For me, being a part of WAYO is such an enjoyable experience, to be able to play alongside talented young musicians and make music together is so much fun! I love the opportunity to perform huge symphonies and pieces that are usually tackled by professional orchestras. It fills me with so much pride that a group of young musicians can bring these pieces to life at an exceptional level. Each season, the path from the very first rehearsal to final concert is a remarkable journey. I am always amazed by the dedication of each member and the teamwork between the orchestra and conductor – moving from ‘I have no idea how to play this!’ to a stunning concert performance. WAYO’s partnership with WASO provides the incredible opportunity to perform alongside musicians from a world class professional orchestra. This year our Side by Side concert is Pictures at an Exhibition, which is actually the first piece I saw a professional orchestra play, so it will be a bit of a full circle moment!

I’ve been a part of WAYO several times over the years, having first joined Collegium in 2016. I loved the opportunity to play with other kids my age on a state level, it was so encouraging and exciting to be there! After taking a few years off and rediscovering my passion for music and orchestral playing, I auditioned for the 2020 season and gained a place in the Philharmonic Orchestra. Performing a movement of Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique made me realise how much I wanted to be able to perform more pieces like that. It motivated me to audition for WAYO’s highest orchestra and in 2022 I was successful in receiving a place in WAYO. So this year ahead will be my fifth with WAYO!

Highlights during my time with WAYO have included performing Rite of Spring with conductor Jon Tooby. It was amazing to play a piece of such complexity that I had grown up hearing about and seeing professional orchestras perform. Having the opportunity to be conducted by Tze Law Chan was also an incredible experience. His skilful ability to get to the heart of the music and explore its layers was fascinating to be a part of. One of my favourite composers is Rachmaninov, so being able to perform his Piano Concerto No. 2 with New Zealand soloist Liam Wooding last year was a dream come true!

Receiving the Henry Pether Violin Scholarship means a great deal to me. I am thrilled to play such a beautiful, historical instrument with such depth of sound, and I’m looking forward to being able to explore its qualities while developing my skills and musicality. Playing in WAYO is an exhilarating experience, and with this magnificent instrument it will be even more rewarding. Thank you to the generous donors I’m so incredibly grateful!