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Louise Bennet
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More than 100 young musicians will embark on their first international tour when the University of Melbourne Symphony Orchestra travels to Singapore and Shanghai later this month.

The tour will give students the opportunity to experience and learn from the challenges and rewards of rehearsing, travelling and performing internationally.

It will also highlight the world-class learning facilities available to music students at the University of Melbourne.

As part of the tour, aspiring students in both cities will be able to audition to study at the Melbourne Conservatorium at the University of Melbourne.

Melbourne Conservatorium Director and Ormond Professor Gary McPherson said the tour is an opportunity for talented young musicians in the orchestra to perform in two of Asia’s most exciting and dynamic cities under the conductorship of Associate Professor Richard Davis.

“Our tour program – which features the world premiere of a new work by recent Melbourne Conservatorium alumna Alice Humphries alongside gems by Elgar and Shostakovich – offers something for every lover of music at its finest,” Professor McPherson said.

“We’re also incredibly excited to be holding auditions in Singapore and Shanghai for talented musicians who are considering a range of our courses and specialities at the Melbourne Conservatorium.”

Faculty of Fine Arts and Music Dean Barry Conyngham said there is a palpable sense of excitement about the tour, which kicks off with a concert at the Melbourne Recital Centre on Friday 21 September.

“My own time studying and performing in Asia as a young musician furnished me with a great many memories that set the course not just for my career but for my outlook as a composer,” Professor Conyngham said.

Melbourne’s vibrant arts community is a drawcard for the one of the world’s most liveable cities and an ambitious $200 million redevelopment of University of Melbourne facilities at Southbank confirms Melbourne’s reputation as an international hub for the arts.

Professor Conyngham said the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music would relocate from its historic home in the University’s Parkville campus to a new, $109 million Ian Potter Southbank Centre in the Faculty of Fine Arts and Music Southbank campus in Southbank.

Professor Conyngham said the Ian Potter Southbank Centre is the jewel in the crown of the Southbank redevelopment.

“The tour comes at a time of great investment by the University in the future of music training,” he said.

“The new Ian Potter Southbank Centre will feature a 400-seat concert hall and a 200-seat orchestral auditorium alongside a state-of-the-art teaching, rehearsal and performance facilities.”

The University of Melbourne offers a two-year Master of Music (Orchestral Performance) which is the first of its kind in the Asia Pacific and is designed to provide future generations of performing musicians with the skills required to develop their careers both nationally and internationally.

Students develop elite-level performance skills performing alongside Melbourne Symphony Orchestra musicians who also mentor the students as they progress through a course, learning to manage their professional lives and understand what it takes physically and mentally to sustain a career across decades of performing music.

The Singapore concert is on Tuesday 25 September at the Esplanade Concert Hall, Singapore. The Shanghai concert will be held on Friday 28 September at the Shanghai Symphony Concert Hall. More information is available here.

Singapore auditions will be held on Monday 24 September 2018, 9am – 5pm (SOMA, Singapore) for the following programs at the Melbourne Conservatorium: Bachelor of Music (Music Performance, Composition, Musicology or Ethnomusicology); Bachelor of Music (Honours) (Music Performance, Composition, Musicology or Ethnomusicology); Master of Music (Performance Teaching); Master of Music (Orchestral Performance); Master of Music (Music Performance). Visit relevant course pages for information on how to apply for auditions.

Shanghai auditions will be held on Thursday 27 September, 9am–5pm (Shanghai Conservatorium of Music) for the following programs at the Melbourne Conservatorium: Bachelor of Music (Music Performance, Composition, Musicology or Ethnomusicology); Bachelor of Music (Honours) (Music Performance, Composition, Musicology or Ethnomusicology); Master of Music (Performance Teaching); Master of Music (Orchestral Performance); Master of Music (Music Performance). Visit relevant course pages for information on how to apply for auditions.