and has performed as Cecilia in Mark Adamo’s Little Women. 2016 was thrilling year as Jermaine made her debut at the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra Gala; performed as Lady Bertram in Operantics’ production of Jonathan Dove’s Mansfield Park and will again join Operantics and the Penrith Symphony Orchestra in their production of La Sonnambula as Teresa. She revelled in the gluttonous role of Suor Dolcina in Opera Projects Sydney’s Suor Angelica; La Frugola in Puccini's Il Tabarro with Constantine Costi & Luke Spicer and in November, Jermaine was part of the cast of Opera Australia’s The Eighth Wonder in the role of Madame Magda performing on the forecourt of the Sydney Opera House.  In 2017 she performed in Carmen as part of Opera Australia's production on Sydney Harbour.

Jermaine Chau

Co-Artistic Director // Mezzo soprano

Jermaine is a founding member of Blush Opera and a current Co-Artistic Director. As part of Blush Opera’s commitment to presenting original works by new composers, she has performed Paul Smith composition ‘Fancy Me Dead’ at The Hayes Theatre as part of the New Music Network Mini Series.  in 2017 Jermaine is loving having the role of Kitty written for her in Blush Opera's latest creation Chop Chef: The Opera by Smith & Koh.

Jermaine recently trained at the IFAC New Zealand Singing School 2017 where she worked with international coaches. A graduate of the Lisa Gasteen National Opera Summer School in Brisbane (2014), she studied opera at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music (2013-2014) where she took on the role as a sassy aunt Fidalma in Cimarosa’s comic opera Il Segreto Matrimonio. She took the lead role in Menotti’s Old Maid and the Thief and has performed as Cecilia in Mark Adamo’s Little Women.

2016 was thrilling year as Jermaine made her debut at the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra Gala; performed as Lady Bertram in Operantics’ production of Jonathan Dove’s Mansfield Park and will again join Operantics and the Penrith Symphony Orchestra in their production of La Sonnambula as Teresa. She revelled in the gluttonous role of Suor Dolcina in Opera Projects Sydney’s Suor Angelica; La Frugola in Puccini's Il Tabarro with Constantine Costi & Luke Spicer and in November, Jermaine was part of the cast of Opera Australia’s The Eighth Wonder in the role of Madame Magda performing on the forecourt of the Sydney Opera House.  In 2017 she performed in Carmen as part of Opera Australia's production on Sydney Harbour.

Taryn Srhoj  Soprano Taryn studied at The University of Auckland School of Music, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Music majoring in Voice in 2008. Her other musicianship skills include attaining AmusA in piano and being accepted into the piano programme at the Aspen Music Festival and Summer school, USA. Currently based in Sydney, Taryn has recently performed as a soloist in the Willoughby Symphony Grand Opera Gala and was a recipient of the Q Lab Artists in Residence Programme at the Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre. In 2015 Taryn performed the role of Musetta in La Boheme with the Western Sydney Opera Company, Michaela in Carmen with Symphony Central Coast, Marie Antoinette for Blush Opera’s production Ladies Who Brunch in the Adelaide Fringe Festival and the role of Cora in the world premiere and subsequent tour of Fancy Me Dead by Australian composer Dr Paul Smith. Taryn has often performed with Sirius Chamber Ensemble, most notably the Alan Holley song cycle Borneo Songs and Berg’s Sieben Fruhe Lieder . Taryn was a Young Artist with Pacific Opera in both 2011 and 2012 during which she performed the role of Bettina in The Deluded Bridegroom and also Second Spirit in Mozart’s The Magic Flute. As a Pacific Opera Young Artist she also performed as a soloist in the Pacific Opera Gala, Opera By The Lake, Opera Unlaced and covered all three roles in the premiere of new Australian work Golden Summers by James Long. Taryn has had the privilege of premiering many new works. A highlight was performing and recording a new Soprano song cycle by Dr Paul Smith and singing in Art/Opera collaboration Project Rise; Singing The Virtual (Dr Andrew Burrell/Dr Paul Smith).

Taryn Srhoj 

Soprano

Taryn studied at The University of Auckland School of Music, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Music majoring in Voice in 2008. Her other musicianship skills include attaining AmusA in piano and being accepted into the piano programme at the Aspen Music Festival and Summer school, USA. Currently based in Sydney, Taryn has recently performed as a soloist in the Willoughby Symphony Grand Opera Gala and was a recipient of the Q Lab Artists in Residence Programme at the Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre. In 2015 Taryn performed the role of Musetta in La Boheme with the Western Sydney Opera Company, Michaela in Carmen with Symphony Central Coast, Marie Antoinette for Blush Opera’s production Ladies Who Brunch in the Adelaide Fringe Festival and the role of Cora in the world premiere and subsequent tour of Fancy Me Dead by Australian composer Dr Paul Smith. Taryn has often performed with Sirius Chamber Ensemble, most notably the Alan Holley song cycle Borneo Songs and Berg’s Sieben Fruhe Lieder .

Taryn was a Young Artist with Pacific Opera in both 2011 and 2012 during which she performed the role of Bettina in The Deluded Bridegroom and also Second Spirit in Mozart’s The Magic Flute. As a Pacific Opera Young Artist she also performed as a soloist in the Pacific Opera Gala, Opera By The Lake, Opera Unlaced and covered all three roles in the premiere of new Australian work Golden Summers by James Long.

Taryn has had the privilege of premiering many new works. A highlight was performing and recording a new Soprano song cycle by Dr Paul Smith and singing in Art/Opera collaboration Project Rise; Singing The Virtual (Dr Andrew Burrell/Dr Paul Smith).

Benjamin Burton   Pianist Benjamin Burton is a talented young pianist with a passion for accompanying vocal and instrumental performances. In 2014, Ben did an internship with Opera Australia, and travelled on full scholarship to Munich, Germany as repetiteur for the Bel Canto Summer Program. In his role as accompanist, Ben has performed all over the country, and in 2016 will be continuing to perform with Voci Stupende, be an official accompanist for the Sydney and Shoalhaven Eisteddfods, and for the third time be pianist-in-residence for the 2016 Moorambilla Voices Festival. 2016 also sees Ben giving recitals with Susannah Lawergren, Hannah Fraser and Andrew O’Connor of The Song Company, and performing as first pianist in Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle. Ben studied Piano Performance with an accompaniment focus at the Sydney Conservatorium with David Miller and Bernadette Harvey, and has also studied with David Howie and Stephen Mould. In 2012 and 2013 he won won the Mollie Neale award for highest marks in accompaniment he has also participated in masterclasses with Yvonne Kenny, Glenn Winslade, Fiona Janes, Bernadette Cullen, Carlo Barricello, Sue Newsome, Dr. Michael Halliwell, Maree Ryan and Ole Bohn.

Benjamin Burton  

Pianist

Benjamin Burton is a talented young pianist with a passion for accompanying vocal and instrumental performances. In 2014, Ben did an internship with Opera Australia, and travelled on full scholarship to Munich, Germany as repetiteur for the Bel Canto Summer Program. In his role as accompanist, Ben has performed all over the country, and in 2016 will be continuing to perform with Voci Stupende, be an official accompanist for the Sydney and Shoalhaven Eisteddfods, and for the third time be pianist-in-residence for the 2016 Moorambilla Voices Festival. 2016 also sees Ben giving recitals with Susannah Lawergren, Hannah Fraser and Andrew O’Connor of The Song Company, and performing as first pianist in Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle.

Ben studied Piano Performance with an accompaniment focus at the Sydney Conservatorium with David Miller and Bernadette Harvey, and has also studied with David Howie and Stephen Mould. In 2012 and 2013 he won won the Mollie Neale award for highest marks in accompaniment he has also participated in masterclasses with Yvonne Kenny, Glenn Winslade, Fiona Janes, Bernadette Cullen, Carlo Barricello, Sue Newsome, Dr. Michael Halliwell, Maree Ryan and Ole Bohn.

  Sirius Ensemble Sirius Chamber Ensemble was formed in 2011 by Ian Sykes (clarinet) and Alison Evans (bassoon) with Julia Zeltzer (french horn), Georgina Price (viola), and Clare Kahn (cello), later adding Claire Howard Race (piano), Melissa Coleman (flute) and Martyn Hentschel (violin) to the ensemble. The name ‘Sirius’ pays homage to the flagship of the First Fleet, the H.M.S Sirius that sailed from Portsmouth, England to Port Jackson during 1787-1788. Our passion is to perform music from the classic to contemporary periods, in a friendly and accessible atmosphere. We are committed to collaborating regularly with local composers and presenting new music alongside the classics. We relish the opportunity to perform the larger works for winds, strings and piano, as well as music for smaller groups of instrumentalists. Our repertoire is diverse and often features unusual combinations of instruments. Sirius Chamber Ensemble performs a regular concert series featuring the core ensemble augmented by guest artists. Since 2014 we have also featured programs of music showcasing the music of local composers. Recent and upcoming collaborators include composers Alan Holley, Spike Mason, Christine Draeger, Paul Smith, Nigel Ubrihien; and performers Taryn Srhoj (soprano), Jermaine Chau (mezzo soprano), Andrew Smith (saxophone), Georgia Lowe (harp), Matthew Collins (trumpet) and Alex Fontaine (oboe). https://siriuschamberensemble.com/about/

 

Sirius Ensemble

Sirius Chamber Ensemble was formed in 2011 by Ian Sykes (clarinet) and Alison Evans (bassoon) with Julia Zeltzer (french horn), Georgina Price (viola), and Clare Kahn (cello), later adding Claire Howard Race (piano), Melissa Coleman (flute) and Martyn Hentschel (violin) to the ensemble.

The name ‘Sirius’ pays homage to the flagship of the First Fleet, the H.M.S Sirius that sailed from Portsmouth, England to Port Jackson during 1787-1788.

Our passion is to perform music from the classic to contemporary periods, in a friendly and accessible atmosphere. We are committed to collaborating regularly with local composers and presenting new music alongside the classics. We relish the opportunity to perform the larger works for winds, strings and piano, as well as music for smaller groups of instrumentalists. Our repertoire is diverse and often features unusual combinations of instruments.

Sirius Chamber Ensemble performs a regular concert series featuring the core ensemble augmented by guest artists. Since 2014 we have also featured programs of music showcasing the music of local composers. Recent and upcoming collaborators include composers Alan Holley, Spike Mason, Christine Draeger, Paul Smith, Nigel Ubrihien; and performers Taryn Srhoj (soprano), Jermaine Chau (mezzo soprano), Andrew Smith (saxophone), Georgia Lowe (harp), Matthew Collins (trumpet) and Alex Fontaine (oboe).

https://siriuschamberensemble.com/about/

Mariko Elliot Graphic Designer Mariko is a graphic designer based in Sydney, with an absolute love for hand-lettering, typography, illustrations, and food. At three years old, she was asked "What do you want to be when you grow up?", and replied "I want to be an artist and a violinist." Spending most of her childhood years dedicating time to violin practice, she went on to study music at the Sydney Conservatorium, and then establish a career as a violin teacher. After coming back from an inspirational holiday trip to New York, she decided to follow her true passion and pursue the desire to be part of the world's visual creativity.  Mariko graduated from Tractor Design School and Shillington College. She completed an internship at M&C Saatchi at Re Agency and was on the artistic team that rebranded Optus in 2015.

Mariko Elliot Graphic Designer

Mariko is a graphic designer based in Sydney, with an absolute love for hand-lettering, typography, illustrations, and food.

At three years old, she was asked "What do you want to be when you grow up?", and replied "I want to be an artist and a violinist." Spending most of her childhood years dedicating time to violin practice, she went on to study music at the Sydney Conservatorium, and then establish a career as a violin teacher.

After coming back from an inspirational holiday trip to New York, she decided to follow her true passion and pursue the desire to be part of the world's visual creativity. 

Mariko graduated from Tractor Design School and Shillington College. She completed an internship at M&C Saatchi at Re Agency and was on the artistic team that rebranded Optus in 2015.

Performances

2015 October // Hayes Theatre Co // New Music Network Mini Series

2015 September // Baroque Room, Katoomba // New Music Network Mini Series

2015 July // Festival of Voices, Hobart // Tasmanian Cabaret Festival

2016 October // Festival Fatale (shortlisted) // Eternity Playhouse

2016 May // In Concert for Pacific Opera Fundraiser // Independent Theatre 

 

Acknowledgments

The creative development of Fancy Me Dead in 2015 would not have been possible without the financial and in-kind support of these three companies that were instrumental in bringing this piece to life. 

 
 

credits

Composer & Librettist Paul Smith

Cora Taryn Srhoj

Dora Jermaine Chau

Pianist Benjamin Burton & Naomi Degabriele

 

Conductor Luke Spicer

Chamber Ensemble Sirius Ensemble

Graphic Design Mariko Elliot

 

media

http://www.cutcommonmag.com/opera-comedy-and-murder-with-composer-paul-smith/

http://www.bluemountainsgazette.com.au/story/3392260/festival-of-voices-hit-fancy-me-dead-comes-to-blue-mountains/

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Chop Chef


CHOP CHEF THE OPERA

Chop Chef


CHOP CHEF THE OPERA

CHop chef

A Blush Opera production Supported by Southlands Breakthrough Award a Penrith Performing & Visual Arts program; Inner West Council and New Music Network Australia

Chop Chef: The Opera is a dark comedy where six contestants enter the cooking battlefield of Chop Chef. Faced with unusual and extreme cooking challenges they must compete to remain in the game and demonstrate who they are to the judges to avoid facing the chop. Behind the scenes, the producers and judges manipulate the contestants in an effort to create the most cutthroat form of entertainment. In thrilling arias and melodramatic ensembles pieces, contestants are pushed to their limits and some will stop at nothing to be the last chef standing. However, some contestants start to question their place in the competition and push back against the forces that bind them to their contracts. Perhaps the tables will turn...

Chop Chef is a chamber opera in two acts that explores the characters, tropes, and narrative devices of reality television and exports them to the operatic stage where they can be pushed to their absurd conclusions. These shows are a matter of life and death for the contestants. By exploring this topic, Blush is committed to expanding contemporary operatic repertoire with stories that have a direct resonance with broad Australian audiences.

 

Duration 120 min (and 20min interval)

Age M15+

Genre satirical opera

Instrumentation 6 voices + chamber ensemble

Highlights

Video by Lin Jie Kong

Meet the Creatives

Paul Smith Composer Paul is a lecturer in music at the University of New England where he teaches composition and music theory. He holds a Doctorate of Creative Arts from Western Sydney University where his research focused on music's connection with visual art forms.  His works for theatre include the chamber opera "Fancy Me Dead", first performed as part if the New Music Network Mini Series in 2015, and "The Spider Maiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom", commissioned by Chamber.Sounds and premiered in Singapore in 2016. He also composed and performed a piano score for a collaborative theatre work, "Frankenstein", at The Q in Penrith in October, 2016. He is currently composing a new work in development - Chop Chef: The Opera - with librettist Julie Koh for the The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre Southlands Breakthrough Award 2017. Paul's instrumental compositions include numerous pieces for keyboard. He has collaborated regularly with Italian pianist, Antonietta Lofreddo who has performed his work in Australia and Italy. She has released his pieces, "Kawaii Suite", "Iceberg Variations", and "Holding Masks" on three albums with Wirripang. "'Holding Masks" was performed at the Associazione Carducci in Como in May 2017. Other commissions include "The Death of Baldr" for sextet by the Sirius Chamber Ensemble.  His published research explores music and Japanese visual culture and can be found in the volumes "Manga-Vision" (2016, Monash University Press) and "Music's Immanent Future" (2016, Ashgate Publishing). 

Paul Smith Composer

Paul is a lecturer in music at the University of New England where he teaches composition and music theory. He holds a Doctorate of Creative Arts from Western Sydney University where his research focused on music's connection with visual art forms. 

His works for theatre include the chamber opera "Fancy Me Dead", first performed as part if the New Music Network Mini Series in 2015, and "The Spider Maiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom", commissioned by Chamber.Sounds and premiered in Singapore in 2016. He also composed and performed a piano score for a collaborative theatre work, "Frankenstein", at The Q in Penrith in October, 2016. He is currently composing a new work in development - Chop Chef: The Opera - with librettist Julie Koh for the The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre Southlands Breakthrough Award 2017.

Paul's instrumental compositions include numerous pieces for keyboard. He has collaborated regularly with Italian pianist, Antonietta Lofreddo who has performed his work in Australia and Italy. She has released his pieces, "Kawaii Suite", "Iceberg Variations", and "Holding Masks" on three albums with Wirripang. "'Holding Masks" was performed at the Associazione Carducci in Como in May 2017. Other commissions include "The Death of Baldr" for sextet by the Sirius Chamber Ensemble. 

His published research explores music and Japanese visual culture and can be found in the volumes "Manga-Vision" (2016, Monash University Press) and "Music's Immanent Future" (2016, Ashgate Publishing). 

Julie Koh Librettist Julie Koh (許瑩玲 / J.Y.L. Koh) was born in Sydney to Chinese-Malaysian parents. She studied politics and law at the University of Sydney, then quit a career in corporate law to pursue writing. Her short stories have appeared in The Best Australian Stories 2014, 2015 and 2016, 2016’s Best Australian Comedy Writing, TheAustralian, The Sleepers Almanac 7 to X, The Lifted Brow, Seizure, The Canary Press, Kyoto Journal, The Fish Anthology and Fixi Novo’s HEAT. In 2013, she was a finalist in the Qantas Spirit of Youth Awards Written Word category, longlisted for the Australian Book Review’s Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize, commended for the Australian Society of Authors’ Ray Koppe Young Writers’ Residency, and shortlisted for the Overland Victoria University Short Story Prize for New and Emerging Writers.  A full-length collection, Portable Curiosities, is now out with UQP. It has been shortlisted for the Readings Prize for New Australian Fiction 2016, the Queensland Literary Awards – Australian Short Story Collection – Steele Rudd Award 2016, and the UTS Glenda Adams Award in the 2017 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards. Portable Curiosities was one of The Guardian’s Best Australian Books of 2016, an Australian Book Review 2016 Book of the Year, a Sydney Morning Herald Daily Life feminist reading pick of 2016, and a Feminist Writers Festival Best Feminist Book of 2016. Julie is the editor of BooksActually’s Gold Standard 2016 (Math Paper Press), a new annual anthology of the best short fiction from cult writers of East Asia, Southeast Asia and the diaspora. She is also a founding member of Kanganoulipo. Chop Chef: The opera will be Julie's first foray into the operatic world.

Julie Koh Librettist

Julie Koh (許瑩玲 / J.Y.L. Koh) was born in Sydney to Chinese-Malaysian parents. She studied politics and law at the University of Sydney, then quit a career in corporate law to pursue writing. Her short stories have appeared in The Best Australian Stories 20142015 and 2016, 2016’s Best Australian Comedy WritingTheAustralian, The Sleepers Almanac 7 to X, The Lifted BrowSeizureThe Canary Press, Kyoto JournalThe Fish Anthology and Fixi Novo’s HEAT.

In 2013, she was a finalist in the Qantas Spirit of Youth Awards Written Word category, longlisted for the Australian Book Review’s Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize, commended for the Australian Society of Authors’ Ray Koppe Young Writers’ Residency, and shortlisted for the Overland Victoria University Short Story Prize for New and Emerging Writers. 

A full-length collection, Portable Curiosities, is now out with UQP. It has been shortlisted for the Readings Prize for New Australian Fiction 2016, the Queensland Literary Awards – Australian Short Story Collection – Steele Rudd Award 2016, and the UTS Glenda Adams Award in the 2017 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards. Portable Curiosities was one of The Guardian’s Best Australian Books of 2016, an Australian Book Review 2016 Book of the Year, a Sydney Morning Herald Daily Life feminist reading pick of 2016, and a Feminist Writers Festival Best Feminist Book of 2016.

Julie is the editor of BooksActually’s Gold Standard 2016 (Math Paper Press), a new annual anthology of the best short fiction from cult writers of East Asia, Southeast Asia and the diaspora. She is also a founding member of Kanganoulipo.

Chop Chef: The opera will be Julie's first foray into the operatic world.

Luke Spicer Conductor An acclaimed Violist and Chamber Musician, Luke Spicer is now poised to make his mark as a conductor both here and abroad. Graduating with a Mas-ters of Conducting from the Sydney Conservatorium, he has furthered his studies in Freiburg, and Manchester; and attended the Fondazione Musicale Chigiana, working under Maestro Guanluigi Gelmetti. In 2014 he was appointed Principal Conductor of the Sydney University Symphony Orchestra, and also works regularly with Opera Australia and the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra. Luke made his operatic debut in 2015 with Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice, as part of the Spectrum Now Festival, with Silvia Colloca singing the principal role. Other recent Conducting engagementsinclude Walton’s Façade, Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, Mendelssohn’s Elijah and Wagner’s Wesendonck Lieder. 

Luke Spicer Conductor

An acclaimed Violist and Chamber Musician, Luke Spicer is now poised to make his mark as a conductor both here and abroad. Graduating with a Mas-ters of Conducting from the Sydney Conservatorium, he has furthered his studies in Freiburg, and Manchester; and attended the Fondazione Musicale Chigiana, working under Maestro Guanluigi Gelmetti.

In 2014 he was appointed Principal Conductor of the Sydney University Symphony Orchestra, and also works regularly with Opera Australia and the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra. Luke made his operatic debut in 2015 with Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice, as part of the Spectrum Now Festival, with Silvia Colloca singing the principal role. Other recent Conducting engagementsinclude Walton’s Façade, Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, Mendelssohn’s Elijah and Wagner’s Wesendonck Lieder. 

Nick Atkins Dramaturg Nick is a theatre maker and producer. He is currently Producer, Q Programs for The Joan and Board Member for PACT Centre for Emerging Artists. Nick has worked as Associate Producer and Co-Artistic Director of Crack Theatre Festival, and as a teaching artist for The Joan, Shopfront Contemporary Arts, Casula Powerhouse and ATYP. He directed Teacup in a Storm and Frankenstein. Nick’s play Out of the Bars won Gasworks Arts Park’s ‘Playtime’ initiative in 2016. He wrote and performed A Boy & A Bean, which was awarded Best Performing Arts Event at Mardi Gras in 2014. Other productions include Twinkle (The Q, Seymour Centre), Dance Hall Days, directed by Katrina Douglas (The Q), and Unsex Me, which was part of Riverside’s ‘True West Theatre’ program.

Nick Atkins Dramaturg

Nick is a theatre maker and producer. He is currently Producer, Q Programs for The Joan and Board Member for PACT Centre for Emerging Artists. Nick has worked as Associate Producer and Co-Artistic Director of Crack Theatre Festival, and as a teaching artist for The Joan, Shopfront Contemporary Arts, Casula Powerhouse and ATYP. He directed Teacup in a Storm and Frankenstein. Nick’s play Out of the Bars won Gasworks Arts Park’s ‘Playtime’ initiative in 2016. He wrote and performed A Boy & A Bean, which was awarded Best Performing Arts Event at Mardi Gras in 2014. Other productions include Twinkle (The Q, Seymour Centre), Dance Hall Days, directed by Katrina Douglas (The Q), and Unsex Me, which was part of Riverside’s ‘True West Theatre’ program.

Cast

Jermaine Chau Mezzo Soprano: Kitty Jermaine is a founding member of Blush Opera and a current Co-Artistic Director. As part of Blush Opera’s commitment to presenting original works by new composers, she has performed Paul Smith composition ‘Fancy Me Dead’ at The Hayes Theatre as part of the New Music Network Mini Series.  in 2017 Jermaine is loving having the role of Kitty written for her in Blush Opera's latest creation Chop Chef: The Opera by Smith & Koh. Jermaine recently trained at the IFAC New Zealand Singing School 2017 where she worked with international coaches. A graduate of the Lisa Gasteen National Opera Summer School in Brisbane (2014), she studied opera at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music (2013-2014) where she took on the role as a sassy aunt Fidalma in Cimarosa’s comic opera Il Segreto Matrimonio. She took the lead role in Menotti’s Old Maid and the Thief and has performed as Cecilia in Mark Adamo’s Little Women. 2016 was thrilling year as Jermaine made her debut at the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra Gala; performed as Lady Bertram in Operantics’ production of Jonathan Dove’s Mansfield Park and will again join Operantics and the Penrith Symphony Orchestra in their production of La Sonnambula as Teresa. She revelled in the gluttonous role of Suor Dolcina in Opera Projects Sydney’s Suor Angelica; La Frugola in Puccini's Il Tabarro with Constantine Costi & Luke Spicer and in November, Jermaine was part of the cast of Opera Australia’s The Eighth Wonder in the role of Madame Magda performing on the forecourt of the Sydney Opera House.  In 2017 she performed in Carmen as part of Opera Australia's production on Sydney Harbour.

Jermaine Chau Mezzo Soprano: Kitty

Jermaine is a founding member of Blush Opera and a current Co-Artistic Director. As part of Blush Opera’s commitment to presenting original works by new composers, she has performed Paul Smith composition ‘Fancy Me Dead’ at The Hayes Theatre as part of the New Music Network Mini Series.  in 2017 Jermaine is loving having the role of Kitty written for her in Blush Opera's latest creation Chop Chef: The Opera by Smith & Koh.

Jermaine recently trained at the IFAC New Zealand Singing School 2017 where she worked with international coaches. A graduate of the Lisa Gasteen National Opera Summer School in Brisbane (2014), she studied opera at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music (2013-2014) where she took on the role as a sassy aunt Fidalma in Cimarosa’s comic opera Il Segreto Matrimonio. She took the lead role in Menotti’s Old Maid and the Thief and has performed as Cecilia in Mark Adamo’s Little Women.

2016 was thrilling year as Jermaine made her debut at the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra Gala; performed as Lady Bertram in Operantics’ production of Jonathan Dove’s Mansfield Park and will again join Operantics and the Penrith Symphony Orchestra in their production of La Sonnambula as Teresa. She revelled in the gluttonous role of Suor Dolcina in Opera Projects Sydney’s Suor Angelica; La Frugola in Puccini's Il Tabarro with Constantine Costi & Luke Spicer and in November, Jermaine was part of the cast of Opera Australia’s The Eighth Wonder in the role of Madame Magda performing on the forecourt of the Sydney Opera House.  In 2017 she performed in Carmen as part of Opera Australia's production on Sydney Harbour.

Zoe Drummond Soprano: Victoria Soprano Zoe Drummond is based in Sydney, Australia. She completed a Bachelor of Music Performance with First Class Honours at The Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Zoe has been a Melba Opera Trust Scholar for three years, as a proud recipient of the 2015 RJ Hamer Opera Scholarship, the 2016 and the 2017 Dame Nellie Melba Scholarship and Patrick & Vivian Gordon Award. As nominated by the Trust, Zoe was awarded The Sydney Opera House Opera Award- granting her the opportunity to work with internationally acclaimed soprano, Renee Fleming. Zoe was thrilled to make her Opera Australia debut last year in The Eighth Wonder as principal roles- Clare Goldring, Architects Daughter and Socialite. Now, Zoe is covering the lead role of Giroflé/Girofla in a fun new production with Opera Australia: Two Weddings, One Bride. In 2016, Zoe was selected as a finalist in nearly all of Australia's most prestigious singing competitions. Zoe won the Opera Foundation for Young Australians Lady Fairfax New York Scholarship. Additionally, Zoe won second prize in the 2016 Mietta Song Competition, the 2016 Megan Evans OAM Encouragement Award from the Joan Sutherland/Richard Bonynge Foundation and the AOAC Judith Ward Lieder Prize at the semi-finals of the IFAC Australian Singing Competition. Operatic highlights include the Nightingale in Respighi’s Sleeping Beauty (Victorian Opera), Giannetta in Donizetti’s L’elisir D’amore (Western Sydney Opera); Monica in Menotti’s The Medium (Opera Prometheus); Papagena in Mozart’s The Magic Flute (Pacific Opera); ‘Flora’ (cover) in Britten’s The Turn Of The Screw (Victorian Opera); and ‘Lucy’ in Menotti’s The Telephone (Penrith Symphony Orchestra). 

Zoe Drummond Soprano: Victoria

Soprano Zoe Drummond is based in Sydney, Australia. She completed a Bachelor of Music Performance with First Class Honours at The Sydney Conservatorium of Music.

Zoe has been a Melba Opera Trust Scholar for three years, as a proud recipient of the 2015 RJ Hamer Opera Scholarship, the 2016 and the 2017 Dame Nellie Melba Scholarship and Patrick & Vivian Gordon Award. As nominated by the Trust, Zoe was awarded The Sydney Opera House Opera Award- granting her the opportunity to work with internationally acclaimed soprano, Renee Fleming.

Zoe was thrilled to make her Opera Australia debut last year in The Eighth Wonder as principal roles- Clare Goldring, Architects Daughter and Socialite. Now, Zoe is covering the lead role of Giroflé/Girofla in a fun new production with Opera Australia: Two Weddings, One Bride.

In 2016, Zoe was selected as a finalist in nearly all of Australia's most prestigious singing competitions. Zoe won the Opera Foundation for Young Australians Lady Fairfax New York Scholarship.

Additionally, Zoe won second prize in the 2016 Mietta Song Competition, the 2016 Megan Evans OAM Encouragement Award from the Joan Sutherland/Richard Bonynge Foundation and the AOAC Judith Ward Lieder Prize at the semi-finals of the IFAC Australian Singing Competition.

Operatic highlights include the Nightingale in Respighi’s Sleeping Beauty (Victorian Opera), Giannetta in Donizetti’s L’elisir D’amore (Western Sydney Opera); Monica in Menotti’s The Medium (Opera Prometheus); Papagena in Mozart’s The Magic Flute (Pacific Opera); ‘Flora’ (cover) in Britten’s The Turn Of The Screw (Victorian Opera); and ‘Lucy’ in Menotti’s The Telephone (Penrith Symphony Orchestra). 

Alex Sefton Baritone: Tom Alex Sefton. Alex is a graduate of the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts with a bachelor of music and a diploma in classical voice. In Western Australia he performed in many music theatre, opera and oratorio productions. He has toured for two years for Opera Australia throughout NSW performing in hundreds of schools in productions of Mozart’s The Magic Flute and Rossini’s The Barber of Seville. He was awarded a best actor @CONDA for his performance in the title role of last year’s The Marriage of Figaro. He has performed main roles in Carmen, La Boheme, and La Traviata for Opera New England. He grew up in Newcastle and acted with many companies: 2 till 5 Theatre, Tantrum Theatre, Newcastle Theatre Company, Maitland and Hunter Youth Drama Ensemble.

Alex Sefton Baritone: Tom

Alex Sefton. Alex is a graduate of the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts with a bachelor of music and a diploma in classical voice. In Western Australia he performed in many music theatre, opera and oratorio productions. He has toured for two years for Opera Australia throughout NSW performing in hundreds of schools in productions of Mozart’s The Magic Flute and Rossini’s The Barber of Seville. He was awarded a best actor @CONDA for his performance in the title role of last year’s The Marriage of Figaro. He has performed main roles in Carmen, La Boheme, and La Traviata for Opera New England. He grew up in Newcastle and acted with many companies: 2 till 5 Theatre, Tantrum Theatre, Newcastle Theatre Company, Maitland and Hunter Youth Drama Ensemble.

Spencer Darby Tenor: Andy Spencer began singing at the age of 15 while studying as a brass play at the Sydney Conservatorium High School, and transitioned to full-time vocal study soon after. He recently completed a Masters of Music at the Sydney Conservatorium, where his research was focused on 20th century American opera. In addition to performing, Spencer teaches singing at a number of schools, and enjoys regular engagements as a reviewer and musicological writer for various arts organisations, including Musica Viva and The Australian Haydn Ensemble.  Spencer has performs regularly with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra and with the State Opera of South Australia as a chorus member. His musical interests vary widely from early music of the Baroque and Classical, through to traditional opera, new opera, musical theatre and modern music.

Spencer Darby Tenor: Andy

Spencer began singing at the age of 15 while studying as a brass play at the Sydney Conservatorium High School, and transitioned to full-time vocal study soon after. He recently completed a Masters of Music at the Sydney Conservatorium, where his research was focused on 20th century American opera. In addition to performing, Spencer teaches singing at a number of schools, and enjoys regular engagements as a reviewer and musicological writer for various arts organisations, including Musica Viva and The Australian Haydn Ensemble. 

Spencer has performs regularly with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra and with the State Opera of South Australia as a chorus member. His musical interests vary widely from early music of the Baroque and Classical, through to traditional opera, new opera, musical theatre and modern music.

Omega Ensemble Founded in 2005, Omega Ensemble initially performed in churches and fast became one of Australia’s finest and most lauded chamber groups. Its mission is to showcase outstanding artists who captivate and excite audiences through a revelatory program of chamber music. With a dedication to engaging the finest Australian musicians, as well as international guest artists, Omega presents outstanding musicians in an intimate and stimulating chamber setting. Omega Ensemble is unique in that the combination of musicians varies for each concert. Ranging from full chamber orchestra to duos it constantly provides a fresh and invigorating musical experience, captivating audiences. Omega’s players pride themselves on performing a diverse range of repertoire; whether it is an iconic gem, a neglected beauty or a brand new work, their passion and commitment to the highest level of craft is still deployed. For audiences, a performance by Omega touches mind, heart and spirit. As well as performing a diverse range of well-known and loved repertoire, Omega Ensemble’s programming includes works that have been lost to time. Omega’s ability to find these pieces and bring them to life spells out a deep love and passion not only for well-known chamber music, but also for exploring gems that delight, entertain and enrich their audiences. Omega’s innovative approach to concert repertoire and programming is further enhanced by Omega On Demand, in which audiences can relive the magic of a live performance. Beyond these videos, Omega Ensemble’s performances are now included as part of Qantas's inflight entertainment. Omega regularly performs in the iconic Utzon Room of the Sydney Opera House and in City Recital Hall, and tours to country towns including Orange and Bathurst, bringing the passion and joy of chamber music to audiences near and far.

Omega Ensemble

Founded in 2005, Omega Ensemble initially performed in churches and fast became one of Australia’s finest and most lauded chamber groups. Its mission is to showcase outstanding artists who captivate and excite audiences through a revelatory program of chamber music. With a dedication to engaging the finest Australian musicians, as well as international guest artists, Omega presents outstanding musicians in an intimate and stimulating chamber setting.

Omega Ensemble is unique in that the combination of musicians varies for each concert. Ranging from full chamber orchestra to duos it constantly provides a fresh and invigorating musical experience, captivating audiences. Omega’s players pride themselves on performing a diverse range of repertoire; whether it is an iconic gem, a neglected beauty or a brand new work, their passion and commitment to the highest level of craft is still deployed. For audiences, a performance by Omega touches mind, heart and spirit.

As well as performing a diverse range of well-known and loved repertoire, Omega Ensemble’s programming includes works that have been lost to time. Omega’s ability to find these pieces and bring them to life spells out a deep love and passion not only for well-known chamber music, but also for exploring gems that delight, entertain and enrich their audiences.

Omega’s innovative approach to concert repertoire and programming is further enhanced by Omega On Demand, in which audiences can relive the magic of a live performance. Beyond these videos, Omega Ensemble’s performances are now included as part of Qantas's inflight entertainment. Omega regularly performs in the iconic Utzon Room of the Sydney Opera House and in City Recital Hall, and tours to country towns including Orange and Bathurst, bringing the passion and joy of chamber music to audiences near and far.

Performances

2017 March // City Recital Hall, Angel Place (creative development) // NMN Lab 2017

2017 August // The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre (creative development) // The Southlands Breakthrough Award 2017

2017 TBC // Inner West 

acknowledgments

Blush Opera are the recipient of various grants that enable Chop Chef to become a reality, enables us to adequate compensation of artists to contribute to a vibrant cultural economy. 

NMN Lab2017 provided Blush Opera with funding to instigate a mentorship program between establish artists Omega Ensemble and Blush Opera as emerging artists. The program culminated in the first creative development workshop for Chop Chef: The Opera at City Recital Hall Angel Place.

NMN Lab2017 provided Blush Opera with funding to instigate a mentorship program between establish artists Omega Ensemble and Blush Opera as emerging artists. The program culminated in the first creative development workshop for Chop Chef: The Opera at City Recital Hall Angel Place.

    Blush Opera was the recipient of the 2017 Southland Breakthrough Award supported by Southland Shopping Centre that recognises the need for arts and culture in community life.

 

 

Blush Opera was the recipient of the 2017 Southland Breakthrough Award supported by Southland Shopping Centre that recognises the need for arts and culture in community life.

      The Penrith Performing & Visual Arts Ltd is providing in-kind support to bring this opera to life, by providing marketing, business and dramaturgical support to the opera at its embryonic stages. 

 

 

 

The Penrith Performing & Visual Arts Ltd is providing in-kind support to bring this opera to life, by providing marketing, business and dramaturgical support to the opera at its embryonic stages. 

Inner West Council Arts Grant is supporting the creative development of this opera by providing an opportunity for it to be workshopped in the Inner West to a live audience.

Inner West Council Arts Grant is supporting the creative development of this opera by providing an opportunity for it to be workshopped in the Inner West to a live audience.

Blush Opera also acknowledges the in-kind support offered to us by companies who have made Chop Chef: The Opera a living reality.

 
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Credits

Composer Paul Smith

Librettist Julie Koh

Conductor Luke Spicer

Graphic Designer Mariko Elliot

Kitty Jermaine Chau

Victoria Zoe Drummond

Tom Alex Sefton

Andy Spencer Darby

Chamber Orchestra Omega Ensemble

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Spidermaiden


Spider maiden

And the Runaway

Plum Blossom

Spidermaiden


Spider maiden

And the Runaway

Plum Blossom

About

A Paul Smith original opera commissioned by chamber•sounds presented by parramatta lanes festival and Kris Foundation Singapore

 

The Spider Maiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom is a musical fable about a Plum Blossom who leaves her tree looking for adventure. However she unexpectedly gets caught in the  Spider Maiden’s silken web. The Spider Maiden promises to set the Plum Blossom free if she can solve her tuneful riddle. Come listen and solve the riddle of the Spider Maiden’s song in this charming 25min chamber opera for the whole family.

Duration 20 minutes

Age 8 years +

Genre operatic fable

Instrumentation 2 voices + chamber ensemble // flute, clarinet, viola, cello

Highlights

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Meet the Creatives

Paul Smith Composer Paul is a lecturer in music at the University of New England where he teaches composition and music theory. He holds a Doctorate of Creative Arts from Western Sydney University where his research focused on music's connection with visual art forms.  His works for theatre include the chamber opera "Fancy Me Dead", first performed as part if the New Music Network Mini Series in 2015, and "The Spider Maiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom", commissioned by Chamber.Sounds and premiered in Singapore in 2016. He also composed and performed a piano score for a collaborative theatre work, "Frankenstein", at The Q in Penrith in October, 2016. He is currently composing a new work in development - Chop Chef: The Opera - with librettist Julie Koh for the The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre Southlands Breakthrough Award 2017. Paul's instrumental compositions include numerous pieces for keyboard. He has collaborated regularly with Italian pianist, Antonietta Lofreddo who has performed his work in Australia and Italy. She has released his pieces, "Kawaii Suite", "Iceberg Variations", and "Holding Masks" on three albums with Wirripang. "'Holding Masks" was performed at the Associazione Carducci in Como in May 2017. Other commissions include "The Death of Baldr" for sextet by the Sirius Chamber Ensemble.  His published research explores music and Japanese visual culture and can be found in the volumes "Manga-Vision" (2016, Monash University Press) and "Music's Immanent Future" (2016, Ashgate Publishing). 

Paul Smith Composer

Paul is a lecturer in music at the University of New England where he teaches composition and music theory. He holds a Doctorate of Creative Arts from Western Sydney University where his research focused on music's connection with visual art forms. 

His works for theatre include the chamber opera "Fancy Me Dead", first performed as part if the New Music Network Mini Series in 2015, and "The Spider Maiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom", commissioned by Chamber.Sounds and premiered in Singapore in 2016. He also composed and performed a piano score for a collaborative theatre work, "Frankenstein", at The Q in Penrith in October, 2016. He is currently composing a new work in development - Chop Chef: The Opera - with librettist Julie Koh for the The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre Southlands Breakthrough Award 2017.

Paul's instrumental compositions include numerous pieces for keyboard. He has collaborated regularly with Italian pianist, Antonietta Lofreddo who has performed his work in Australia and Italy. She has released his pieces, "Kawaii Suite", "Iceberg Variations", and "Holding Masks" on three albums with Wirripang. "'Holding Masks" was performed at the Associazione Carducci in Como in May 2017. Other commissions include "The Death of Baldr" for sextet by the Sirius Chamber Ensemble. 

His published research explores music and Japanese visual culture and can be found in the volumes "Manga-Vision" (2016, Monash University Press) and "Music's Immanent Future" (2016, Ashgate Publishing). 

Naomi Cooper Conductor Naomi is a freelance musician based in Sydney, Australia. Naomi graduated from a Bachelor of Music with distinction and went on to be awarded first Class Honours for her research project, Two Hands, Many Voices: Learning to be a choral director. She has recently completed her doctoral thesis, Sing to me: learning to direct community choirs. Naomi is currently working as a choral conductor, performer, sessional academic and guitar teacher. As a choral conductor, Naomi has extensive experience working with children's, school, university and community choirs and is in high demand across Sydney. She has conducted for many choirs including the Australian Youth Choir (Musical Director for NSW), Sydney Children's Choir, Sutherland Shire Choral Society, Kooskõlas, ChoraLocal Community Choirs, the New Day Carers Choir, the Joan Kids Chorus, Mountains Choral Society, and a number of school choirs (International Grammar School Sydney, Monte Sant' Angelo Mercy College, Mosman High School and Caroline Chisholm College). She regularly conducts in professional venues including the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Town Hall, Chatswood Concourse, St Mary's Cathedral and Sydney Conservatorium of Music as well as at private and public events. Naomi's expertise in the area of choral conducting has been recognised through publications in books, journal articles and conference proceedings. She has presented her research on community choirs both interstate (Hobart, Canberra, Perth, Brisbane and Sydney) and internationally (Singapore, Brazil, Japan, and Scotland). aomi has guest conducted opera and musical theatre performances for Blush Opera (The Spidermaiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom, 2017) and Normanhurst Uniting Church Musical Society (Scrooge, 2014). aomi has worked as a sessional academic for choir and music analysis at Western Sydney University and for vocal studies and popular music studies at Macquarie University. She has worked as a research assistant on several research projects within the Department Media, Music, Communication and Cultural Studies at Macquarie University. Naomi's own research has been published both nationally and internationally and she has recently been invited to collaborate on several research projects with colleagues in Australia and overseas.

Naomi Cooper Conductor

Naomi is a freelance musician based in Sydney, Australia. Naomi graduated from a Bachelor of Music with distinction and went on to be awarded first Class Honours for her research project, Two Hands, Many Voices: Learning to be a choral director. She has recently completed her doctoral thesis, Sing to me: learning to direct community choirs. Naomi is currently working as a choral conductor, performer, sessional academic and guitar teacher.

As a choral conductor, Naomi has extensive experience working with children's, school, university and community choirs and is in high demand across Sydney. She has conducted for many choirs including the Australian Youth Choir (Musical Director for NSW), Sydney Children's Choir, Sutherland Shire Choral SocietyKooskõlasChoraLocal Community Choirs, the New Day Carers Choir, the Joan Kids Chorus, Mountains Choral Society, and a number of school choirs (International Grammar School Sydney, Monte Sant' Angelo Mercy College, Mosman High School and Caroline Chisholm College). She regularly conducts in professional venues including the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Town Hall, Chatswood Concourse, St Mary's Cathedral and Sydney Conservatorium of Music as well as at private and public events. Naomi's expertise in the area of choral conducting has been recognised through publications in books, journal articles and conference proceedings. She has presented her research on community choirs both interstate (Hobart, Canberra, Perth, Brisbane and Sydney) and internationally (Singapore, Brazil, Japan, and Scotland).

aomi has guest conducted opera and musical theatre performances for Blush Opera (The Spidermaiden and the Runaway Plum Blossom, 2017) and Normanhurst Uniting Church Musical Society (Scrooge, 2014).

aomi has worked as a sessional academic for choir and music analysis at Western Sydney University and for vocal studies and popular music studies at Macquarie University. She has worked as a research assistant on several research projects within the Department Media, Music, Communication and Cultural Studies at Macquarie University. Naomi's own research has been published both nationally and internationally and she has recently been invited to collaborate on several research projects with colleagues in Australia and overseas.

Performances

Parramatta Lanes Festival 2017 // UNE Future Campus // University of New England

chamber•sounds // The Esplanade, Singapore // Kris Foundation

Credits

Composer Paul Smith

Conductor Naomi Cooper

 

Spider Maiden Rebecca Moret

Plum Blossom Jermaine Chau

Flute Melissa Coleman

Clarinet Evan Guy

Viola Charlotte Fetherson

Cello Kenichi Mizushima

Contributing Artists Ang Shao-wen, Wendy Woon, Vanessa Phang, Shirley Tong, Colin Tan,  Christoven Tan, Chan Si-Han