Outstanding young Australian musicians have excelled in the Queensland Intensive musical education program, performing as part of the Australian Romantic and Classical Orchestra’s Young Mannheim Symphonists held in April.

From the ages of 12 and 23, the young orchestra members were directed through a week intensive which welcomed local Brisbane and regional Queensland youths to learn the life of classical music.

Ethan Lee, aged 16, from Highgate Hill in Brisbane, commented on his life of learning and his gratitude for the experience.

“As a classically trained musician, I’ve explored a variety of classical, romantic and contemporary music styles, but have not fully immersed myself in either style,” Ethan responded.

“Given that our instruments (especially woodwind) have been modernised with the luxury of additional keys and standardised tuning systems, imitating the performance of the time was challenging, but rewarding.”

As a high school student, Ethan spends much of his time dedicated to music lessons and performances, and despite his schooling commitments, was thankful to have the opportunity to develop his skills as part of the orchestra.

“The Young Mannheim Symphonists program gave me an amazing opportunity to dive headfirst into the wondrous era of classical and early romantic music,” he said.

Ethan with fellow students, Laura and Florence

Co-Artist and Director of the orchestra, Nicole van Bruggen, commented that the intensive was a triumph and the participants performed well in pieces by classical composers Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven.

“The energy on stage was palpable and the orchestra played with vigour, passion and intensity, bringing the knowledge and insights they had gained from the historically informed workshops and rehearsals to life,” she said.

Ethan Lee observed that the opportunity for the students to come together is an experience he would recommend to anyone who could be involved.

James Pensini, Educator and Senior Conductor of the Sydney Youth Orchestras said:

“I cannot recommend the Young Mannheim Symphonists program more highly for those young musicians who are looking for the “what next?” in their musical journeys.”

For more information, visit https://www.arco.org.au/yms

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