Moorambilla Voices in 2017 is about unearthing the stories of our region with “17 Message Sticks: 17 Communities”. We’re also immersing ourselves in Gundabooka, near Bourke, in July, to discover, uncover and bring to life the stories and landscape of that region in music, dance and visual art. This immersion is facilitated by Phillip Sullivan in partnership with NSW NPWS.
The journey begins with the Artistic and Cultural Immersion, develops through the Baradine Residency Camps and finishes with a flourish at the stunning Gala Concerts in Dubbo Regional Theatre on Saturday September 23.
Our Artists & Partners
Michelle Leonard OAM is the founder, Artistic Director and Conductor of Moorambilla Voices. This nationally awarded program seeks at its core to give country kids a rare opportunity to sing, dance and create incredible performances with artists of the highest calibre. The friendships, performances and opportunities the children make are life-changing. Under Michelle’s direction, the choirs and annual program has flourished, receiving numerous national and state awards.
Michelle’s work was featured in Wide Open Sky (directed by Lisa Nicol and winner of the Audience Award for Best Documentary at 2015 Sydney Film Festival) and Outback Choir (Heiress Films/ABC Australia), both documentaries about the Moorambilla Voices program released to wide acclaim.
Michelle is also the founding Artistic Director and Conductor of Leichhardt Espresso Chorus since 1998.
This adult chorus annually performs traditional “major works” with orchestra and also actively commissions new Australian work – currently 100 new Australian choral works have been created for this ensemble.
Michelle is widely sought after as a choral clinician on Australian repertoire and appears regularly as a guest speaker, adjudicator and workshop facilitator. Michelle was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for Services to the Community and Performing Arts in 2017.
Jacob Williams is a graduate from Queensland University of Technology (QUT). During his time studying he worked with Natalie Weir, Grant McLay, Shaaron Boughen, Zaimon Vilmanis, Timothy Farrar, Keith Hawley, Michael Edge and Rosetta Cook. Jacob also represented QUT at several festivals including the 2011 Guangdong Modern Dance festival in China and the 2009 Brisbane Festival. Graduating from his Bachelor degree in 2011, Jacob completed an Honours thesis providing insight into the development of Brisbane’s independent contemporary dance sector and a Post Graduate Diploma in Education. Jacob is currently Queensland Ballet’s Education Executive, developing and implementing a range of
programs which provide accessible and authentic arts experiences to teachers and students across Australia. Since 2014, Jacob has collaborated with Moorambilla Voices Company in creating multisdiciplinary performances alongside composers, musicians and visual artists and since 2016, Jacob has been involved with the Moorambilla Arts Pathway program, supporting the development of young and emerging artists including regional dance artist Tainga Savage.
Noni Carroll: is a Sydney and Riverina based photographer specialising in musical theatre, commercial and family portraiture, landscape artworks and documentary photography. A semi-finalist in the 2014 and 2015 Moran Photographic Prize, Noni was runner up in the 2015 Art Gallery of NSW Instagram Australian Landscape competition.
Noni’s involvement with Moorambilla started in 2012 as a promotional and documentary photographer. In 2016/2017 she mentored regional youth whilst photographing landscapes and people of the 17 communities involved with Moorambilla.
Noni has also been involved with Moorambilla’s Narran Lakes and Mt Grenfell artistic cultural immersions where visual works and musical compositions are created. Noni lives and breathes photography. She relishes the opportunity to be able to capture Australia’s beautiful, diverse landscapes and people – showcasing them to a broader audience.
The Song Company, Australia’s premier vocal ensemble, will join the MAXed OUT candidates.
Taikoz is one of Australia’s most versatile music percussion ensembles with a strong commitment to education. Taikoz has collaborated with John Bell and the Bell Shakespeare Company, Eitetsu Hayashi and Eitetsu Fuun no Kai, Meryl Tankard, Regis Lansac and Kodo, the Sydney, Melbourne, West Australian and Queensland Symphony Orchestras, as well as European ensembles.
Patrick Baker is our composer in residence for the Moorambilla Voices Regional Boys Choir. Patrick is a Sydney-based composer who has written music for ensembles such as Woden Valley Youth Choir, juice (UK) and Sydney Children’s Choir. Currently he is a Composer Fellow with Trinity Grammar School, Sydney.
His music has been workshopped by members of the Song Company, Ensemble Offspring, and soprano Jane Sheldon, and he has participated in the composer schools with Stephen Leek, Paul Stanhope and others. His music has been performed both nationally and internationally, as well as received radio broadcast. Patrick is also an active performer, singing with the Choir of St James’, King Street; and Luminescence Chamber Singers.
He completed a Bachelor of Music (Classical Voice) at the ANU School of Music in 2012 where he studied with Christina Wilson and Alan Hicks, and is currently completing a Master of Music Studies (Composition) at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music under Carl Vine.
Josephine Gibson is our composer in residence for the Moorambilla Voices Regional Girls Choir, her second year with us. Josephine is an emerging composer, having completed her honours in Composition at the Sydney Conservatorium in 2016, under the tutelage of Paul Stanhope. She has composed and acted as Music Director for eight productions at the University of Sydney, including the 2017 and 2016 Women’s Revue, and the Sydney University Dramatic Society’s 125th Anniversary production of Agamemnon. She has had works commissioned and performed by Gondwana Choirs, Sydney Chamber Choir and the Sydney Youth Orchestra.
She is currently finishing a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Philosophy at the University of Sydney.
Kevin Barker is our composer in residence for the Moorambilla MAXed OUT Company. Kevin is a Sydney-born composer who’s had a diverse career in music as both composer and performer. He writes in a wide range of idioms from contemporary classical through jazz and popular music, and has written for such artists as the Sydney Sinfonia, Cantillation, Occidental Strings, Three’s Company Opera, the SOQ, Australian Jazz Orchestra, Don Burrows and James Morrison.He has recently returned to post-graduate study at the Sydney Conservatorium, and his current projects are a suite of “jazz lieder”
for singer, saxophone, and string quartet, and an opera scheduled for performance in late 2018.
MUSICIANS IN RESIDENCE
Ben Burton is our accompanist for 2017. Ben has worked with many award-winning solo vocalists and Sydney-based choral ensembles. This is Ben’s fifth year in residence.
Clive Birch is Moorambilla speaker. Former singer with The Song Company, Clive is now an independent performer, recently in concert in a one-man show, Clive Live, at Studio MV.
VISUAL ARTISTS IN RESIDENCE
This year’s program will be captured by our incredible photographer in residence Noni Carroll, with Christopher McHughes from Burra Mac Photography Brewarrina, interns Tainga Savage, Ethan Day, and Chantae Eyre.
Jyllie Jackson is the CEO and Artistic Director of LightnUp and it’s feature event Lismore Lantern Parade. She is recognised as an innovator of international standing in her field. We are very excited to welcome her and her team back again to Moorambilla in 2017. Jyllie is working with lantern artist Sara Tinning once more this year.
Ryuji Hamada: was born and played wadaiko in Yokohama, Japan. He has also studied the yoko-uchi style of taiko on Hachijo Island, as well as Miyake-daiko with original masters, Tsumura-sensei and Sons. After travelling to Australia in 2012, Ryuji joined Taikoz as Associate Player (mainstage) and with the Taikoz partnership he is actively involved in the Moorambilla Voices artistic team for 2017.
Explore our various programs and learn about our Skills Development Workshop 2017.