Carolyn began piano lessons at the age of 7 with Jan White, and oboe lessons with Norman Weiner at the age of 12 when she was accepted into the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School. Oboe became her principal study instrument, and she later graduated from the VCA having also studied with Jeffrey Crellin and Neil Stafford.
Since graduating Carolyn has participated in Kenja communication training, which has helped her to further develop her performance and communication skills. Using the work of Ken Dyers and Jan Hamilton, Kenja is a training that focuses on the subtle energies of communication, and is very applicable to music composition and performance.
Through activities at Kenja, Carolyn has also been able to pursue other interests such as ballet, ballroom dancing, tap dancing, netball, gymnastics and hockey. These activities have provided many varied avenues of expression which have in turn enhanced her compositional style.
Carolyn has played oboe with the Australian Philharmonic Orchestra and the Australian Youth Orchestra. On piano she has performed as an accompanist for many recitals, examinations and masterclasses, and has been employed as an audition accompanist by the Melbourne Theatre Company and the Australian National Academy of Music.
Carolyn began composing at the age of 7, beginning with small pieces for piano (which her father enthusiastically recorded with a tape recorder). Since then she has composed works for small ensemble, chamber orchestra, oboe, clarinet, flute, ‘cello, horn, tuba, trumpet and voice.
Carolyn has been teaching piano and oboe for over 20 years and has composed many pieces for students of both these instruments. She has held teaching positions at schools such as Melbourne Grammar School, Geelong Grammar School, Wesley College and St Catherine’s School, and currently has a busy private teaching practice.
Carolyn has composed many works which have been performed by the Kenja Melbourne Orchestra, a unique ensemble made up of both amateur and professional musicians who participate in Kenja training. This ensemble has performed in many public concerts and community events, including the Sustainable Living Festival at Melbourne’s Federation Square. On the outdoor stage they performed Carolyn’s work; Journey into the Sunlight, featuring erhu soloist Cai Chun Sheng.
Her choral work; Christmas Skies was composed for the Ashton Smith Singers of Australia, who premiered the piece in December 2008.
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