Camerata is a Company in Residence at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC).
Camerata was founded in 1987 by acclaimed string educator Elizabeth Morgan AM, as an idealistic ensemble of emerging Artists which she then formed into a professional chamber orchestra in 2005.
Performing without a conductor, the Artistic Associates and their guest artists proudly take full ownership of the music to form a thriving, refreshing and acclaimed voice within the Australian arts landscape.
The constantly evolving group undertakes a major concert season annually in both Brisbane and Toowoomba. In addition, the orchestra perform regularly in festivals, collaborations, regional tours, live-to-air national broadcasts, recording, and fundraising activities.
As a Queensland ensemble, Camerata provides career and performance opportunities for string players who wish to build a professional, international career from Brisbane, and as a point of attraction for those returning from overseas.
Camerata's primary aim is to empower artists, inspire audiences, and enrich communities through music. Camerata performs a variety of styles of music in traditional and non-traditional spaces throughout the state and delivers workshops, school talks and concerts to support the education of young string players.
Camerata has a reputation for innovation and interesting and adventurous programming. The ensemble is extremely flexible in its repertoire and in the way it combines works in programs, playing the core "classics" as well as new and recent music, and Australian music. Camerata regularly works with performers outside the 'classical' sector.
Camerata has established itself as a chamber orchestra of national significance with an outstanding track record of artistic achievement.
Elizabeth Morgan AM was formerly Lecturer in Violin and Viola at The University of Queensland for 18 years and, for 14 years, was Adjunct Senior Lecturer in String Studies and String Pedagogy at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Griffith University where she continues as a part-time staff member.
Born and educated in the UK violinist/violist Elizabeth studied at Trinity College of Music London with Jan Sedivka (Sevcik, Thibaud, Kocian, Rostal tradition) and was the British representative in Canada for the International Concours Jeunesses Musicales masterclasses with Henryk Szeryng. She is widely known for her contribution to the development of string teaching in Brisbane, Queensland and Australia. Formerly a member of the Queensland Symphony Orchestra, the Mayne Quartet, the Mayne String Trio and the University of Queensland Sinfonieta, she has given workshops and lectures, and has toured throughout Queensland, Australia and the USA. She has toured twice to important centres throughout New Zealand and has remained a regular lecturer.
Elizabeth has received citations from the American String Teachers' Association - "for outstanding leadership and service", from the Australian String Teachers' Association (AUSTA) Queensland, and from the Queensland Youth Symphony Council "for services to the orchestra in its early years". In 1989 she was awarded The University of Queensland's prestigious Excellence in Teaching Award, and in 2000, the AUSTA National Distinguished Service Award. In 2002 she was placed on the first Honour Roll of the International Viola Society, Australia and New Zealand Branch. In 2003 she was appointed as Federal Examiner (strings) for the Australian Music Examinations Board (AMEB). In Queensland she is an AMEB Senior Examiner, member of the Queensland State Advisory Committee and Chairman of the String Specialist Panel. She reviewed the complete Viola Syllabus for AMEB and has contributed to the development of numerous string syllabuses and Work Books for AMEB.
Elizabeth has undertaken projects for the Australian Broadcasting Commission (ABC), Youth Music Australia, Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts, Australian Examinations Board (AMEB), the Australian National Academy (ANAM) and Education Queensland's Fanfare Programme. She was a member of the founding committee for Musically Outstanding Students (MOST) programs for which she was advisor, conductor and tutor for many years. In addition she has pioneered numerous innovative string programmes throughout Queensland and regularly adjudicates throughout the country. Her initiatives include the National Youth Concerto Competition, the Taabinga Spring Music Festival, and Camerata - Queensland's Chamber Orchestra.
In 2001 she was responsible for bringing International Workshops for the first time in the southern hemisphere to Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University, which resulted in the attendance of 500 national and international delegates. In May 2004 she was President of the Jury for the 11th International Violin Competition "Andrea Postacchini" in Fermo, Italy.
In 1975, Elizabeth became the founding president of the Australian String Teachers' Association (AUSTA), a position she held for four terms. Through this organisation she brought leading string performers and educators to Australia, directly influencing the development of string teaching in Australia. Elizabeth introduced the first string pedagogy course into Australia in 1978 while lecturing at The University of Queensland. She has also presented the comprehensive string pedagogy programme at the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University, arguably the most comprehensive string pedagogy course available. She was a founding member of the International Council of String Teacher Associations (CISTA) and formerly Chairman of Dalcroze Council of Australia.
In the Queen's Birthday Honours 2013, Elizabeth was made a Member of the Order of Australia, for "significant service to music education, particularly the violin."
Camerata is fortunate to enjoy the patronage of:
Brendan Joyce’s leadership of Camerata was recently described by The Australian as dynamic and in Limelight as indefatigable.
He frequently appears as soloist with the group, has led for milestones including its first recordings, tours, broadcasts, collaborations, and in acclaimed performances at the Tyalgum Festival, Darwin Festival, Queensland Music Festival and the Australian Festival of Chamber Music. Brendan is an alumnus of the original version of Camerata that played to critical acclaim 1987-1997.
In demand as a leader and concertmaster, Brendan performs regularly as leader of the Orchestra of the Antipodes in Sydney, and for many years appeared as a guest Concertmaster and member of the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra. With the latter he performed the premiere on period instruments of Max Richter’s Vivaldi Four Seasons Recomposed. During his youth orchestra days he led the Queensland Youth Symphony and Australian Youth Orchestras. Brendan has played with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, America’s Smithsonian Chamber Orchestra, and has played the complete cycle of Bartok’s iconic String Quartets as a member of the Kurilpa String Quartet.
Brendan attained a Doctor of Musical Arts in Violin Performance from The University of Maryland, USA, receiving awards there for his leadership of the Maryland Handel Festival Opera Orchestra, as well as for presentations and premieres of the music of twenty Australian composers. His early teachers included Joyce Crooks, Lyn Darveniza and Stephen Frewen-Lord in Ayr, Queensland, where he was born and raised. He undertook extensive studies and mentoring with Elizabeth Morgan AM in Brisbane. Brendan also studied in the United States with Gerald Fischbach, and in chamber music with David Salness and the Guarneri String Quartet.
Praised by the Sydney Morning Herald for their 'warmth of sound, sublime inner-voicing and spontaneity,' The Orava String Quartet is emerging as one of Australia's most exciting chamber music ensembles.
Protégés of the world renowned Takács string quartet, the Orava Quartet has performed extensively throughout the USA, Canada, China, Philippines, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, and Hong Kong, and have performed for Queen Sofia of Spain and Pope Benedict XVI.
Orava won the Musica Viva Australia Tony Berg Award for the most outstanding Australian ensemble as well as the Peter Druce Audience Prize at the 2013 Asia Pacific Chamber Music Competition in Melbourne.
Orava Quartet have been in residence with Camerata since 2014 and its members are: Daniel Kowalik (violin), David Dalseno (violin), Thomas Chawner (viola), Karol Kowalik (cello).
Beautifully calculated and coordinated... time and motion seemed to defy the laws of Physics
-The Washington Post
Musicians wishing to be considered for an audition or invitation to play with Camerata can express interest to do so at any time.
Camerata also welcomes immediate graduates and final year high-level university students to apply to the Upbeat Program for emerging artists.
Upbeat auditions will be held annually.
Your expression of interest is to include an attachment (no more than one A4 page) containing:
- A dot-point CV
- Name and contact details of two music referees
- A link to a video recording demonstrating up to 5 mins of your playing standard (existing recordings may be submitted)
Once complete, your expression of interest is to be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org