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Virtuosic & Curious Instrumentalists

About Us

Ensemble Offspring

“In a music industry that can often feel impenetrable - most of all for marginalised voices - its mission is not just honourable, but essential. In other words, it is not just doing the right thing, it is doing what’s necessary for the survival of new music in Australia.” Cut Common

Sydney’s musical maverick Ensemble Offspring, unite the most innovative instrumentalists in Australia with a broad collective of collaborators to explore new ideas through living new music. Led by acclaimed percussionist Claire Edwardes, the ensemble comprises a core line-up of some of Australia’s most well-regarded and virtuosic musicians: Lamorna Nightingale (flute), Jason Noble (clarinet), Véronique Serret (violin), Blair Harris & Freya Schack-Arnott (cello), Bree van Reyk (percussion) and Zubin Kanga & Ben Kopp (piano). Together we champion living composers and create musical experiences that stimulate the senses and pique curiosity. We support emerging and as-yet-unheard composers, in particular championing Australian female identifying and First Nations artists.

Our Community

Our varied collaborations stretch artistic horizons and advance the ever-expanding landscape of new music. Since 2014 our Hatched Academy program has nurtured the next generation of Australian musicians and composers, while our First Nations Composer Program has fostered the careers of Indigenous musicians since 2017. For a decade our Sizzle series has been experienced annually at local and regional bowling clubs, garnering a cult following along the way. Recent partnerships include Ensemble Adapter (Berlin), International Contemporary Ensemble (New York), Sydney Chamber Opera (Sydney) and The Living Room Theatre (Sydney).

Our Highlights

In 2020 we celebrated 25 years of innovative new music making and the astounding journey we have taken from a student group – originally named the Spring Ensemble – to the internationally esteemed ensemble we are today. In 2019 we received the Sidney Myer Performing Arts Group Award; the same year we were selected to showcase at the international music market, Classical:NEXT (Rotterdam), and were also nominated for our first ARIA Award in the Best Children’s Album category. In 2016, we won the APRA Art Music Award for Excellence by an Organisation. Our recent tours have taken us as far afield as Amsterdam, Berlin, Glasgow, Hong Kong and Shanghai, and we feature regularly at Tasmania’s Mona Foma Festival and Sydney Festival. Committed to subverting the classical music tradition with experiential concerts of living new music across genre, place and art form, Ensemble Offspring are navigating the future with open mindedness, flexibility and joy – we invite you to join us on our adventures ahead.

Freya Schack-Arnott
Zubin Kanga
Bree van Reyk
Benjamin Kopp
Blair Harris
Véronique Serret
Lamorna Nightingale
Jason Noble
Claire Edwardes
Claire Edwardes
Jason Noble
Lamorna Nightingale
Véronique Serret
Blair Harris
Benjamin Kopp
Bree van Reyk
Zubin Kanga
Freya Schack-Arnott

Musicians

Claire Edwardes

Percussion / Artistic Director

Internationally acclaimed percussion soloist, chamber musician and artistic director of Ensemble Offspring, Claire Edwardes has been described by the press as a ‘sorceress of percussion’. Graduating as Student of the …

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Internationally acclaimed percussion soloist, chamber musician and artistic director of Ensemble Offspring, Claire Edwardes has been described by the press as a ‘sorceress of percussion’. Graduating as Student of the Year in 1997 from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, she went on to win the coveted Symphony Australia Young Performers Award in 1999. She subsequently relocated to The Netherlands to undertake a Masters Degree at the Rotterdam and Amsterdam Conservatories. A resident there for seven years, she was the recipient of many international awards and prizes. Claire was the 2005 MCA/Freedman Fellow and she is the only Australian to win three APRA Art Music Awards for Excellence by an Individual for her contribution to Australian Music (2016, 2012, 2007). In her role as Artistic Director of Ensemble Offspring she commissions, programs and performs to the highest level, some of the most innovative and cutting-edge new music being presented worldwide today. Recent highlights include a residency at Music on Main (Vancouver), performances of the Australian premiere of James McMillan’s 2nd Percussion Concerto with the Sydney Symphony at the Sydney Opera House and the creation of her dance show entitled ‘Recital’ premiering at Dance Massive in 2019, with director Gideon Obarzanek, dancer Richard Cilli and co-composer Paul Mac. www.claireedwardes.com

Jason Noble

Clarinet

Jason Noble is one of Australia’s most versatile clarinetists, spanning the classical to highly experimental and improvisatory genres. As a core member of Ensemble Offspring for about 20 years, Jason …

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Jason Noble is one of Australia’s most versatile clarinetists, spanning the classical to highly experimental and improvisatory genres. As a core member of Ensemble Offspring for about 20 years, Jason has performed contemporary new music at festivals from Warsaw to London, Shanghai to Kabul, and around Australia, working largely with living composers. His album releases include THRUM (2020) – a collection of improvised ambient sounds created with Kim Cunio on piano – and Chi’s Cakewalk (2017), an album of new Australian works for clarinets. He has also made guest appearances on albums for Gurrumul, Sally Seltmann, ABC Classics, Paul Mac, Gondwana Voices, Ngarukuruwala and Halcyon. Jason collaborates with emerging composers, and is an in-demand music educator and examiner. He has been invited to teach two winter academies at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music in Kabul, and maintains links with staff and students there. www.jasonnoble-clarinettist.com

Lamorna Nightingale

Flute

Lamorna Nightingale is a freelance flautist, concert presenter, educator and publisher who is passionate about the future of art music in Australia. She is a core member of the new …

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Lamorna Nightingale is a freelance flautist, concert presenter, educator and publisher who is passionate about the future of art music in Australia. She is a core member of the new music group, Ensemble Offspring, and has been performing with them since 2007. Lamorna has many years of experience working in the orchestral sectors performing regularly with many of Australia’s finest ensembles. In January 2016 she performed with early music ensemble Brugge Anima Eterna at the Sydney Festival and then the Lincoln Centre in New York. Since 2017 Lamorna has curated and produced a new concert series dedicated to new music in Sydney ‘BackStage Music’. Lamorna has created several recordings of new Australian flute music with repertoire selected to suit flute players with less experience with new music. This music is now widely performed by students and professionals Australia wide and internationally, transforming for many flute players their experience of new Australian music. She has recently created an album of new Australian music for flute and electronics with an associated education kit designed to introduce school students to electroacoustic music. Lamorna has also created several pedagogical volumes of repertoire for young flute players through her publishing company, ‘Fluteworthy’.www.lamornanightingale.com

Véronique Serret

Violin

Véronique has established herself as a versatile musician whose repertoire ranges from baroque to contemporary art music, folk, rock and improvisation. She is committed to new works and regularly collaborates …

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Véronique has established herself as a versatile musician whose repertoire ranges from baroque to contemporary art music, folk, rock and improvisation. She is committed to new works and regularly collaborates with Australia’s composers. Véronique has a strong classical background and has worked extensively with Sydney Dance Company, the Australian Chamber Orchestra and the Darwin Symphony Orchestra. Since 2010 Véronique has been a member of US folk harpist Joanna Newsom’s band as both violinist and backing vocalist touring with her internationally. Véronique is also an exponent of the 6-string violin paired with electronics. Recent highlights include performances at the Commonwealth Games with indigenous band The Spirit of Churaki, a residency with Laurie Anderson at HoTa, touring nationally with Kate Miller Heidke , leading the orchestra for Neil Finn’s Sydney Opera House shows, featuring at the APRA Screen Music Awards, collaborating with Bangarra Dance Theatre, duo performances at Woodford Folk Festival with William Barton and working on Gurrumul’s Djarimirri Live. When not on stage, Véronique can be found in the recording studio, climbing a mountain or on her yoga mat.www.veroniqueserret.com

Blair Harris

Cello

Hailing from New Zealand, and originally coming to Australia to attend ANAM, Blair Harris is a highly regarded Melbourne based solo cellist and chamber musician, known particularly for his strikingly …

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Hailing from New Zealand, and originally coming to Australia to attend ANAM, Blair Harris is a highly regarded Melbourne based solo cellist and chamber musician, known particularly for his strikingly individual interpretations and innovative collaborative projects. Blair is a member of Ensemble Offspring as well as the Southern Cross Soloists and performs regularly as a duo with acclaimed pianist Caroline Almonte. Prior to this, he enjoyed many years performing with Syzygy Ensemble. Over his career, Blair has is in demand as a guest cellist with ensembles and orchestras alike. Most recently he has been guest cellist with the Australian String Quartet, Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, Streeton Trio, Seraphim Trio, Inventi Ensemble as well as the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra. As a soloist, he has performed with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria on numerous occasions. He has recently performed as part of the Canberra International Music Festival and Peninsula Summer Music Festival and alongside Ensemble Offspring at the Shanghai New Music Festival.

Benjamin Kopp

Piano

Pianist Benjamin Kopp has performed as soloist with many major Australian orchestras, including The Metropolitan Orchestra, Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Victoria and WASO. In 2007 he was …

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Pianist Benjamin Kopp has performed as soloist with many major Australian orchestras, including The Metropolitan Orchestra, Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Victoria and WASO. In 2007 he was the winner of the keyboard section of the Symphony Australia Young Performer’s Awards. In 2009, Benjamin co-founded the Streeton Trio, an all-Australian piano trio. As part of this trio, he has released four CDs (Mendelssohn Complete Piano Trios, Brahms/Ravel, Haydn/ Beethoven/Smalley, Kats-Chernin) which received favourable reviews in Limelight Magazine. In 2014 the trio performed in Wigmore Hall in London. He has toured extensively throughout Europe, China, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Scandinavia, New Zealand and Australia. While living in Europe, Benjamin performed with the Lemanic Modern Ensemble, Ensemble Contrechamps and as part of the European Chamber Music Academy. Recently, Benjamin has also been performing with Umberto Clerici, Daniel Herscovitch and Sydney Chamber Opera. Benjamin moved back to Australia in 2013 to follow his dream of building a straw-bale home with a chamber music hall in the Blue Mountains. He now lives there with his young family. www.benjaminkopp.com

Bree van Reyk

Drums / percussion

Bree van Reyk plays drums and percussion, writes and produces music, creates performances and makes unkempt musical instruments using old bits of wood and guitar strings. She has toured and …

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Bree van Reyk plays drums and percussion, writes and produces music, creates performances and makes unkempt musical instruments using old bits of wood and guitar strings. She has toured and recorded extensively throughout Australia and around the globe with Paul Kelly, Gurrumul, Justine Clarke, the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Holly Throsby, Sarah Blasko, Lior, Katie Noonan, Darren Hanlon, and many other songwriters and ensembles. Bree is a long-standing member of Ensemble Offspring and Synergy Percussion and has been commissioned by both groups. With visual artist Lauren Brincat she has created new work for AGNSW, MCA, GOMA, MOFO, Next Wave and Performance Space with a particular focus on large-scale performative works. As a composer, Bree has been commissioned by Urban Theatre Projects, Marrugeku, Shaun Parker Company, Bell Shakespeare, Sydney Dance Company, the MCA, The Letter String Quartet, Ensemble Offspring, Synergy Percussion, the Canberra Youth Orchestra, fashion designer Bianca Spender. Bree is currently studying towards a Master of Composition at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music as part of the Composing Women Program where she is studying with Liza Lim and Damien Ricketson and writing new works for world re-known flautist, Claire Chase, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and the Sydney Chamber Opera.www.breevanreyk.com

Zubin Kanga

Piano

Zubin Kanga is a pianist, composer, improviser and technologist. His work in recent years has focused on new models of interaction between a live musician and new technologies, using film, …

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Zubin Kanga is a pianist, composer, improviser and technologist. His work in recent years has focused on new models of interaction between a live musician and new technologies, using film, AI, motion capture, 3D modelling, animation and virtual reality. Zubin has performed at many international festivals including the BBC Proms, London Contemporary Music Festival, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival (UK) BIFEM, Melbourne Festival (Australia), Festival Présences (France), Klang Festival (Denmark), Darmstadt, Podium Festival (Germany), Resonator Festival (Sweden) and Borealis Festival (Norway). He has performed several concerti under the composer’s baton, including with Thomas Adès and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and with Beat Furrer and the London Sinfonietta. As a composer, his solo piano works have been performed at the Waterloo, Cambridge and Bangor Festivals, performed by Brett Dean, and broadcast on the BBC and ABC. As a performer, he has premiered over 120 new works. After graduating from the University of Sydney and the Royal Academy of Music, Zubin was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Nice and IRCAM (Paris) and a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship at Royal Holloway, University of London, where he is now Lecturer in Performance and Digital Arts.

Freya Schack-Arnott

Cello

Freya Schack-Arnott is a Danish/Australian contemporary cellist who enjoys a multi-faceted career as a performer, improviser, composer and curator; ranging from contemporary classical repertoire to experimental, electronics, popular and cross-disciplinary …

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Freya Schack-Arnott is a Danish/Australian contemporary cellist who enjoys a multi-faceted career as a performer, improviser, composer and curator; ranging from contemporary classical repertoire to experimental, electronics, popular and cross-disciplinary art forms. Freya regularly performs with Australia’s leading new music ensembles, including ELISION Ensemble and Ensemble Offspring. Her curatorial roles include co-founder and curator of the regular ‘Opus Now’ music series, an ongoing project exploring relationships between the music of today and classical string quartets; and co-curator of the Rosenberg Museum, together with violinist and improviser Jon Rose. In recent years, Schack-Arnott has performed in a number of festivals and major venues across Australia, Asia and Europe: National Concert Hall, Taipei; JazzSpot Candy, Tokyo; Copenhagen Jazz festival; Sydney Festival; Melbourne International Arts Festival; Vivid Sydney; Dark Mofo Hobart; Supersense; No New Noise; Now Now Festival; Baiame’s Ngunnhu Festival; Day for Night, Liveworks; Melbourne Fringe and SIMA Jazz Festival. freyaschackarnott.com

Musicians

Claire Edwardes

Claire Edwardes

Percussion / Artistic Director

Internationally acclaimed percussion soloist, chamber musician and artistic director of Ensemble Offspring, Claire Edwardes has been described by the press as a ‘sorceress of percussion’. Graduating as Student of the …

More
Jason Noble

Jason Noble

Clarinet

Jason Noble is one of Australia’s most versatile clarinetists, spanning the classical to highly experimental and improvisatory genres. As a core member of Ensemble Offspring for about 20 years, Jason …

More
Lamorna Nightingale

Lamorna Nightingale

Flute

Lamorna Nightingale is a freelance flautist, concert presenter, educator and publisher who is passionate about the future of art music in Australia. She is a core member of the new …

More
Véronique Serret

Véronique Serret

Violin

Véronique has established herself as a versatile musician whose repertoire ranges from baroque to contemporary art music, folk, rock and improvisation. She is committed to new works and regularly collaborates …

More
Blair Harris

Blair Harris

Cello

Hailing from New Zealand, and originally coming to Australia to attend ANAM, Blair Harris is a highly regarded Melbourne based solo cellist and chamber musician, known particularly for his strikingly …

More
Benjamin Kopp

Benjamin Kopp

Piano

Pianist Benjamin Kopp has performed as soloist with many major Australian orchestras, including The Metropolitan Orchestra, Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Victoria and WASO. In 2007 he was …

More
Bree van Reyk

Bree van Reyk

Drums / percussion

Bree van Reyk plays drums and percussion, writes and produces music, creates performances and makes unkempt musical instruments using old bits of wood and guitar strings. She has toured and …

More
Zubin Kanga

Zubin Kanga

Piano

Zubin Kanga is a pianist, composer, improviser and technologist. His work in recent years has focused on new models of interaction between a live musician and new technologies, using film, …

More
Freya Schack-Arnott

Freya Schack-Arnott

Cello

Freya Schack-Arnott is a Danish/Australian contemporary cellist who enjoys a multi-faceted career as a performer, improviser, composer and curator; ranging from contemporary classical repertoire to experimental, electronics, popular and cross-disciplinary …

More

Board

Regulatory Executive, Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)

Liz offers diverse experience in leadership, organisational strategy, policy development and governance. She has strength in cultivating networks and engaging effectively with stakeholders in dynamic, multifaceted environments to effect change. Deeply committed to inclusion and diversity, Liz actively promotes differences in thought and perspective to inform decision making. She is passionate about the arts and serving her community, also holding directorships with Diversity Council Australia and KU Children’s Services. She is a former Chair of the Board of Shopfront Arts Co-op. Liz holds tertiary qualifications in transformational leadership, management, commerce and law, and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Associate Professor, Universal Business School Sydney

Wayne is an Associate Professor at the Universal Business School Sydney and brings his wealth of experience in accounting, teaching and business in a number of national and international companies over a commercial career extending in excess of forty years. His senior finance positions include National Finance Director for Ernst & Young and Finance Director for the Bank of New Zealand in Australia. While his primary industry focus was in the financial services and insurance industry, Wayne has experience across many industries including manufacturing, services, logistics and teaching. Wayne is a qualified CPA, a Fellow of the Institute of Managers and Leaders and was a graduate member of the Australian Institutes of Company Directors. He also recently achieved Chartered Manager status at the Institute. In addition, Wayne is currently a member of the Academic senate for UBSS, a member of the Course Advisory committee and Chair of the Academic Integrity Committee.

Executive Manager, Musica Viva Australia

Trish has spent over 30 years in arts management in Australia, first as CountryWide and Export Manager at Musica Viva, then as Relationship Manager in the Major Performing Arts division at the Australia Council for the Arts. She is now enjoying her second placement at Musica Viva. She was closely involved in managing the Sydney Spring International Festival of New Music which ran for 12 years in the 1990s/early 2000s. She sat on the Board of the Australian Youth Orchestra, served as Chair at Arts on Tour and on the Board of Governors of the Federation of Asian Cultural Promotion.

At Musica Viva from 1983-2002 she was also responsible for curating and implementing the Cultural Relations Program for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) internationally. Prior to her involvement in the arts, Trish spent ten years serving abroad in DFAT’s diplomatic service. She graduated from Deakin University with majors in Public Relations and Journalism.

Chief Executive Officer, TAD

Anthony is Chief Executive Officer at TAD, Vice President of TAD Australia, and Convenor of Actuaries Institute’s Public Policy Council Committee. He was formerly Chief Executive Officer at Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia, co-lead of the National Health and Medical Research Council Centre of Research Excellence in Prostate Cancer Survivorship, and Adjunct Associate Professor at Griffith University. Prior to joining Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia, Anthony was Chief Operating Officer at the National Breast Cancer Foundation. He has held senior executive positions in the financial services industry in Australia, the US and UK, ultimately becoming Executive Director and Asia-Pacific business group leader at Mercer Wealth Solutions.

Artistic Director

Internationally acclaimed Australian percussionist and artistic director of Ensemble Offspring, Claire Edwardes is the only Australian to win the ‘APRA Art Music Award for Excellence by an Individual’ three times and is a committed advocate of gender equity in classical music and new music more broadly. She has built a career out of innovative project and program development and has a great deal of experience at many levels of the music presentation and production scene in Australia and overseas. She is one of the biggest direct commissioners of percussion solo and instrumental ensemble repertoire in Australia evidenced in the number of listings on the AMC website with her name associated. Ensemble Offspring’s Hatched Academy has grown to become one of the most competitive summer school opportunities in Australia. She has broad ranging skills in performance, ensemble leading, programming, curation, teaching, marketing, commissioning, audience development, funding applications, budgets, tour management, philanthropic development, lobbying, public speaking – all the while bringing up two girls and holding down a casual teaching position at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and Sydney Grammar School.

Chief Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art

Rachel Kent is the Chief Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) Australia. She has presented exhibitions in Australia, New Zealand, Japan, the United States and Canada, working with artists such as Grayson Perry, Yinka Shonibare MBE, Tatsuo Miyajima, David Goldblatt, Cornelia Parker and, forthcoming, Doug Aitken. Rachel’s exhibitions have been presented at the Brooklyn Museum, New York; Musée d’art contemporain de Montreal; National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC; and the Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo. Rachel has extensive public speaking experience, interviewing Yoko Ono and Grayson Perry at the Sydney Opera House; delivering talks for Frieze London. She speaks on creativity and the visual arts, environmental themes, and human rights. Most recently she delivered a TEDx talk on Art & Interconnection in difficult times. She is passionate about creativity in all its forms, including live art, performance and music. Rachel completed her postgraduate studies at The University of Melbourne; and is a graduate of the Women and Leadership Australia (WLA) advanced leadership program.

Elizabeth Hristoforidis

Regulatory Executive, Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)

Liz offers diverse experience in leadership, organisational strategy, policy development and governance. She has strength in cultivating networks and engaging effectively with stakeholders in dynamic, multifaceted environments to effect change. Deeply committed to inclusion and diversity, Liz actively promotes differences in thought and perspective to inform decision making. She is passionate about the arts and serving her community, also holding directorships with Diversity Council Australia and KU Children’s Services. She is a former Chair of the Board of Shopfront Arts Co-op. Liz holds tertiary qualifications in transformational leadership, management, commerce and law, and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Wayne Smithson

Associate Professor, Universal Business School Sydney

Wayne is an Associate Professor at the Universal Business School Sydney and brings his wealth of experience in accounting, teaching and business in a number of national and international companies over a commercial career extending in excess of forty years. His senior finance positions include National Finance Director for Ernst & Young and Finance Director for the Bank of New Zealand in Australia. While his primary industry focus was in the financial services and insurance industry, Wayne has experience across many industries including manufacturing, services, logistics and teaching. Wayne is a qualified CPA, a Fellow of the Institute of Managers and Leaders and was a graduate member of the Australian Institutes of Company Directors. He also recently achieved Chartered Manager status at the Institute. In addition, Wayne is currently a member of the Academic senate for UBSS, a member of the Course Advisory committee and Chair of the Academic Integrity Committee.

Trish Ludgate

Executive Manager, Musica Viva Australia

Trish has spent over 30 years in arts management in Australia, first as CountryWide and Export Manager at Musica Viva, then as Relationship Manager in the Major Performing Arts division at the Australia Council for the Arts. She is now enjoying her second placement at Musica Viva. She was closely involved in managing the Sydney Spring International Festival of New Music which ran for 12 years in the 1990s/early 2000s. She sat on the Board of the Australian Youth Orchestra, served as Chair at Arts on Tour and on the Board of Governors of the Federation of Asian Cultural Promotion.

At Musica Viva from 1983-2002 she was also responsible for curating and implementing the Cultural Relations Program for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) internationally. Prior to her involvement in the arts, Trish spent ten years serving abroad in DFAT’s diplomatic service. She graduated from Deakin University with majors in Public Relations and Journalism.

Dr. Anthony Lowe

Chief Executive Officer, TAD

Anthony is Chief Executive Officer at TAD, Vice President of TAD Australia, and Convenor of Actuaries Institute’s Public Policy Council Committee. He was formerly Chief Executive Officer at Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia, co-lead of the National Health and Medical Research Council Centre of Research Excellence in Prostate Cancer Survivorship, and Adjunct Associate Professor at Griffith University. Prior to joining Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia, Anthony was Chief Operating Officer at the National Breast Cancer Foundation. He has held senior executive positions in the financial services industry in Australia, the US and UK, ultimately becoming Executive Director and Asia-Pacific business group leader at Mercer Wealth Solutions.

Claire Edwardes

Artistic Director

Internationally acclaimed Australian percussionist and artistic director of Ensemble Offspring, Claire Edwardes is the only Australian to win the ‘APRA Art Music Award for Excellence by an Individual’ three times and is a committed advocate of gender equity in classical music and new music more broadly. She has built a career out of innovative project and program development and has a great deal of experience at many levels of the music presentation and production scene in Australia and overseas. She is one of the biggest direct commissioners of percussion solo and instrumental ensemble repertoire in Australia evidenced in the number of listings on the AMC website with her name associated. Ensemble Offspring’s Hatched Academy has grown to become one of the most competitive summer school opportunities in Australia. She has broad ranging skills in performance, ensemble leading, programming, curation, teaching, marketing, commissioning, audience development, funding applications, budgets, tour management, philanthropic development, lobbying, public speaking – all the while bringing up two girls and holding down a casual teaching position at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and Sydney Grammar School.

Rachel Kent

Chief Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art

Rachel Kent is the Chief Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) Australia. She has presented exhibitions in Australia, New Zealand, Japan, the United States and Canada, working with artists such as Grayson Perry, Yinka Shonibare MBE, Tatsuo Miyajima, David Goldblatt, Cornelia Parker and, forthcoming, Doug Aitken. Rachel’s exhibitions have been presented at the Brooklyn Museum, New York; Musée d’art contemporain de Montreal; National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC; and the Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo. Rachel has extensive public speaking experience, interviewing Yoko Ono and Grayson Perry at the Sydney Opera House; delivering talks for Frieze London. She speaks on creativity and the visual arts, environmental themes, and human rights. Most recently she delivered a TEDx talk on Art & Interconnection in difficult times. She is passionate about creativity in all its forms, including live art, performance and music. Rachel completed her postgraduate studies at The University of Melbourne; and is a graduate of the Women and Leadership Australia (WLA) advanced leadership program.

Elizabeth Hristoforidis

Chair

Wayne Smithson

Treasurer

Trish Ludgate

Deputy Chair

Dr. Anthony Lowe

Company Secretary

Claire Edwardes

Regular Member

Rachel Kent

Regular Member

Patron

Shane Simpson AM

Shane Simpson AM

Special Counsel, Simpson Solicitors

Shane is a chairman of Studio A (NSW’s only supported studio for artists with intellectual disability), a director of the UNSW Foundation and the Peggy Glanville Hicks Composers’ House Trust. He is also on the Council of the National Library of Australia and is the independent director on several private foundations. Shane Simpson was the founder of the Arts Law Centre of Australia and the Prelude Project (a national network of composer houses). He is Special Counsel at Simpsons Solicitors, a firm specialising in the arts, entertainment, cultural property and copyright. He was formerly chair of the Bundanon Trust; Advisory Council of the Faculty of Art + Design, UNSW; The Aboriginal Benefits Foundation; the NSW Film and Television Office and Museums and Galleries NSW and a non-executive director on numerous boards in the cultural industries including the Australian Maritime Museum the New Zealand Film Commission, the Australian National Academy of Music, the National Association for the Visual Arts, the Crafts Council of Australia, the Music Council of Australia and the Copyright Agency. He is the author of many books including ‘Visual Artists and the Law’, ‘Music Business’, and ‘Collections Law: Legal Issues for Australian Archives, Galleries, Libraries and Museums’. In 2015 he was commissioned by the Australian Government to conduct an independent review of the protection of movable cultural heritage: “Borders of Culture”. He was appointed Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for “service to the law and to the arts through leading roles in intellectual property and entertainment law, and as a contributor to a range of cultural organisations.”

Staff

Claire Edwardes

Artistic Director

Internationally acclaimed Australian percussionist and artistic director of Ensemble Offspring, Claire Edwardes is the only Australian to win the ‘APRA Art Music Award for Excellence by an Individual’ three times and is a committed advocate of gender equity in classical music and new music more broadly. She has built a career out of innovative project and program development and has a great deal of experience at many levels of the music presentation and production scene in Australia and overseas. She is one of the biggest direct commissioners of percussion solo and instrumental ensemble repertoire in Australia evidenced in the number of listings on the AMC website with her name associated. Ensemble Offspring’s Hatched Academy has grown to become one of the most competitive summer school opportunities in Australia. She has broad ranging skills in performance, ensemble leading, programming, curation, teaching, marketing, commissioning, audience development, funding applications, budgets, tour management, philanthropic development, lobbying, public speaking – all the while bringing up two girls and holding down a casual teaching position at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and Sydney Grammar School.

Ella Howard

Producer

With thirteen years experience in arts management and administration, working and liaising with the largest and busiest arts companies in the country, Ella has demonstrated a strong passion and commitment to contributing to the artistic and cultural landscape of Australia. Prior to joining Ensemble Offspring, Ella enjoyed a decade long career in orchestra management at Opera Australia (OA), having worked on diverse projects such as Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour, OA’s New Years Eve Gala, OA and The Australian Ballet’s main stage seasons at the Sydney Opera House and tours with opera superstars such as Angela Gheorghiu, Anna Netrebko and Jonas Kaufmann.  

Ella has previously held roles at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane and the Queensland Conservatorium of Music and has been successful in being selected for fellowships with the Australian Youth Orchestra, Queensland Youth Orchestra, Backbone Youth Arts 2high Festival and Oz Opera.

Ella is a trained clarinettist having completed a Bachelor of Music in Performance at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music. Ella is a passionate audience member and is particularly excited by new Australian music.

Sophie Van Dijk

Development and Administration

Sophie Van Dijk is a composer and violinist passionate about writing music to explore elements of faith, society and humanity. She aims to share these things with others with the ultimate goal of bringing joy and fostering dialogue and community. Sophie is currently completing her honours year of a Bachelor of Music (Composition) at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Notable commissions include: the Brett Whiteley Gallery, Light Qualities as part of VIVID 2019, Radford College Foundation Day Concert, and Trinity Grammar School where she was the 2019 Composer-in-Residence. She has been selected to participate in the 2017 Coro Innominata Women Composers Development Program, and the composers stream of both the 2019 Gondwana National Choral School and 2020 AYO National Music Camp.

In addition to composing, Sophie enjoys working behind the scenes to “make new music happen”. Before joining Ensemble Offspring, she was co-curator of Light Qualities, a mini-festival of new music as part of Vivid Sydney 2019.

Ensemble Offspring E E

Collaborators

ALICE CHANCE

Tempe based composer and inventor of the Audience Choir. Find her work here.

ANDREA KELLER

Composer and award-winning jazz pianist, who wrote us Love in Solitude in association with a Merlyn Myer Commission.

AUSTRALIAN ART ORCHESTRA

Music made of many influences, exploring meeting points between cultures and disciplines. See what they do here.

AUSTRALIAN MUSIC CENTRE

Australia’s national service organisation dedicated to the promotion and support of art music in Australia. Check them out here.

BERNADETTE HARVEY

Absolutely fabulous piano chamber musician and soloist from Sydney. Find her music here.

BIG HART

Australia’s leading campaigning arts organisation. Making art and building community.Read more here.

BOB SCOTT

Experienced and versatile sound designer and engineer from Sydney. You can reach him here.

CHRIS HAYLES

Photographer of motion and music. See his work here.

ENSEMBLE ADAPTER

Berlin based new music quartet and dear friends. Find them here.

HEIDRUN LÖHR

Stunning performing arts photographer and artist.

HILARY BELL

Writer of scripts, poems, children’s books and holistic wordsmith.

HOSPITAL HILL

Matt McGuigan’s home as a photographer, videographer and video artist. See his work here.

INTERNATIONAL CONTEMPORARY ENSEMBLE

Straight out of Chicago and New York. Joined us for Sydney Festival 2019. Find them here.

IRONWOOD

Historically informed Australian early music chamber ensemble. Their home is here.

JIM DENLEY

Avant-garde saxophonist and woodwind specialist based in Sydney. Find your way to his music here.

JON ROSE & HOLLIS TAYLOR

A couple of composer violinists in search of pied butcherbirds. Listen here

KATHY COGILL

One of a kind – dancer, yoga teacher, performance artist with legs of steel. Watch Kathy on YouTube.

KATE NEAL

Original composer and Hatched Academy mentor based in Melbourne.

LIVING ROOM THEATRE

Independent theatre group in Sydney led by the amazing Michelle St Anne. Check them out here.

LIZ JIGALIN

Composer,  theremin virtuoso and co-founder of Backstage Music & The Music Box Project.

LUKE CARROLL

Actor, performer, voice artist with us on Sounds Like Australia.

MARTIN DEL AMO

Dancer, choreographer, and brilliant collaborative artist. Read about his work here.

MOOGAHLIN PERFORMING ARTS

Sydney based First Peoples Theatre Company based at Carriageworks. Check them out here.

THE NOW NOW

Presenter of spontaneous music and experimental film in an annual festival and series based in Sydney. Find them here.

OLIVER MILLER

Beautiful photographer and video artist. See what he does here.

PERFORMANCE SPACE

Creating opportunities for artists at Carriageworks.

PEACHEY & MOSIG

Blue Mountains based video artists with a twist. Check them out here.

ROLAND PEELMAN

Inspirational pianist and conductor, and leader. Artistic Director of the Canberra International Music Festival. Find him here.

SAMUEL JAMES

Photographer and video artist. See his work here.

SONYA HOLOWELL

A Dharawal woman, vocalist, composer and writer working across new and experimental genres. Here.

SPEAK PERCUSSION

Australian percussionists taking innovative performance around the world. Find them here.

SYDNEY CHAMBER OPERA

Sydney’s critically acclaimed fresh and youthful answer to some of the difficult questions facing opera today. Find out more here.

SYNERGY PERCUSSION & TAIKOZ

Internationally acclaimed Sydney based percussion ensemble with 40 years experience. More here.

TURA NEW MUSIC

Perth exponent, supporter and producer of new music, with many irons in the fire

URBAN THEATRE PROJECTS

Jessica Oliviero and the team, making art theatre happen in Bankstown.

ZEPHYR QUARTET

Our partners in adventure based in Adelaide. Find them here.

THEATRE KANTANKA 

Project based physical theatre and arts company based in Sydney. Their home is here

Acclaim

2020 Quotes & Reviews

2020 Quotes & Reviews

Jan 2020

ACOUSTIC RITUALS “Ensemble Offspring’s Epic Fragments had virtuosic energy and exquisite ‘very very soft’ – Alan Holley, ClassikON

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2019 Quotes & Reviews

2019 Quotes & Reviews

Feb 2019

LONE HEMISPHERES “Designer Michelle St Anne emphasises isolation with, in turn, each soloist half-shadowed at the base of a high cone of misty light and each of the six performances …

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2018 Quotes & Reviews

2018 Quotes & Reviews

Feb 2019

“Ensemble Offspring never fails to deliver exciting programs and vibrant performances.” Angus McPherson, Limelight “I could continue listing milestones…but when it comes to championing new music, Ensemble Offspring walks the walk.” …

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2017 Quotes & Reviews

2017 Quotes & Reviews

Jan 2017

“It’s a ballsy move to open a concert of such uncompromisingly demanding (albeit beautiful) music with a work which systematically undercuts artistic pretention. But when you play these works with …

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2016 Quotes & Reviews

2016 Quotes & Reviews

Feb 2016

“…not afraid to try new things, pushing the boundaries as an ensemble – both individually as performers but also in what they present to their diverse audiences.” Kathryn Robinson, ClassikON  …

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2015 Quotes & Reviews

2015 Quotes & Reviews

Feb 2015

“The result of Broken Consorts was a fresh and stimulating blend of the old and the new.” – Peter Donnelly, The Mercury “This collaboration between Ensemble Offspring and Ironwood offered …

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2014 Quotes & Reviews

2014 Quotes & Reviews

Feb 2014

“The Ensemble Offspring orchestra excelled, especially in the quickfire transition to a demented big band uproar…The interplay..with the acoustic instrumentation and electronic score was exhilarating and, in the end, gently …

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2013 Quotes & Reviews

2013 Quotes & Reviews

Mar 2013

“While the quartet’s six-part program (in Ligeti Morphed) showed these Sydney musicians to be confident in their fusion of improvisation, notation and electronics, the outstanding feature of this event was …

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2012 Quotes & Reviews

2012 Quotes & Reviews

Sep 2012

“the best I ever heard the piece played. Really, I’m serious. It really is. It absolutely is.” – Steve Reich commenting on the performance of Music for 18 Musicians in …

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2011 Quotes & Reviews

2011 Quotes & Reviews

Apr 2012

“This hour-long promenade performance has its audience free to roam like wide-eyed shoppers. Scenes take place around and among us. The eye-catching percussionist Claire Edwardes and bass clarinet player Jason …

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2010 Quotes & Reviews

2010 Quotes & Reviews

Apr 2012

“World New Music Days’ resident musicians Ensemble Offspring took over with chamber music from Canada, Denmark, France and the Antipodes. The first work, Bruce Crossman’s Not Broken Bruised Reed, quickly …

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2009 Quotes & Reviews

2009 Quotes & Reviews

Apr 2012

“This program, conducted by Roland Peelman explored this approach with considerable intellectual and musical subtlety. The last section, in which James Cuddeford heroically reached further and further into the violin’s …

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2008 Quotes & Reviews

2008 Quotes & Reviews

Apr 2012

“Considerable intellectual and musical subtlety.” Peter McCallum, Sydney Morning Herald

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2002-2007 Quotes & Reviews

2002-2007 Quotes & Reviews

Apr 2012

Sydney Morning Herald’s annual review of classical music, Ensemble Offspring and The Song Company’s production “Cage Uncaged” was listed in the top 5 classical concerts of 2007 (the other 4 …

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Annual Reports

Ensemble Offspring Annual Report 2019

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Ensemble Offspring Annual Report 2018

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Ensemble Offspring Annual Report 2017

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Ensemble Offspring Annual Report 2016

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Ensemble Offspring Annual Report 2015

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Ensemble Offspring Annual Report 2014 - Part 1

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Ensemble Offspring Annual Report 2014 - Part 2

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Ensemble Offspring Annual Report 2013

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Ensemble Offspring Annual Report 2012

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