The Conductors and accompanists at the Geelong Youth Choir are highly-qualified in the field of Music Education. The team brings together a wide range of skills and experience that provide choristers with a range of opportunities to develop their vocal and musicianship skills in a supportive environment.
M.M.Ed., Grad.Dip.Ed., Grad.Cert.Orff Mus.Ed., B.E.C.S
Director of Music / Conductor: Cantore Showcase Choir, Key Change, Chamber Choir and Voice 2.0
Denise Hollingworth graduated with a Masters degree in Music Education from the VanderCook College of Music, Chicago, Illinois, majoring in Choral Music Education. Denise has completed extensive studies in the area of children’s musical and vocal development, and has a special interest in the care and development of young voices. Denise has completed studies in Kodály and Orff philosophies of music education, and enjoys incorporating these methodologies in a creative approach to teaching.
Denise has taught in a variety of settings ranging from early childhood to tertiary levels and regularly presents workshops for teachers on the topics of Music Education and Children’s Vocal Development. She was the guest conductor at the Geelong Summer Music Camp, Morrison Singers, in 2008 and 2009. In addition to her work at GYC, Denise teaches music and choirs in schools. She has been teaching with the Geelong Youth Choir since 2004 and is the conductor for the Cantore, Chamber and Raise the Bar Choirs.
M.M.Ed., B,Mus (Hons)., B.A., B.Ed., AMusA
Conductor: Prelude Choir (Thursday Group)
Janelle Kratzmann is a graduate of the University of Queensland, where she completed a Bachelor of Music Degree with Honours (violin performance), Bachelor of Arts Degree (double major in German Studies) and Bachelor of Education Degree. She has since obtained her Master of Music Education from Monash University. Janelle began her teaching career in Brisbane high schools before moving to Geelong in 2004 where she has taught at Geelong Grammar, St. John’s Lutheran School and Geelong Lutheran College.
Janelle works as a classroom Music and German teacher and strings specialist. She has directed student choirs and instrumental ensembles as well as Kodály musicianship workshops with adult community choirs in Melbourne. She is passionate about the Kodály philosophy of music education and has completed Level 1 and Level 2 Kodály Teacher Training Secondary Courses.
Janelle performs professionally with various orchestral and small ensembles in Geelong, adjudicates for the Geelong Advertiser Regional Music Competition and has been an active committee member for the Geelong Summer Music Camp. She joined the Geelong Youth Choir as a conductor in 2005.
Conductor: Raise the Bar Vocal Group / Vivace Early Years Music Program
Laura is passionate music educator and thoroughly enjoys working with students through choirs, ensembles and classroom teaching. She has worked as a strings andchoral conductor for 10 years across a wide variety of programs, including Melbourne Symphony Orchestra’s Pizzicato Effect, Border Music Camp, NSW Arts Unit, Riverina Strings and Recorder Camp and a number of primary and secondary schools.
As well as an enthusiastic educator, Laura also specialises in Historical Performance Practice, teaching and performing on the Viola da Gamba and baroque cello. She has made guest appearances with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Ironwood Chamber Ensemble and the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, Laura has participated in many ABC recordings with ensembles such as Josie and the Emeralds and Latitude 37.
Conductor: Prelude Choir (Monday Group)
Teresa is a performer and educator in Opera and Theatre in Australia and abroad. She holds a Bachelor of Music and Arts from the University of Melbourne, a Masters of Opera Performance from the Chicago College of Performing Arts USA and is currently completing her Masters of Teaching at Deakin University. She is a grant recipient from the Tait Memorial Trust, Opus 50 and the Opera and Arts Support Group.
In addition to performing as a singer and actor, Teresa currently develops and delivers music programs in disadvantaged schools throughout Victoria, leads a number of community choirs, and teaches private voice lessons.
As a performer Teresa has worked in opera and theatre in Australia, USA, and Europe. International performances include Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro with the Lyric Opera Studio of Weimar and Clorinda in La Cenerentola with the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Whilst living in the USA Teresa worked with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Chorus for two years under the baton of conductors including Riccardo Muti and Pierre Boulez.
Since returning to Australia in 2012 Teresa’s performances have included Cindy and Wendy in Contact! (as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival), Kate Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, Naomi in Cinderella with Gertrude Opera, and the role of Lady Thiang (covered and performed) in Opera Australia/GFO’s national tour of The King and I. She has performed at Mofo Festival in Tasmania performing the work of uk composer Mira Calix, and toured the role of Sharon in Master Class with Left Bauer Productions. Roles with Victorian Opera included Rose (understudy) in What Next?, Cathy in Little Deaths, Madame Mao (understudy) and a chorus member in Nixon in China, a member of the dance ensemble in Maria De Beunos Aires and ensemble member in Sweeney Todd.
Since completing her formal voice training, Teresa has enjoyed performance opportunities in opera, music theatre, cabaret, experimental theatre, oratorio and recital settings. She has also worked as a featured actor in television commercials and theatre.
Teresa brings together her extensive experience as a performing artist and educator to utilise her creativity for social change to teach meaning as much as method and to harness her voice in a larger context.
Kym Dillon is an emerging composer; arranger; orchestrator, pianist and conductor, who is currently based in Melbourne and Geelong. Starting out his career as a jazz pianist, he soon turned to composition, and his work now regularly spans multiple genres and areas of musical practice.
He completed a Bachelor of Music Performance Honours in composition at the Victorian College of the Arts, studying under such teachers as Anthony Lyons, Mark Pollard, and John McCaughey. He was awarded the ‘Beleura Sir George Tallis Award’ from the ‘Friends of the VCA’ for his work in the course in 2009; and the ‘Beleura John Tallis Award’ in 2010. He composed and performed two original jazz works for the VCA Improvisation Series in 2009, for which his ensemble won the ‘Athanaeum Prize’.
Kym has had original works commissioned by such groups as the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Astra Chamber Music Society, and Musica Viva; and his music has been performed in Canada, the U.K., North America, Canada, Romania and Italy. His work often seeks to explore the relationship between intuitive and systematic composition, and the nature of creativity. 2014 saw Kym collaborate with choreographer Jude Walton on her project Lehte, composing and performing music directly tied to the space of Heide II.
As a pianist he performs regularly in jazz/contemporary contexts, often as a soloist but frequently as an accompanist to vocalists, such as in May 2015 where he performed on piano as part of the Melbourne Comedy Festival show, Larry Paradiseo and the Fabulous Dame Farrar. His work as an accompanist and arranger regularly brings him to schools around Victoria, such as Christian College Geelong, Geelong College, Ballarat Grammar, Geelong Grammar, and Loreto College. He is regularly commissioned to compose new material for student ensembles, including multiple jazz pieces for big band, a processional, and pieces for an orchestra/rock band combination.
He occasionally works as a freelance journalist for the major entertainment website IGN.com, where he has written a variety of articles on the subject of music in interactive media. Kym is also the lead conductor for the charity Creativity Australia’s ‘With One Voice’ program, which seeks to connect people from different walks of life through community singing. As part of this role he conducts four choirs each week, in Geelong, Melbourne, Ashburton and Altona Meadows, and has led these choirs to perform at venues such as the Melbourne Town Hall, Melbourne Recital Centre, and the Monash carols in Jells Park 2013.
Find out more about Kym here.
James has been involved with music education for more than 20 years. He completed his Diploma of Music in Geelong and a Bachelor of Music Performance – Jazz, in Perth at WAAPA.
In 2008, James became a classroom music teacher, and currently teaches at Geelong College. He has always been involved in choirs, and loves everything that it has to offer.
James has taught in numerous roles at the Geelong Summer Music Camp (GSMC) over the past ten years. He currently plays keyboard in various tribute shows such as Fleetwood Mac, John Farnham and Matchbox Twenty. James also plays with Soul Sister Swing and other jazz combos. He has a great passion for music and music education.
B. Mus (Therapy) Hons., B. Ed.
Early Childhood Music Specialist: Let’s Make Music!
Bron Lawson graduated from the University of Melbourne with a Music degree majoring in Therapy but the call to teach later led her to Deakin University where she completed an Education degree. An early childhood music teacher for over ten years, she has facilitated parent-child music groups in both educational and therapeutic settings. She has a passion for providing a developmentally appropriate music education for very young children that draws on the Kodály and Orff philosophies. Bron also has a special interest in working with kids with special needs and has worked in early intervention playgroup settings at Noah’s Ark and in a parent support role at Kids Plus Foundation, a program offering intensive therapy for babies, kids and teens with neuro-motor disabilities.
In addition to teaching in a variety of settings including classroom teaching, school choirs and childcare staff training, Bron has demonstrated a passion for community arts by managing projects including ‘whatem choo’ – a CD of fun and funky songs for little kids, ‘Different Strokes’ – a visual arts project for kids with a disability and ‘Uncovering the Bellarine’ – a unique nude calendar project. In 2009, she co-founded Bluebird Foundation Inc., a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to making quality Arts programs accessible for all. Through Bluebird Foundation she shares the joy of music with young parents, kids with disabilities and older adults.
However, Bron is still enchanted by the joyous participation of kids and parents alike in her preschool music classes. Her gentle manner and infectious personality bring the music to life and she is excited to be able to share the wonder of music with babies, toddlers, preschoolers and the adults that love them at Let’s Make Music!