More information about our artists for upcoming concerts coming soon.

Guest Artists in 2024

Nicholas Cowall - conductor

Nicholas Cowall - conductor
Nicholas Cowall - conductor

Nicholas Cowall is an experienced music educator, conductor, vocal coach, and singer. He is one of the leading interpreters and promoters of Russian Choral and Vocal Music in Australia and has conducted opera, orchestral and choral ensembles both in Australia and overseas. Nicholas has worked as a Director of Music in both Catholic and Independent school settings in Melbourne and has completed tertiary music study at Monash University, Melbourne University, the Moscow Conservatoire and the Victorian College of the Arts. In 2016 he was awarded a Medal of Merit from the Russian Australian Representative Council for his work in promoting Russian Music in Australia. Nicholas has delivered courses in conducting at Monash University and has assisted in preparing choirs for Vladimir Ashkenazy, Oleg Caetani, Simon Halsey, Valery Gergiev, Marcus Stenz and Carlo Ricci. He is currently the Head of Choral Music at Xavier College in Melbourne, the current chair of the Australia and New Zealand Diocesan Liturgical Music Committee (ROCOR), a freelance conductor, choral workshop clinician and adjudicator.

Judith Dodsworth - soprano

Judith Dodsworth - soprano 2024

As a classical soprano of “extraordinary range and versatility”, Judith Dodsworth is equally at home in opera, chamber music and on the concert platform. She has long been a champion of new and diverse vocal repertoire, ranging from the pre-baroque to works upon which the ink is still drying. Following studies in Canberra, London, Vienna and Melbourne and numerous performances, developments and recordings in Australia and overseas, she has established a reputation as one of Australia’s leading exponents of contemporary classical vocal music.

Judith’s operatic roles have included Carmen (OzOpera), Greta in Metamorphosis (Victorian Opera), Sophie in From a Black Sky (The Street Theatre), lead roles in Rameau’s Pygmalion (Stopera), Opiume (Singapore and Hong Kong Festivals), Miss Donnithorne’s Maggot (with Syzygy Ensemble) and A Drone Opera (Experimenta). Judith sang the role of Clara in the premiere of Gordon Kerry’s Midnight Son for Victorian Opera with less than twenty-four hours’ notice. She was one of four soloists in the premiere of Cat Hope’s acclaimed new opera Speechless for Perth Festival.

Notable performances in 2023/2024 have included the Australian premiere of Naarasäiti (The Lustful Mother) by Finnish composer Outi Tarkiainen with the Australian String Quartet, as well as Pierre Boulez’s seminal Le marteau sans maître, in Chamber Landscapes for Adelaide Festival. She returned to South Australia in November for UKARIA 24 with UK violinist Anthony Marwood and will give the world premiere of Is this the Gate? by Nicholas Lens at the 2024 Adelaide Festival. Other upcoming performances in 2024 include Homophonic! in Midsumma Festival and recitals at Tempo Rubato and Music at McClelland Gallery with harpsichordist Joy Lee.

With award-winning composer Kevin March and supported by Creative Australia and Kingston Council for the Arts, Judith is currently developing and performing The Unknown Swimmer. This immersive and deeply personal chamber opera to her own libretto will premiere at fortyfivedownstairs’ festival of chamber music.

Judith thrives on her continued collaboration with a wide range of composers, creators, musicians, artists and ensembles, and as a performer, writer, educator and illustrator, she is passionate about cross-disciplinary art.

Vivien Hamilton - mezzo-soprano

Vivien Hamilton (for 2024)

Vivien Hamilton is a Melbourne-based singer and music educator who has chalked up forty years in the music profession. Her musical passions and innate curiosity led her into a musical career in which she has explored seven centuries of musical style — from the medieval era, through opera and into the 21st century — through the prism of historically informed and contemporary performance practice.

Vivien studied with Molly McGurk (Artsong: Perth, WA) and Jane Manning (Contemporary song: UK), David Mason (Opera: UK) and musicology (specialising the French Baroque Music) with Professor David Tunley (University of Western Australia). But Vivien counts the influence of her parents' love for music as a prime instigator in her desire to pursue music as a profession. Her father Tom sang tenor in the Edinburgh Festival Chorus performance of Mahler's 2nd Symphony at Ely Cathedral under the baton of Leonard Bernstein, a dramatisation which can be seen in the film "Maestro" starring Bradley Cooper.

Vivien's singing is renowned for its nuanced lyricism and vibrant tonal clarity, whether she finds herself on the concert hall stage, singing for festivals, on radio and television or on film. She is equally at home as soloist or ensemble player and has performed with Kent Opera, New Sadlers Wells Opera, The Hilliard Ensemble, BBC Singers, e21, Blackbird (USA), 6 Degrees, Icon Trio, Barry Kosky, and pianists Len Vorster, Ian Munro and Glenn Riddle, amongst others.

Vivien taught at tertiary level for Monash University where she conducted the Women's Choir and Rockin' Jazz Swingers and singing at the Australian Catholic University. Whilst on staff at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music she was director of Early Voices 2005-2015 — an ensemble which has produced professional singers working in Europe with Jordi Savall, Paul Hillier, Emma Kirkby (e.g. Ars Nova Copenhagen, Bach Collegium Barcelona, La Capella Real de Catalunya, Las Huelgas, Lux Musicae, Theatre of Voices, Vienna VolkOper, Westminster Abbey, etc) — and also lectured in vocal pedagogy for the Bachelor and Master of Music Education degrees at the University of Melbourne.

"A versatile vocalist with unerring control" and "splendidly accomplished" Clive O'Connell, The Age

For more details please visit

Roger Lord - piano

Roger Lord

Canadian pianist Roger Lord from Moncton in Eastern Canada, has won First Prizes in piano in the Canadian Music Competition as well as in the Canadian National Festival of Music. He toured extensively with Jeunesses Musicales playing over 120 concerts in Canada and in Europe between 1987 and 1992. His various engagements have since taken him to some of the world's great cities such as Paris, New York, Oslo, Vienna, Parma, Montreal, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, Santiago de Chile, Quito, Cairo, Tunis, Riyadh, Seoul, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Saigon, Beijing, Shanghai, Tokyo, etc. He has performed as a soloist with orchestra on four continents. Hailed at the “Piano Prince of Canada” by the China Daily, in 2013, he was one of the guest artists on one of the prestigious Chinese New Year TV Galas broadcast for hundreds of millions of viewers. In that same year, with his CD entitled Chinese Treasures, which was recorded in Beijing, he became the “First non-Chinese pianist in the world to release a CD of Chinese piano music”. He has travelled 32 times to China and was named one of “150 illustrious Canadian things and people” on the popular Chinese website Sina Weibo. Dr. Lord served as an adjudicator for several national and international music competitions in Canada, USA, Malaysia, and Australia.

He studied in Canada at Université de Moncton, McGill University, Université de Montréal as well as in Paris and Strasbourg, France. He also attended special summer sessions of the Moscow Piano Institute in Russia at the Gnessin Music Academy. He holds a Doctorate in Music and is presently Professor of Piano and Director of the Music Department at the Université de Moncton.

Melbourne Cappella

Melbourne Capella Chamber Choir
Melbourne Capella Chamber Choir

Founded in 2009, Melbourne Cappella Chamber choir is an ensemble consisting of professional choral and operatic singers. The members of ensemble include composers, finalists and prize winners of Australia’s most prestigious singing competitions. The size of the ensemble varies depending on the demands of the music. The ensemble takes the name “Cappella” from the Imperial Court Cappella of Melbourne’s sister city- St Petersburg. The Imperial Court Cappella was founded on the choral traditions of composer Dimitry Bortniansky (1751-1825). During Bortniansky’s tenure, the choir not only sang at services in the court churches, but also became increasingly involved in concert performances of opera, masses, oratorios, motets, and cantatas by non-Russian composers. Melbourne Cappella continues this same tradition of performing both sacred and secular repertoire whilst maintaining musical excellence under the direction of Nicholas Cowall. Melbourne Cappella has presented the Australian premieres of works by Andrew Ford, Pavel Chesnokov, Pyotr Tchaikovsky and Dmitri Shostakovich, and has performed at Melbourne’s finest concert venues including the Melbourne Recital Centre, Hamer Hall and Rippon Lea Estate.

Roman Ponomariov - horn

Roman Ponomariov 2024

Roman Ponomariov’s work as a teacher, academic, and performer is unified by his commitment to achieving artistic excellence. Roman has performed with all of the major Australian Symphony Orchestras and is a recipient of several awards for excellence in music. He frequently tutors the participants of the Australian Youth Orchestra, and Melbourne Youth Orchestra, as well as presents guest masterclasses.

Roman has produced broadcast recordings for 3MBS and ABC Classic FM, and as a soloist has featured alongside the Western Australian Youth Orchestra and Adelaide Symphony, Zelman, Stonnington, and Heidelberg Symphony Orchestras.

A champion of chamber repertoire, Roman frequently collaborates with local and international artists. He is the Coordinator of Brass and a lecturer in classical performance (French Horn) at the Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music and Performance at Monash University.

Josephine Vains - cello

Josephine Vains (with cello scroll)

Josephine is a versatile and engaging performer, heard regularly in concert around Australia and overseas as a cellist and chamber musician. She has worked with myriad artists on diverse projects including piano trio/quartet /quintet, string quartet, opera, baroque ensembles, contemporary and electronic music, and Argentine tango music. She is a passionate educator, currently training the next generation of musicians at Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School and the University of Melbourne. She is a regular tutor for Melbourne and Australian Youth Orchestra, Mt. Buller and Clunes Chamber Music, Pettmann National Junior Academy (NZ) and for iartschool (China).

Josephine is a founding member of Firebird Trio, lauded as a ‘fabulous internal communicator’ in The Age. Equally at home on modern and period instruments, Josephine performs and records regularly with other ensembles including CellOZ, Ensemble Old and New, Ludovico’s Band, Accademia Arcadia, Elysium Ensemble and Melbourne Baroque Orchestra.

In Australia she has performed for Musica Viva and Sydney, Adelaide and Melbourne Festivals. International performances include at the Musicfest Vancouver, White Nights Festival (Russia), Longyou Caves Festival (China) and Akaroa Chamber Music Festival (NZ).

Today she performs on a Thomas Kennedy Cello, (1850) London, on loan from the estate of Annette Martin.

Yi Wang - violin

Yi Wang

Yi is a prize winner of both the Chinese National violin competition and Rudolf Lipizer International competition held in Italy. After completing his undergraduate study at the Beijing Central Conservatory with Prof. Zhi Long Wang, Yi travelled to London to continue his postgraduate course with the world-renowned violinist and educator Yfrah Neaman. He was awarded the prestigious Concert Recital Diploma-Premier Prix in 1994 and in 1995 was offered the position of Assistant Concertmaster with the Welsh National Opera.

Yi came to Australia in 1997 to join the Australian Chamber Orchestra and from 2001-2007 he was Principal First Violin with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, with which he was also Acting Concertmaster and Associate Concertmaster. Yi was director and leader of Virtuosi Tasmania Chamber Orchestra and he also led the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria on many occasions. In 2008 he moved to Melbourne to join Orchestra Victoria as Principal Violin, now holding the deputy concertmaster position.

As a soloist, Yi has performed with the Tasmania Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Victoria, Moldova Symphony and Chinese Youth Orchestra and has given recitals in London, Beijing, Sydney, Melbourne, Weimar, Hobart, Suffolk (UK) and Hangzhou (China).

In recent years, Yi has been involved in developing music education in China, including participating in the Beijing Chamber Music Festival, giving masterclasses in the Central Conservatory of Music (Beijing) and Macau Conservatory, also leading and directing the Chinese Youth Orchestra. He teaches violin in both Melbourne University and Monash University, tutoring for Australian Youth Orchestra at the same time. He is a founding member of the Melbourne-based Waratah String Quartet. Yi’s violin is made by the Italian master Riccardo Antoniazzi.

Upcoming Events

Classic Music in Historic Venues 2024 - 2025

supported by the Colin & Cicely Rigg Bequest

We are delighted to announce that Team of Pianists' recitals will continue in the second half of 2024 and the first half of 2025. Details of the outstanding guest artists, fabulous venues and attractive recital programs will be available here soon!


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