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Lunchtime Classical Concert - The Spire String Quartet

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Event description


Part of the Live Music Concert Series presented by the South West Music Regional Conservatorium

Sunday 20 August 2023, 1pm

South West Music Regional Conservatorium - 241-245 Cressy St. Deniliquin

Book your tickets today. Lunch included in ticket price.

Price:           Early Bird $15 (available until Friday 4 August)

Full Price:        $20

Free for Live Music Subscribers with VIP seating

Free for under 18’s.

Phone: 03 5881 4736

South West Music Regional Conservatorium present The Spire String Quartet. Prize winning students from the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music - University of Music.

Introducing The Spire String Quartet…

Sara Barbagallo – Violin

Jessica Leigh – Violin

Emma Amery – Viola

Fergus Ascot – Cello

About the musicians…
Sara Barbagallo – Violin

Sara is an enthusiastic and passionate musician from Melbourne. Her journey began at age 3 when she commenced violin lessons with the Suzuki method. Her love for music was nurtured during high school where she was given numerous opportunities to perform in many capacities. These included soloist with orchestra, concertmaster of the Symphony and String orchestras, and school Music Captain. During this time, Sara completed AMEB music exams up to AMusA on both violin and viola. Sara is currently in her third year of the Bachelor of Music (BMus) at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music (University of Melbourne). With guidance from teachers Lisa Grosman, Dr Elizabeth Sellars and Dr Curt Thompson, she has been a recipient of several awards and is currently Concertmaster of the university’s Symphony Orchestra. During her time at university, she has worked with members of the Australian Chamber Orchestra and the Australian String Quartet. Sara is also a passionate chamber musician, travelling to Texas for the Mimir Chamber Music Festival in 2022, as an Emerging Artist. Here, she studied with the Grammy award-winning, Pacifica Quartet and other accomplished musicians of various American Symphony Orchestras. A more recent highlight for Sara included performing with David Kim (Concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra) and members of the Australian National Academy of Music. For the past 5 years Sara has enjoyed participating in Australian Youth Orchestra programs where she has performed in many concert halls around Australia. In the future, Sara hopes to continue developing her love of music as a solo, chamber and orchestral musician.

Jessica Leigh – Violin

Born and raised in Melbourne, Australia, Jessica is a passionate chamber musician and orchestra player. She graduated from the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music (University of Melbourne) with a Bachelor of Music Performance degree in 2021. She is currently finishing her Honors year on violin, studying with Dr. Elizabeth Sellars, and has been a recipient of the Corinna D'Hage Mayer String Scholarship since 2020, the 2022 Ellinor Gertrude Harris Bequest, and the 2022 Berthan Jorgensen Exhibition scholarship. Jessica has led the second violins of the University's Symphony Orchestra and String Ensemble. Recent highlights include: a two week chamber music festival in Fort Worth Texas working with Jun Iwasaki (Concertmaster of Kansas City Symphony), Stephen Rose (Principal Second of Cleveland Orchestra) and many more; performing with David Kim (Concertmaster, Philadelphia Orchestra), the Australian National Academy of Music; and the launch of the Australian World Orchestra's 2023 Season with musicians from the London Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria. She has also participated in the Australian Youth Orchestra National Music Camps since 2021. Jessica has worked with many artists including Susie Park (Australian World Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra), Miki Tsunoda (Royal Flemish Philharmonic), members from the Australian String Quartet, Australian Chamber Orchestra, and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. Past teachers include Kirstin Kenny, Markiyan Melnychenko, and Rachael Beesley.

Emma Amery – Viola

Emma grew up on a farm in regional North-East Victoria and began her studies on violin at the age of six. She moved to Melbourne for tertiary study at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music where she has just completed her Bachelor of Music Performance (Honours) in 2023. After beginning her university studies on violin, Emma undertook study on viola midway through her degree and has since been enjoying performing on both instruments in chamber groups and orchestras within and outside of university. In 2022 Emma served as principal viola and principal second violin in the university’s Symphony Orchestra, and principal viola in its String Ensemble. Emma has a particular passion for orchestral playing and has participated extensively in Australian Youth Orchestra programs on both violin and viola from 2017-2023 including Young Symphonists, National Music Camps, and Seasons. She has also performed in side-by-side concerts with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra (2018, 2019, 2023), with the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Orchestra on tour with Andrea Bocelli in 2022, and played in the Melbourne Opera Orchestra in their performances of Wagner’s Ring Cycle earlier this year. A recent highlight was performing with the Australian Youth Orchestra at the Sydney Opera House conducted by Nigel Westlake. Chamber music also holds a special place for Emma, having travelled with Spire Quartet as emerging artists to Texas for the MIMIR Chamber Music Festival in 2022, and participating in the 2023 Australian Festival of Chamber Music in Townsville with her Piano Quintet SPELL, winners of the Melbourne Conservatorium Chamber Music Competition in 2022. When not performing, Emma enjoys teaching instrumental lessons at her schools, dog-watching, subsequent petting of dogs, searching for Melbourne’s best mocha, photographing the sky, brunching with friends, window-shopping, real shopping, and sleeping. *Emma is currently playing a Peter Goodfellow 2023 viola, generously on loan from Jannie Brown.

Fergus Ascot – Cello

Although now based in Melbourne, Fergus is originally from Bega, a small country town on the South-East coast of New South Wales. He began his cello studies age 9 at Mumbulla School, a Steiner primary school that emphasised development of the arts and creativity. Each year since picking up the cello he has participated in the South Coast Music Camp, and in 2017 returning as a tutor to mentor the younger musicians. That same year he began studies with former Principal Cellist of the Australian Chamber Orchestra David Pereira in Canberra. This lasted for only one year, as in 2018 he was accepted into the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School in Melbourne, where he completed the remaining two years of his secondary studies under the tutelage of Rosanne Hunt. In 2019 he enjoyed the role of Principal Cellist of the VCASS Symphony Orchestra, performing Dvorak’s 8th Symphony at the Melbourne Recital Centre, where he would return the next year to perform Debussy’s cello sonata at the Top Class Music event, a concert showcasing the highest scoring Year 12 musicians in the state. Fergus is now in the third year of his Bachelor of Music Performance degree at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, under the teaching of Richard Narroway. He is passionate about chamber music, and also participates in the Conservatorium Symphony Orchestra where he is Principal Cellist. After graduating, Fergus plans to continue his studies with Masters and Doctorate degrees in the US, with the longterm aim securing an orchestral position and continuing to play chamber music

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