WILMA SMITH Following a long and celebrated career as Concertmaster of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Wilma now focuses on chamber music and guest-performing opportunities with the Australian and New Zealand orchestras. She plays regularly with the Australian World Orchestra, working with distinguished conductors such as Sir Simon Rattle and Zubin Mehta.
Born in Fiji and raised in New Zealand, Wilma studied at the New England Conservatory in Boston with Dorothy DeLay (violin) and Louis Krasner (chamber music). She was founding First Violinist of the Lydian Quartet, winners of the Naumburg Award for Chamber Music and multiple prizes at Evian, Banff and Portsmouth International String Quartet Competitions. She worked regularly with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and led the Handel and Haydn Society Orchestra and the Harvard Chamber Orchestra.
In addition to being curator and violinist/violist of Wilma & Friends, now in its eleventh season, Wilma has returned to her string quartet roots as Second Violinist of the Flinders Quartet. She teaches chamber music and violin at the University of Melbourne Conservatorium of Music and at Scotch College. She is also Musica Viva’s Artistic Director of Competitions, overseeing Strike A Chord and the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition.
KEITH CRELLIN OAM From 2001-2016, Keith Crellin OAM held the positions of Head of the String Department and Conductor-in-Residence at the University of Adelaide’s Elder Conservatorium of Music. Since May 2016 he has concentrated on his role as Artistic Director of the Adelaide Youth Orchestra which he took up in 2003, as well as further pursuing performing, conducting and composing.
The first violist to win the ABC Young Performers Award in 1972, Keith quickly established himself as one of Australia’s leading soloists and chamber music players. He was appointed Lecturer in Viola and Chamber Music at the Tasmanian Conservatorium of Music, Director and Principal Conductor of the Conservatorium Orchestra and Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of the Tasmanian Youth Orchestra.
In 1985, Keith became a founding member of the Australian String Quartet, based in Adelaide. He held the position for sixteen years, performing with the ASQ in many countries and making numerous recordings. As well, Keith has been conductor of the Australian Youth Orchestra’s Young Symphonists and tutor in the Australian Youth Orchestra’s Young Australian Concert Artists program on many occasions. He has attended numerous National Music Camps as tutor and conductor and now divides his time between teaching, performing and conducting. Keith was awarded the Order of Australia medal for his contribution to music and education in 2008.
MARK GAYDON Mark has been Principal Bassoonist with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra since 2003. He has appeared as soloist performing works by Mozart, Weber, Zwilich, Strauss and others. He has also appeared as guest principal bassoon with the Sydney, Queensland, Tasmanian and New Zealand symphony orchestras.
As a chamber musician he has performed with Elision Ensemble, The Southern Cross Soloists, the New London Chamber Ensemble, the Tancibudek Wind Quintet and his own group Ensemble Le Monde.
An avid teacher, Mark has been Associate Instructor at the Indiana University School of Music, a guest artist at the Australian National Academy of Music, bassoon tutor for the Australian Youth Orchestra, AYO National Music Camp and Young Symphonists programs, and Bassoon Instructor at the Elder Conservatorium since 2005.
Mark has a PhD in music from the University of Adelaide and was awarded a Dean of Graduate Studies Special Commendation for Thesis Excellence. In 2005 he won the ABC Young Performer of the Year wind, brass and percussion section. Mark is a keen supporter of Australian composers and has commissioned and premiered works for the bassoon by Gerard Brophy, Andrew Schultz, Katy Abbott, James Cuddeford, Luke Altmann and Charles Bodman Rae. Mark’s teachers include Kim Walker and Stephane Levesque.