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Our teachers

Catriona DeVere  ​ B.A, M.Mus

Catriona has performed as a soloist with Victoria State Opera, Opera Factory, George Limb Opera Company, Yarra Theatre Company, Melbourne City Opera and Opera Australia. She has also performed as a soloist with various groups including the Wesley Music Foundation, ACT Lieder Society, SCUNA and the Canberra Choral Society. Catriona’s operatic roles include the title roles in Suor Angelica, Dido & Aeneas, Manon Lescaut and Tosca. She has performed at Government House for the then Governor General, Major General Michael Jeffery. Recitals include solos in: Faure Requiem, Handel Messiah, Strauss Four Last Songs, Mozart Requiem, Mozart Coronation Mass, Mozart Mass in C minor, Haydn Lord Nelson Mass, various Bach Cantatas, Haydn Creation and Brahms German Requiem.

 

Catriona has taught singing since 2000 in coeducational and girls' schools including St Leonard's, Methodist Ladies’ College (Melbourne) and Merici College (Canberra). She has taught adults at the Australian National University (pre-tertiary), the Wesley Music Foundation, and privately. Following completion of her B.A at the University of Melbourne, Catriona was granted scholarships from Opera Australia and the Goethe Institut to travel to Germany to study with the singing renowned coach Martino Stamos. Catriona holds a Master of Music from the Australian National University, where she furthered her studies with internationally acclaimed soprano, Celina Lindsley.

Catriona teaches classical, pop, contemporary and jazz. She specialises in preparation for VCE Music Performance.

Justin Jacobs​   B.Mus

Justin has over 20 years of professional experience in the music industry, including teaching the piano for 15 years in New York City. He teaches classical and contemporary styles at all levels and to all ages. Justin specialises in teaching young children, from the age of 3. He offers a warm, fun and patient learning environment with an emphasis on developing music reading skills, musicality and healthy piano technique. He is a fully accredited member of the Victorian Music Teachers' Association (VMTA).

 

After completing a Bachelor of Music degree at the University of Melbourne, Justin was employed by the Victoria State Opera and Opera Australia, where he worked for three years as an accompanist and vocal coach. Justin was appointed Director of Music at the National Theatre Music Theatre Department in 1997 and went on to conduct and musically direct several Broadway productions playing in Australia, among them “Fiddler on the Roof”, “The Boy from Oz,” and “Forbidden Broadway.” When not touring with these productions in Australia, he maintained a busy schedule as a piano teacher and accompanist, working regularly with celebrated Australian singers and major choral ensembles including the Melbourne Chorale, for whom he was the official accompanist for five years. During this time, Justin studied regularly with the brilliant pianist and teacher, Caroline Almonte, in Melbourne. 

 

In 2000, Justin moved to New York, to continue piano studies with the Taubman Institute and later the Golandsky Institute. Justin studied privately with master teacher, Edna Golandsky in weekly lessons for 15 years. His passion for the piano music of Chopin, culminated in two trips to Poland to further his research. Later, studying in New York, he worked as a piano teacher and accompanist, organist and music director. Justin was the music director of the US-based "Greensboro Arts Alliance and Residency" in Vermont for 6 years. He has continued studies with Edna Golandsky in lessons via Skype, since returning to Melbourne in late 2015.

Issie Brown   A.Mus.A with Distinction

Issie is a talented and experienced flautist who gained the rare honour of Distinction in the AMEB AMus diploma. She was awarded the Leslie Barklamb Flute Award for 2016. This award is offered to a candidate aged 23 years or under, who demonstrates exceptional performance skills in an Associate Flute examination and who satisfies the additional Theory requirements. In 2012, Issie was awarded a Music Scholarship to further her flute studies at Ivanhoe Girls' Grammar School. Currently completing Year 12, Issie has several times been a guest soloist at Toorak Uniting Church, and for the Youth Bands Program. She has been one of the Australian Youth Orchestra Young Symphonists, and is currently principal Piccolo in the Melbourne Youth Orchestra.

Issie loves playing with groups and is devoted to communicating her passion for the instrument to others. Issie teaches both classical and contemporary flute and Music Theory.