Ordinary Music for Extraordinary People
Music by Aaron Copland, Appalachian Spring

Primary School kids dancing with colourful clothes on their hands at classroom
Photo by Claudio Raschella

Leading lights of the international stage join AYO’s Momentum Ensemble in this inclusive musical journey for children, music teachers, and mentors. Culminating in a joyous concert interpreting Aaron Copland’s iconic Appalachian Spring.

Friday 16 February, 11.30am
The Glasshouse
Port Macquarie / Garigal, Guruk
Free entry. Booking essential

Violinist and Director with the London Symphony Orchestra, Belinda McFarlane, together with Oliver Shermacher (Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, Australian World Orchestra), will lead intensive school residencies that will provide both professional developments in music education for Momentum Ensemble members while inspiring a love of music in young participants.

Students with diverse backgrounds and learning needs will embark on a two-week workshop, led by the talented Belinda McFarlane and Oliver Shermacher. The program will extend to four schools in Sydney and Port Macquarie, Oliver’s Hometown.

We welcome audiences to The Glasshouse, where these workshops culminate in a joyous concert interpreting Aaron Copland’s iconic Appalachian Spring. Children from all walks of life will perform and respond to music side by side with world-leading musicians, proving that music is truly the universal language.

This performance is more than a concert; it’s a testament to the power of music education,
fostering connections and building a harmonious community. Join us in this musical journey that not only imparts skills but also creates a symphony of unity, echoing the inclusive spirit of Momentum Ensemble and the Australian Youth Orchestra.

COPLAND Appalachian Spring Suite

Belinda McFarlane

Picture of Belinda McFarlane holding her violin while pointing the camera with her bow.
Photo by Tina Korhonen, 2020

Belinda graduated from the Elder Conservatorium, Adelaide University with First Class Honours. As Leader of the Australian Youth Orchestra she toured Europe, culminating in a BBC Proms concert – she liked it so much she stayed! Continuing her studies in London with Emanuel Hurwitz and Carmel Kaine, Belinda went on to become a member of the London Symphony Orchestra. As well as a member of the violin section she is a dedicated member of the LSO’s Discovery team, involved with creative music making, workshops, coaching, mentoring and teaching – most significantly as lead mentor and tutor for the Take A Bow programme, training string players of all abilities to perform onstage with the LSO in London and Paris, and the LSO’s On Track programme which involved training an orchestra of East London school children to perform alongside the LSO at the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympics. More recently she has been involved with the creation of the LSO’s East London Academy – a programme aimed at fostering a connection with and creating opportunities for young musicians from underrepresented backgrounds in music higher education and the profession. She also sits on the orchestra’s Discovery Advisory Committee.

As member of the fiorini piano trio, Belinda has performed throughout Europe, with further tours to Zimbabwe and Australia. Founder artists of the Aujols Festival, France, fiorini are very active in teaching and workshops – giving the first classical music workshop in Harare township Chitungwiza.
Belinda returns regularly to Australia to direct, mentor and tutor for the Australian Youth Orchestra programmes, as an animateur for the Canberra Symphony Orchestra, and as a player and Education Advisor for the Australian World Orchestra.

Oliver Shermacher

Picture of Oliver Shermacher with his clarinet

Australian born clarinettist Oliver Shermacher completed his Bachelors at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music under Francesco Celata, and his Masters at the Freiburg Hochschule für Musik with Kilian Herold and Anton Hollich. He is currently living between Germany and Australia, performing as soloist, chamber musician and orchestral clarinettist.

He was recently awarded the highly prestigious recognition of the 1st Prize and Audience Choice at the 2022 Aeolus Competition in Düsseldorf, one of the world’s most significant competitions for wind instrumentalists. Oliver won the Freedman Fellowship in 2018 and reached the Grand Finals of the 2018 ABC Young Performers Award, also receiving the Audience Choice award. Oliver has performed as soloist with the Düsseldorfer Symphoniker, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Apex Ensemble and was the Artist in Residence with the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra for their 2021/2022 Season, having premiered the Alice Chance Clarinet Concerto with the orchestra in 2022. Oliver has played as Principal Clarinet with the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Opera Australia Orchestra, Freiburg Philharmonisches Orchester and with the Australian World Orchestra on Bass Clarinet, as well as guest clarinettist with Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and Ensemble Offspring.

Oliver is a passionate composer, theatre maker and new music enthusiast with a focus on the intersection between theatre and solo performance.