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Ryan Sheales (Media Unit)
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0402 351 412

Alix Bromley (on campus)
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0410 889 509

The Victorian College of the Arts and the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music will have a rich international flavour over the coming weeks, with four renowned foreign artists visiting to teach students.

Italian composer Riccardo Vaglini, Japanese percussionist Kuniko Kato, American pianist Craig Shepphard and celebrated costumier Susie Vickery (who divides her time between Britain, India and China) will take part in the Master Teacher Program.

The program is supported by Arts Victoria, and involves bringing prominent artists to the University of Melbourne to help mentor and inspire the next generation.

Professor Vaglini - who's normally based at the Venice Conservatorium - is known for his contemporary compositions, and as a performer, arranger and editor.

He has produced about  800 scores of new music from contemporary composers through the co-operative publisher, ArsPublica, which he founded.

Vaglini will participate in a series of one-on-one tutorials with selected VCA Music students during his time as an artist-in-residence.

He'll also collaborate with local artist Tom Nicholson to present new work for Radio Alice, which is an exhibition inspired by a decade-long wave of intense social upheaval in Italy during the 1970s.

Susie Vickery will run a series of costume workshops for VCA Production students, teaching them her trademark tailoring styles which employ a variety of recycled materials.

Regarded as one of the most gifted percussionists of her generation, Kuniko Kato's residency will culminate with a concert featuring Melbourne Conservatorium of Music students.

And Craig Sheppard — described by the Seattle Times as being “blessed with a formidable intellect and an equally formidable technique” — will bookend his student mentoring and residency with two performances.

Faculty of VCA & MCM Dean Professor Barry Conyngham said the students were privileged to be exposed to such renowned artists.

"The Master Teacher program is fantastic in providing inspiration to students from some of the world’s most stimulating artists during their visit to Melbourne, and imparting a wealth of knowledge, experience and transferable skills," he said.

* Riccardo Vaglini (Italy, contemporary composer): Now - 22 Sep
* Kuniko Kato (Japan, percussionist): 9 – 15 Sep
* Susie Vickery (Costumier): 3-14 Sep
* Craig Sheppard (USA, piano): 3 – 14 Sep

Interview/photo opportunities and details of performances/exhibitions available upon request.