2021 four winds festival artists

Please note: Artists, Composers and Ensembles are sorted by the initials of their first names.

For their special appearance at the 2021 Four WInds Festival,...




Position: Ensemble

For their special appearance at the 2021 Four WInds Festival, the Candelo Musicians are Candelo singer/songwriter/storytellers: Heath Cullen (guitar), Pete Wild (piano), Rae Kennedy (spoken word), Tamlyn Magee (harp), Robyn Martin (double bass), Kate Burke (guitar/violin), Melanie Horsnell (guitar/banjo) and Sam Martin (guitar/double bass) plus special guest Yuin artists Kyarna Rose & Matty Walker and Gabadoo.

Supported by the National Museum of Australia’s Cultural Connections Initiative,...

Djinama Yilaga Choir


Djinama Yilaga Choir

Position: Choir

Supported by the National Museum of Australia’s Cultural Connections Initiative, Four Winds’ first Aboriginal Creative Producer Cheryl Davison facilitated a community led project to revitalise and strengthen the cultural practices undertaken by Yuin people at the time of Cook’s Voyage, 250 years ago.

As part of this project the Djinama Yilaga Choir was born. Choir members have worked with composer and Indigenous Language Scholar Dr. Lou Bennett to write new works in Dhurga language and an arrangement for choir member Shakeela Williams’ song, Walawaani for performance at the 2020 Festival. When that festival was cancelled due to COVID-19, the performance project evolved to become the film project we share with you at the 2021 Festival, with the long awaited festival performances of these beautiful songs in language. The choir also perform at many events along the coast.

Yorta Yorta Dja Dja Wurrung, Dr Lou Bennett AM is...

Dr Lou Bennett AM

Performer | Songwriter | Actor

Dr Lou Bennett AM

Position: Performer | Songwriter | Actor

Yorta Yorta Dja Dja Wurrung, Dr Lou Bennett AM is a former member of the internationally acclaimed trio Tiddas, and during her ten years with the band, Lou wrote a number of the group’s signature songs.

Lou’s versatile work within the Arts industry over the past thirty years includes various roles as Performer, Songwriter, Musical and Artistic Director, Composer, Actor, Soundscape Designer and Academic.

Lou was a member of the Black Arm Band and was an instrumental force in the company’s transformative journey from being a one-off ‘special project’, into becoming an Indigenous performing Arts company. Lou completed her PhD in October 2015 and her dissertation discusses the importance and relevance of Indigenous language retrieval, reclamation and regeneration through the medium of the Arts to enhance community health and wellbeing.

In 2017, Lou was accepted as the McKenzie Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Melbourne and was inducted onto the Victorian Women’s Honour Roll in 2017. In 2019, Lou accepted the appointment as a member (AM) of the Order of Australia for her significant service to the performing arts, particularly to music, and the Indigenous community. In 2020 Lou was chosen as a Westpac Research Fellow continuing her research program Sovereign Language Rematriation Through Song Pedagogy in the Faculty of Arts at the University of Melbourne.

Emma Jezek is the Assistant Principal 2nd Violin in the...

Emma Jezek


Emma Jezek

Position: violin

Emma Jezek is the Assistant Principal 2nd Violin in the Sydney Symphony, a position she has held since 1997. She was born in Adelaide and studied with Beryl Kimber and Ron Woodcock at the Elder Conservatorium. She furthered her studies in the US at Indiana University Bloomington with Franco Gulli and SUNY Purchase with Isaac Malkin.  

Emma was previously in the Melbourne Symphony and has been Acting Principal in the Adelaide Symphony and Tasmanian Symphony. She has played with the Vienna Symphony, Vienna Chamber Orchestra and Klangforum Wien as well as the Australian World Orchestra.  

Emma has recently played in the SSO’s Utzon Room series as well as the Melbourne Digital Concert Hall series. Emma loves teaching and has tutored at AYO and National Music Camp.  

Gabadu is a Djirringanj man from the Yuin Nation, born...


Hip Hop Artist


Position: Hip Hop Artist

Gabadu is a Djirringanj man from the Yuin Nation, born and raised in Bermagui NSW. He has been creating hip hop, R & B and urban funk music for over ten years, and is known for producing soul– infused beats and clear, dynamic vocals.

For Gabadu, music is a way to express his feelings about his life, family and experiences. Making music has helped Gabadu overcome some anxiety in the past, providing a creative outlet and a way to escape the challenges of everyday life.

A father of five, Gabadu loves spending time with his young family. Gabadu started listening to hip hop artist Easy E from N.W.A when he was a kid, and that inspired him to try making his own music. He loves the old school hip hop vibe and is also a reggae rapper/singer, inspired by his idol, Bob Marley.

Gabadu has been performing up and down the NSW east coast since 2016, and hopes to carve out a successful career as a performer, earn respect for making great music and make his family proud.

“One only had to hear the opening bars to realise...

Goldner String Quartet

String Quartet

Goldner String Quartet

Position: String Quartet

“One only had to hear the opening bars to realise this is a very fine quartet indeed.” 

The Telegraph, UK – City of London Festival review 2011 

“The Goldners give the most sublimely articulate and raptly communicative reading of Elgar’s elusive String Quartet that it’s been my privilege to encounter.” 


Celebrating their 25th Season in 2020, the Goldner String Quartet has longstanding recognition, as not only Australia’s pre-eminent string quartet but as an ensemble of international significance, favourably compared with the best in the world. The Quartet is named after Richard Goldner, founder of Musica Viva Australia. 

 Launched in 1995 and still retaining all founding members, the musicians are well known to Australian and international audiences through their performances and recordings and for their concurrent membership of the Australia Ensemble @UNSW. All members have occupied principal positions in organisations such as the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and Australian Chamber Orchestra. Unanimous audience and critical acclaim following their Wigmore Hall debut in 1997 ensured the Goldner Quartet’s invitations to prestigious UK and European festivals. 

Performances in the USA and throughout Asia have followed, in addition to several tours of New Zealand. 

The Quartet regularly appears at many of Australia’s leading music festivals including Musica Viva’s Sydney Festival, Music in the Hunter, and at Huntington Estate among others, in addition to being Quartet in Residence at the annual Australian Festival of Chamber Music, in Townsville, North Queensland. The Goldners also enjoyed outstanding success at the 2017 Adam Chamber Music Festival, in Nelson, NZ. More recently the Goldners have toured the UK, including London’s Wigmore Hall, and performed in Italy for the opening of the 2019 Biennale Arte in Venice. 

 Special projects have included a major 20th-Century retrospective, and the complete Beethoven String Quartet Cycle. The Quartet’s appearances in the 2011 City of London Festival drew capacity audiences and unanimous praise from UK critics, and were broadcast on the BBC. Other Goldner projects have included The Quartets – a live DVD documentary with Peter Sculthorpe, and an international project in celebration of Sydney’s Sister Cities. In 2015 the Quartet undertook a nationwide tour for Musica Viva’s International Series and in 2017 presented the complete series of Coffee Concerts for Musica Viva Sydney audiences. 

The Goldner’s live recordings of the complete Beethoven String Quartet cycle released on ABC Classics, won the 2009 Limelight Award for Best Classical Recording. The Quartet has numerous recordings for the prestigious UK label, Hyperion; each disc highlights string quartets and piano quintets of a different composer (Bloch, Bridge, Dvořák, Elgar, Harty, Taneyev, Arensky, Vierne, Pierné, Bruch, Borodin, Korngold and Bartok to date) with pianist Piers Lane. Universal rave reviews have followed, including Diapason D’Or, Editor’s Choice in Gramophone magazine and BBC Music Magazine, as well as finalist for the BBC Music Magazine’s Chamber Music Award in 2009. Also released are the complete quartets of Szymanowski and Stravinsky on Naxos, and the complete quartets of Carl Vine on ABC Classics. The Goldners had a close working relationship with Peter Sculthorpe; 3 volumes of his Quartets are recorded on the Tall Poppies label and the Goldners own DVD documentary, The Quartets, recorded with Peter Sculthorpe is released by ABC Classics. 

Strongly committed to teaching the next generation of string quartets, the Goldners have mentored young ensembles through programs of the Australian Youth Orchestra, Musica Viva Australia and the Sydney Conservatorium. New works have been regularly commissioned for the Goldners from many of Australia’s leading composers. 

Goldner String Quartet : 

Dene Olding  (violin) 

Dimity Hall (violin) 

Irina Morozova (viola) 

Julian Smiles (cello) 

Graham Abbott has been Conductor-in-Residence at the Elder Conservatorium of...

Graham Abbott


Graham Abbott

Position: Conductor

Graham Abbott has been Conductor-in-Residence at the Elder Conservatorium of Music Adelaide, Musical Director of Adelaide Philharmonia Chorus, Associate Conductor of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Musical Director of Melbourne Chorale, and Guest Chorus Master for the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.

He has conducted all the major Australian orchestras, opera companies and leading choral societies. A respected music educator, Graham was producer and presenter of the highly successful Keys To Music series on ABC Classic FM from 2003 – 2017 and is currently making a series of podcasts for Universal Music.

This year Graham returns to Adelaide and Melbourne Symphony Orchestras, State Opera South Australia (Barber of Seville), Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and Hobart Festival of Voices.

Born 1983 in Iran, Hamed Sadeghi is a world music...

Hamed Sadeghi

Persian oud, tar

Hamed Sadeghi

Position: Persian oud, tar

Born 1983 in Iran, Hamed Sadeghi is a world music specialist and tar, setar and oud player. A composer and producer now based in Sydney, he studied Persian classical music in Tehran and published a book ‘Ganjineye Tar’, a collection of pieces from maestro Ali Akbar Khan Shahnazi.

Hamed completed a master of sound engineering in Malaysia before he moved to Australia in 2013. He has toured throughout Australia with maestro Shahram Nazeri and Shahroz Aziz, he also tours with his band Eishan Ensemble in Australia, Taiwan and the Philippines.

His recent highlights in theatre include scoring and performing in productions at Belvoir Sydney Theatre, Kuala Lumpur Performing Art Centre, Sydney Festival and Adelaide festival . His collaborative score with Michael Askill for The Iliad (Out Loud) was nominated for the Best Original Score at the Sydney Theatre Awards 2019.

“While improvisation is central to the band’s conception, it’s the quality of the Sadeghi’s​ compositions and the opulence of the ensemble sound as much as any soloing​ that makes the music so enthralling. Despite its bright, metallic sound, the tar has a singular ability to soothe one into a state of quiet rapture, so you emerge from its spell feeling that perhaps you can survive another day, after all”

John Shand – Sydney Morning Herald

Hamed moved to Australia to pursue his career in a western country which led him to collaborate with well–known Australian jazz and classical musicians. Sadeghi was nominated in two categories at the Art Music Awards 2020 – Work of the Year and Luminary Award.

Heath Cullen is a singer, songwriter, performer, record producer and...

Heath Cullen

Singer | Songwriter

Heath Cullen

Position: Singer | Songwriter

Heath Cullen is a singer, songwriter, performer, record producer and Independent recording artist, from the rural village of Candelo , New South Wales.
Over the past 10 years he has forged an international career: touring and recording in Australia and the US, while remaining based in the regional NSW town where he was raised.

He has released three self-produced albums, all through his own label, Five By Nine Recordings: A Storm Was Coming But I Didn’t Feel Nothing (2010); The Still And The Steep (2013, nominated for the Australian Music Prize); and Outsiders (2015), which was named “One of the finest, most inspired Australian rock albums in quite some time… the work of a man well on top of his game” by Rhythms magazine, and garnered rave reviews.

The album was recorded with Elvis Costello’s legendary band the Imposters – the only time in their 35 year career the band have collaborated with a singer other than Costello.

In January 2017 he was one of five Australian artists invited (alongside Bernard Fanning, Sarah Blasko, Chris Cheney and Paul Dempsey) to sing at the Sydney Opera House as part of the sold out international tour “Celebrating David Bowie”, featuring members of Bowie’s own band.
He is the recipient of the 2018/19 Create NSW Music Fellowship, and is currently working on his fourth full length album with three time Grammy winning producer Joe Henry.

Bega Valley born and bred, Jay McMahon revels in being...

Jay McMahon


Jay McMahon

Position: Drums

Bega Valley born and bred, Jay McMahon revels in being part of the backline and keeping it steady. In his thirty-year journey as a musician, Jay has been part of many musical offerings such as supporting 90s Aussie grunge bands, hitting the tubs for consummate performers like Adam Levy (US) and basking in the joys and talents of local musicians he grew up with and admires. Jay has toured around the country in many incarnations, from country hall gigs to festivals like the Cobargo Folk Festival to the National Folk Festival. Jay consistently offers his versatile and sympathetic approach to many musicians who are both besotted and grounded by his ability to meld into the groove. He is always humbled by every musical interaction he has had, both intimate and grand.

Kate is a multi-instrumentalist, singer, composer and music producer with...

Kate Burke

multi-instrumentalist | singer | composer

Kate Burke

Position: multi-instrumentalist | singer | composer

Kate is a multi-instrumentalist, singer, composer and music producer with two decades’ experience on the international folk music circuit.
Kate has long collaborated with Ruth Hazleton and with the band Trouble in the Kitchen, and has recently joined forces with Luke Plumb to record arrangements of traditional songs inspired by the 1970’s folk revival.
Kate has recorded with many artists including Judy Small and David Ross McDonald (The Waifs), has twice toured Ireland with renowned Irish folk singer Andy Irvine, and has appeared as a vocal soloist at the Sydney Opera House for a season of Bush Babies’ Proms.
Two of Kate’s albums have been named as Folk Album of the Year by the National Film and Sound Archive, and her two latest releases with Trouble in the Kitchen and Luke Plumb & the Circuit were been nominated for the Age Music Victoria Award for Best Folk/Roots Album

Kyarna Rose & Matty Walker are proud Yuin singer-songwriters from Wollongong. Best known...

Kyarna Rose & Matty Walker

Singer | Songwriter

Kyarna Rose & Matty Walker

Position: Singer | Songwriter

Kyarna Rose & Matty Walker are proud Yuin singer-songwriters from Wollongong. Best known for their beautiful harmonies and covers of classic songs, their repertoire infuses their honest chemistry into anything from country, to pop, to rock. Their first single, ‘Never Too Far Gone’ hit the Australian country charts and peaked at number 4 in its first week – a promising sign of the bright future before these talented artists.

Liisa Pallandi has been a permanent member of the Australian...

Liisa Pallandi


Liisa Pallandi

Position: violin

Liisa Pallandi has been a permanent member of the Australian Chamber Orchestra since 2014. She first performed at the Four Winds Festival in 2012 as an ACO Emerging Artist and can’t wait to be back again in 2021.  

 Liisa enjoys performing with a range of performers in diverse styles on both violin and viola. Recent highlights include touring with the Sydney Dance Company, joining the Jousia Ensemble for their 10th anniversary concert in Helsinki, recording with contemporary music group Ensemble Offspring, improvising with jazz musician/composer Paul Cutlan and performing with rapper Ziggy Ramo. 

Lior is one of Australia’s most successful singer-songwriters, renowned for...




Position: Soloist

Lior is one of Australia’s most successful singer-songwriters, renowned for his beautiful voice and songs that radiate truth and sincerity.
He burst on to the Australian music scene in 2005 with his stunning debut album – ‘Autumn Flow’ – the album becoming one of the most successful independent debuts in Australian music history. Lior has since released a further four albums to wide critical acclaim.

He is a multi ARIA award winner and nominee, an APRA Screen Award winner and Triple J ‘J Award’ nominee for Australian Album of the Year.

In 2013, together with Nigel Westlake, Lior co-wrote and performed ‘Compassion’ – a song cycle for voice and orchestra set to ancient Hebrew and Arabic texts centred around the idea of compassion.  ‘Compassion’ won the ARIA for ‘Best Classical Album’ in 2014, and was awarded the Austin Critics’ Award for ‘Best Symphonic Performance of 2015-16’ following its US premiere.

Marianne is Associate Principal Second Violin with the Sydney Symphony....

Marianne Edwards


Marianne Edwards

Position: violin

Marianne is Associate Principal Second Violin with the Sydney Symphony. She gained her doctorate from Sydney University where she studied with Wanda Wilkomirska.

Marianne won the Kendall National Violin Competition and Australian National Concerto and Vocal Competition, and was awarded Second Prize at Gisborne International Music Competition. She studied with Barbara Gilby and Alice Waten at ANU and with Igor Ozim at the Mozarteum in Salzburg.

Marianne was a String Finalist in ABC Young Performers Award and recipient of the MSO Young Artist Award affording solo performance opportunities with Queensland and Melbourne Symphony Orchestras. She is first violinist with the Enigma Quartet.

Based in Candelo in southern NSW, Melanie has recorded ten...

Melanie Horsnell

Singer | Songwriter

Melanie Horsnell

Position: Singer | Songwriter

Based in Candelo in southern NSW, Melanie has recorded ten albums and EPs including her latest, ‘Song to Sing on a Saturday Night’. Melanie’s critically acclaimed album The Cloud Appreciation Society was long-listed for the 2013 Australian Music Prize, Quatre Chemins for the 2015 Australian Music Prize, and she was nominated for an APRA award in 2011.
She has toured with Glen Hansard and The Frames, Jason Mraz, Bernard Fanning, Lou Rhodes, Slaid Cleaves and Sarah Blasko among others, as well as touring extensively on her own in Australia and Europe.
Melanie recorded an album in French, which was funded by the highly successful Pozible campaign and gave Melanie a six month residency in France, writing songs with poet Alain Rivet and pop icon Helena Noguerra. Melanie has also written songs with Wendy Matthews and Catherine Britt, and for film and television.

Nigel’s career, spanning over 4 decades, began as a clarinettist....

Nigel Westlake


Nigel Westlake

Position: composer/conductor

Nigel’s career, spanning over 4 decades, began as a clarinettist. He started composing from 1980 for radio, theatre, circus, TV, film and the concert hall.

His film credits include Ali’s Wedding, Paper Planes, Miss Potter, Babe, Children of the Revolution and numerous IMAX films amongst others.

His work has been awarded 2 Arias, 15 APRA awards, [screen & classical categories] the Paul Lowin Orchestral Prize (2x), & Gold Medal for “Best Original Music” at the New York International Radio Festival.

He holds an honorary Doctorate in Music from UNSW and made his US conducting debut with the New York Philharmonic in 2016.

Patrick has been acting professionally since 1976, starting his career as...

Patrick Dickson


Patrick Dickson

Position: Actor

Patrick has been acting professionally since 1976, starting his career as AASM at the Theatre Royal in Stratford, East London. After a year he joined the Roundabout Theatre in Education Company in Nottingham and then, after another year at Stratford he emigrated to Australia.
Over the years Patrick has worked with many companies in Australia, most notably Thalia, Bell, Griffin, Ensemble, Studio and most State companies. He is also co-artisitic director and founding member of O’Punksky’s Theatre and he lives in the Bega Valley.

Pete’s first piano was rescued from a bulldozer at a...

Pete Wild

performer | composer | Songwriter

Pete Wild

Position: performer | composer | Songwriter

Pete’s first piano was rescued from a bulldozer at a demolition site.
Highly regarded as a performer, composer, theatre director and songwriter, Pete’s debut album was album of the week on Radio National. His song Mars 1 won the 2018 APRA/AMCOS Cygnet Folk Festival song competition. He has composed for various theatre and film projects in the South East region, and his work has been recognised by the Canberra Area Theatre Awards.
He has worked closely with several highly regarded Australian musicians, performing and recording with Heath Cullen, Jackie Marshall, Sam Martin (Mikelangelo and the Black Sea Gentlemen), Eamon McNelis (Flap!), Mike Martin (The Strelley Project), Melanie Horsnell, and Kate Burke (Kate Burke & Ruth Hazleton, Trouble in the Kitchen).

Raechelle Kennedy is a story-collector, a poet, and a visual...

Raechelle Kennedy

Poet | Visual Artist

Raechelle Kennedy

Position: Poet | Visual Artist

Raechelle Kennedy is a story-collector, a poet, and a visual artist.

She is drawn to the tales that get shoved in pockets and rarely told; the poems that live in forgotten faces and quiet towns.

Hailing from Anishinaabeg land, some 9000 miles and a hemisphere away, Raechelle now finds herself weaving a new story of home here on Yuin Country, in the ever-surprising and story-thick village of Candelo.

“We can all communicate with our body. Whether it’s in...

Rafael Bonachela


Rafael Bonachela


“We can all communicate with our body. Whether it’s in a ballroom, the street, a disco, or whether it’s on stage, dance is a universal language which can bring everyone together.”

Rafael Bonachela was born in Barcelona where he began his early dance training before moving to London, and in 1992 joined the legendary Rambert Dance Company. 

He remained with Rambert as a dancer and Associate Choreographer until 2006 at which time he successfully set up the Bonachela Dance Company (BDC) to concentrate on the rapid rise of his choreographic career. As a choreographer, Rafael has been commissioned to make works for Candoco, George Piper Dances, ITDANSA Danza, Contemporanea de Cuba, Transitions Dance Company and Dance Works Rotterdam amongst others. 

In 2008, Rafael premiered his first full-length production 360° for Sydney Dance Company. Less than six months later, he was appointed Artistic Director making headlines around the dance world. His vision for the Company embraces a guiding principle that has seen the repertoire grow with the addition of commissioned dance works from Australian and visiting international guest choreographers. The premiere works are often programmed alongside Rafael’s own creations, ensuring diversity for audiences and providing much sought after opportunities for his remarkable ensemble of dancers to be exposed to the work of some of the most in-demand choreographers of our time. 

Rafael Bonachela’s internationally recognised talent has seen him work not only with contemporary dance at the highest level but also with artists from popular culture, such as Kylie Minogue, Tina Turner,  Sarah Blasko  and  Katie Noonan  as well as leading fashion designers  Dion Lee  and  Toni Maticevski. Such collaborative efforts reflect the inspiration he finds and utilises from culture today. 

Rebecca is Principal Percussionist with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra having...

Rebecca Lagos


Rebecca Lagos

Position: percussion

Rebecca is Principal Percussionist with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra having previously held the positions of Assistant Timpanist/Tutti Percussionist with SSO and Principal Timpanist with the TSO. 

 She has performed with the MSO, WASO, ACO, Seymour Group, Sydney Alpha Ensemble, The Australia Ensemble and Taikoz.  

 Rebecca was a member of Synergy Percussion from 1987-1999 and has often returned as a guest artist. With Synergy she premiered and recorded works by numerous Australian composers. The group recorded concertos for percussion ensemble by Takemitsu and Carl Vine with the SSO.  

 In 2006 Rebecca premiered Nigel Westlake’s percussion concerto, When the Clock Strikes Me, with the SSO and was awarded “Best Performance of an Australian Composition” at the APRA 2007 Classical Music Awards. 

Robyn Martin grew up in remote coastal desert town of...

Robyn Martin


Robyn Martin

Position: bass

Robyn Martin grew up in remote coastal desert town of Ceduna. Like all her siblings, Robyn was called Spin by her teachers at Ceduna Area School after her father’s nickname.

She started playing bass at age 13 in family band Spineffex.

Robyn completed a Bachelor of Contemporary Music at Southern Cross University, majoring in composition and bass guitar. During her time at university, Robyn travelled to Central Australia working with Music Outback alongside musician Greg Sheehan, delivering regular week long workshops in remote communities Ampilatawatj and Utopia, north east of Alice Springs.

In 2005, Robyn first visited Candelo and was helpless against the lure and romance of monthly bush dances and a thriving hub of like-minded country bumpkin hippy musicians.

She has been involved with many varied local bands in the Bega Valley including quirky original outfit The Wild Martins, Rob n Sam and The Drift, rockabilly band The Hoops, rock steady group Rudy Raquetteers and funk soul reggae band The Pocket which is fronted by Robyn on bass and vocals. Robyn recently formed The New Graces with fellow Candelo musicians Kate Burke and Melanie Horsnell.

Rohan Dasika is a double bassist with a diverse musical...

Rohan Dasika

double bass

Rohan Dasika

Position: double bass

Rohan Dasika is a double bassist with a diverse musical life in Australia and abroad. He has worked on contracts in the Frankfurter Opern-und-Museumsorchester and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, as well as being engaged at festivals including the Australian Festival of Chamber Music, Four Winds Festival, and the Canberra International Music Festival. Passionate about new music, Rohan has performed at the Bendigo International Festival of Exploratory Music and Lucerne Festival Academy, and was subsequently invited back to Lucerne as part of the Orchestra of the Lucerne Festival Alumni. In 2019 Rohan was announced as the winner of the Freedman Classical Fellowship.

Sam Martin grew up in the Central West of NSW,...

Sam Martin

multi-instrumentalist | singer

Sam Martin

Position: multi-instrumentalist | singer

Sam Martin grew up in the Central West of NSW, Australia. Raised in the dance halls and bars of Bathurst he developed a love for entertainment and community.
Sam studied piano, clarinet and accordion as a boy and moved on to string bass in his late teens before studying jazz the Australian National University.
Sam worked as a sideman in the country, bluegrass and folk music circuit. His experience in these styles greatly influenced his musicality and understanding of the music industry.

Since 2006, Sam has worked as a bass player, singer and actor in the renowned theatre and festival ensemble Mikelangelo and the Black Sea Gentlemen.
Since 2007 Sam has worked as production manager for Mikelangelo and The Black Sea Gentlemen, as a freelance sound engineer and is currently the producer of the Candelo Village Festival.
Sam currently resides in Candelo on the South Coast of NSW with a young family, a part time teaching job and a full time commitment to the community around him.

Melbourne pianist and composer Stefan Cassomenos is one of Australia’s...

Stefan Cassomenos


Stefan Cassomenos

Position: Piano

Melbourne pianist and composer Stefan Cassomenos is one of Australia’s most vibrant and versatile musicians. As recipient of the Second Prize in the International Telekom Beethoven Competition Bonn 2013, Cassomenos has performed throughout Europe and Asia, and has performed concertos with several Australian symphony orchestras, as well as orchestras overseas. Cassomenos is a founding member of chamber ensemble PLEXUS, which has commissioned and premiered over 100 new works. Cassomenos’ compositions are regularly performed throughout Australia. Cassomenos is joint Artistic Director of Port Fairy Spring Music Festival, with violinist Monica Curro. Cassomenos is generously supported by Kawai Australia.

“Cassomenos is one of those now rare artists whose composure does not display the need for attention. Hardly has any pianist of our time played so calmly, soberly, absorbedly, and as unpretentiously as does Cassomenos.”

Tonhalle Magazine, 2015

“Cassomenos’s unique exploration of the requiem mass was jubilant and arresting. The work is a ‘no holds barred’ affair: its brazen narrative veers between the demonic and the revelatory, juxtaposing the Latin mass ordinary with passages from the Book of Revelations. A genre-hopping musical score engages epic film music tropes, contemporary classical, jazz, pop and at times what sounds like a rave. Think ‘requiem rock opera’, to borrow the words of an excited audience member, post-concert. Cassomenos has thrown everything into this work, creating a rapturous, hour-long musical orgy that disintegrates any line between what’s sacred and profane (both musically and religiously speaking). The requiem brought the audience to its feet in appreciation not just of the composer’s incredible efforts, but also the fantastic performances of all involved. With this visionary and eclectic concert, Plexus have continued to make their bold musical mark on Australia’s performing arts scene.”

Andrew Aronowicz, Limelight Magazine, 2015

Dance changes you. More than simply witnessing something beautiful, or...

Sydney Dance Company


Sydney Dance Company

Position: Dance

Dance changes you. More than simply witnessing something beautiful, or engaging with culture, to experience dance is to be positively altered. From performances at the Joyce Theatre in New York, to the Grand in Shanghai, the Stanislavsky in Moscow and the Sydney Opera House at home, Sydney Dance Company has proved that there are no passive observers in a contemporary dance audience. 
The reward of truly moving audiences, and the raw pride of sharing Australian art with the world has driven our ensemble of 17 dancers, led by Artistic Director Rafael Bonachela, to become one of the world’s strongest forces in contemporary dance. Alongside Bonachela’s original works, our programs have featured guest choreographers like Jacopo Godani, Alexander Ekman, Gideon Obarzanek and Cheng Tsung-lung, as well as collaborations with Sydney Festival, Australian Chamber Orchestra, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, David Jones and composers Bryce Dessner, Nick Wales, 48nord and Ezio Bosso. 
Sydney Dance Company has a broad community beyond the practice and performance of our lead dancers. We believe in the universality of dance, and with the largest public dance class program in Australia, we help over 70,000 people a year connect with the grace, strength and creativity that lives within all of us. Our nation-wide education program offers a strategic curriculum targeting primary and secondary students through to career focused study for pre-professional dancers and university graduates. 


Sydney Dance Company began as a group founded in 1969 by dancer Suzanne Musitz. Soon known as The Dance Company (NSW), from 1975-1976 the Company was directed by Dutch choreographer Jaap Flier, before the appointment of Australian choreographer Graeme Murphy in 1976. In 1979 Murphy and his partner Janet Vernon instituted the defining name change to Sydney Dance Company and proceeded to lead it for a remarkable 30 years. Murphy and his collaborators created work that enthralled audiences in Australia and in extensive international touring, including being the first western contemporary dance company to perform in the People’s Republic of China. 
Sydney Dance Company has been led since 2009 by Spanish-born Artistic Director Rafael Bonachela. Over the past eight years the Company has cemented its reputation as a creative powerhouse, with an acclaimed group of dancers presenting new work by Bonachela and other choreographers, designers, composers and musicians. The Company has expanded its reach into the towns and cities it visits with work for schools and local dancers. 
Since 1986 the Company has been a resident of the purpose-built studios at The Wharf in Sydney’s Walsh Bay, minutes from the city’s famed Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House. 

Artist Director, Roger Benedict  At the Sydney Symphony Orchestra we...




Position: orchestra

Artist Director, Roger Benedict 

At the Sydney Symphony Orchestra we are committed to championing the future of live symphonic music through supporting the next generation of rising stars. The Fellowship has been giving young pre-professional musicians the chance to springboard a career in music for over 20 years. The Fellows work in collaboration with our Sydney Symphony musicians performing in mainstage concerts and receiving world class coaching and mentorship from our musicians and guest artists. They join us on the journey with our community and education programs as we strive to inspire and move broader audiences through our music. 


The Sydney Symphony Orchestra is grateful for the support of our Fellowship patrons, the Australia Council for the Arts and Create NSW. 

2021 Sydney Symphony Fellows 

Brian Hong, violin ; Tim Yu, violin ; Dana Lee, viola; Miles Mullin-Chivers, cello; Callum Hogan, oboe; Richard Shaw, clarinet; Jordy Meulenbroeks, bassoon; Emily Newham, horn; Fletcher Cox, trumpet and Dale Vail, trombone. 

Tamlyn Magee (aka Anactoria) is a relative newcomer to Candelo,...

Tamlyn Magee

Multi-Instrumentalist | Producer

Tamlyn Magee

Position: Multi-Instrumentalist | Producer

Tamlyn Magee (aka Anactoria) is a relative newcomer to Candelo, but since her arrival in 2017 she has engaged deeply with the vibrant arts community there, performing alongside locals of international acclaim, as well as taking on the role of President of Candelo Arts Society and working as a music educator in the area.

In 2020 she received a Creative Development Fellowship through CreateNSW, a huge opportunity which resulted in a body of work soon to be released as her debut album entitled Eupraxia. A multi-instrumentalist, bourgeoning producer and versatile songwriter, Tamlyn has a passion for collaboration and is a lifelong student of the creative process itself.

The Muffat Collective are a classical music quartet with a...

The Muffat Collective


The Muffat Collective

Position: quartet

The Muffat Collective are a classical music quartet with a difference! 4 incredible musicians, 4 best friends – they live, eat and breath ‘period music’ – that is the incredible music of the sixteenth, seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Each with an impressive solo career at the top of the classical music industry in Australia, Matthew, Rafael, Anthony and Anton join forces to take you back to a historical era full of passion, electrifying vitality and artistic excellence. 

The Collective was formed by the chance meeting of these 4 musicians studying at the same time in The Netherlands. Bonding over their love of ‘period music’ they vowed to return home to bring Australian audiences leading practises and their expertise forged in the most dynamic baroque orchestras of Europe. 

They offer a chance to hear the music of not just well-known composers but also lesser-known baroque musicians in a more dynamic, genuine, and emotionally engaging setting. With period instruments dating from nearly 300 years ago and talents from today, they instill a new vitality into historically informed music making – giving you a memorable and inspiring experience. 

Georg Muffat (c. 1653-1704) – The Muffat Collective namesake

Georg Muffat was a composer, a professor of rhetoric and a traveller. The self-proclaimed German sought to unite different styles and musical tastes not only to “Make perfection in music” but to promote peace amongst the quarrelling nations of Europe. In the spirit of Muffat, our goal is to bring together communities, lovers of music and also those who are new to this style. We believe that there is something in this music for everyone; it has the power to entertain and refresh the spirit! 

“Songs that feel like a walk along a dusty country...

The New Graces


The New Graces

Position: ensemble

“Songs that feel like a walk along a dusty country road – evocative, warm, connected with the land and its people…”  

Melanie Horsnell, Kate Burke and Robyn Martin are all seasoned identities in the Australian music scene. Songwriters and multi-instrumentalists, their music is flavoured with guitar, double bass, mandolin, fiddle, banjo and three part harmonies plus a little desert heat-haze that could only be Australian.  

Between them, they weave tales of farmers, hippies, mothers, sea farers, history, lovers, the ordinary, and the mysterious. Their songs tell stories of their Australia:   desert country steeped in history, wild bush dances, snowy mountains and remote swimming holes, generations of family life on the land, waking up in a sunny Sydney bedroom, returning to favourite old pub to play music with friends. 

Timo-Veikko ‘Tipi’ Valve grew up in Helsinki, surrounded by a family...

Timo-Veikko “Tipi” Valve


Timo-Veikko “Tipi” Valve

Position: cello

Timo-Veikko ‘Tipi’ Valve grew up in Helsinki, surrounded by a family who were “musical, but not musicians”, and who wanted music lessons to be a part of their children’s lives. 

Tipi was encouraged to pick up the cello because one of the teachers at the local music school, upon seeing him as a toddler, declared that he “looks like a cellist.” Tipi is still not sure what this actually means.

Valve is recognized as one of the most  versatile musicians of his generation performing as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral leader on both modern and period instruments. In 2006, Valve was appointed Principal Cello of the Australian Chamber Orchestra. 

 Tipi plays a Brothers Amati cello from 1616, kindly on loan from the ACO Instrument Fund. 

After 8 years of working on his adaptation for the...

William Zappa

actor, director

William Zappa

Position: actor, director

After 8 years of working on his adaptation for the stage, William Zappa’s The Iliad Out Loud was presented in sold out seasons at Sydney Festival 2019 and Adelaide International Arts Festival 2020. Zappa, Dignams Creek and Sydney based is recognized as one of Australia’s greatest stage actors, with a career spanning theatre, film and television; most recently appearing in ABC’s Operations Buffalo, and films Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears and The Dry. 

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