On Monday, 18 October the Canberra Girls Grammar School Chamber Orchestra were treated to a 90 minute workshop with one of the leading Baroque cellists in Australia, Louise King. The girls were given music that they had never seen before and were then coached from whoa to go in the correct musical styles, techniques and historical context of the music.
Louise has a distinctive and energetic style to both her teaching and her performing and the girls responded with the same level of energy and engagement and produced a lovely result at the informal concert for parents and friends at the end of the workshop.
It was great to see the ability of the students to be able to deal with being thrown into a situation where they had to adapt to what was going on immediately and the girls did this superbly. A special congratulations goes to Lujia Yang (Year 9) who after only learning the cello for a year has not only moved into the Chamber Orchestra but was given the solo cello part to play with Louise in Vivaldi's Double Cello Concerto in the concert. She did an incredible job and is an inspiration and positive example to us all in terms of her perseverance and commitment.
We hope to be able to bring more of these incredible professional performers to come and inspire our music students and bring out the wonderful musical qualities within them. The Chamber Orchestra has performed at such a high level this year and has achieved an enormous amount. They have learned a huge amount of repertoire and have been able to accompany both a full flute concerto, perform the large choral work Vivaldi's Gloria at the 90th Anniversary as well as perform in several concerts all with different repertoire. An enormous feat for a high school ensemble.
Two of the main things I took from Louise's workshop was the overriding idea that, "there is no freedom without rules," as well as there is no music without "heart". Hopefully the girls will be able to take these lessons with them and apply them to every other aspect of their lives as they are such important lessons to learn.
Rowan Harvey Martin
Head of Strings
Photo above: Louise King playing the cello alongside the Canberra Girls Grammar School Chamber Orchestra