Q and A
Can you tell us a bit about you, and what you are up to these days?
I live in New Zealand and I'm 58 years old. I changed career paths in my early twenties, moving from music to business. This is why the memories of my time with AYO are so precious. Today I own an online business coaching women through menopause.
What was a highlight of your time in AYO programs?
AYO European Tour, 1984.
What skills, musical and otherwise, did you take away from your time at AYO?
AYO helped me appreciate how music transcends social and cultural boundaries to bring us closer.
What was your favourite piece or performance during your programs?
Performing at Royal Albert Hall in London during the 1984 tour. I remember members of the audience holding up Aussie flags and kangaroos – it was the first time I felt a deep sense of national pride.
Why do you think AYO is important to the Australian cultural landscape?
Because young people with gifts should have equal opportunity to participate and perform with their peers — despite their economic background or education. AYO makes this possible.
How would you describe AYO in three words?
Inspiring young talent!
Is there anything else you would like to tell us about you or your time at AYO?
I would like to thank AYO and the Australian Government for supporting young musicians over the years. While at the time I didn't appreciate the hard work that went on behind the scenes, today I do, and I'm am grateful for those precious memories.
What was one of the first pieces of music to inspire you?
Rhapsody In Brass written by my Great Uncle, Sir Dean Goffin.
What pieces would you share with people who want to discover more about orchestral music?
An easy way to learn more is exploring the compositions of current day composers, who are writing for the movies we watch.
Is there a piece of advice you received from a music teacher/mentor that has always stayed with you?
Play as if for one person, not the audience.
How or why did you choose your instrument?
I played several instruments, but I have my high school music headmaster to thank for suggesting my main instrument, the double bass.
What instrument would you play if you couldn’t play your primary instrument?
The French horn.
Which composer would you invite to a dinner party and why?
Wagner. I love how he uses leitmotifs associated with individual characters, places and plot elements to tell the story through music. I would like to learn about the controversies of his life firsthand.
Would you rather: that you sounded like a tuba when you sneezed, or sounded like a piccolo when you laughed?