Kendall String Project @ The Kendall School of Arts
Presented by Kendall National Violin Competition & Pentimento

A community string festival comprising workshops, masterclasses and playing sessions. Players of all levels are welcome. Workshops explore technical topics and show ways to improve playing quickly and easily. Participants can learn how to teach challenging skills or accomplish difficult remedial work. Students will find effective and encouraging ways to progress their playing quickly. String educators and masterclass leaders will work with individual teachers and students. A further of update of the schedule may be provided once registrations are completed. Registration by February 12 and by email ( Kendall String Project is sponsored by Kendall Op Shop attendance is free.

Kendall String Project welcomes four young musicians from the National Orchestra of Samoa.

Thursday, February 16

5 - 6.30 pm Cello Workshop & Masterclass on Cello Basics. Left and right hand, concepts and exercises. (James Larsen)

Friday, February 17

5 -6.30 pm Violin/ Viola Workshop & Masterclass on technique topics: Sound Production, bowing technique. Concepts, exercises, teaching techniques. (Fintan Murphy)

Saturday, February 18

10-12.30 Ensemble Workshop. Participants combine to a string orchestra, consolidate and have fun. Depending on size of ensemble we may split into sections. (Goetz Richter, Geist Quartet,  Musicians of the National Orchestra of Samoa)

2- 3.30 Violin/Viola & Cello Masterclasses (repertoire and technique topics) (Fintan Murphy, James Larsen, Goetz Richter)

4- 5.30 Teacher Seminar (Development, solving difficult challenges) (Fintan Murphy)

Sunday, February 19

10- 12 Ensemble Workshop. (including Geist Quartet, Musicians from the National Orchestra of Samoa)

2 pm Concert. Featuring Geist Quartet, Musicians from the National Orchestra of Samoa, Workshop participants

All welcome

Costs: Amazingly, the workshops are free, thanks to the generous support from the Kendall OpShop…so, all welcome…. however, please register by sending an email to by February 12

James Larsen, cello

Originally from rural Victoria, James’s career has seen him perform, conduct, and teach at festivals across Australia as well as overseas. James has performed at the festivals of Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Canberra, Castlemaine, Perth, Bangalow, as well as the Adelaide Cello Festival and the Fondazione Merz in Italy.
James completed studies with David Pereira at the Australian National University School of Music where he was awarded the Ruth Pfanner undergraduate scholarship, the Wesley Music Centre Scholarship, the Margot Lewin Prize for most outstanding cellist, Canberra Symphony Orchestra string scholarship, the soloists prize, and the chamber music prize. Following studies with Howard Penny (cello) and Bill Hennessey (chamber music) at the Australian National Academy of Music in Melbourne, James enrolled in the class of Julian Smiles at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.
James is well regarded as a teacher, being consistently in demand in Sydney, Melbourne, and Canberra from both local and international students. Currently the principal teacher of cello and chamber music at the MLC school in Sydney (also serving as assistant conductor), James is dedicated to the development and implementation of pedagogical methods that help increase the benefit, understanding, and enjoyment of music.
James has given masterclasses throughout Australia on cello, chamber music, classical improvisation, and the harmonic structure of solo Bach. As a conductor he has been invited for the last two years to work with the Shoalhaven Youth Orchestra on their yearly music camp. James is also the conductor of the Arden Senior String Ensemble in Sydney.

Fintan Murphy, violin

One of Australia’s leading string educators, Fintan Murphy was born in Melbourne and completed further study in Cologne with Helfried Fister, Christoph Poppen and the Amadeus quartet. He completed his Masters degree with Robert Gerle in Washington, D.C. Fintan was a member of the Melbourne Symphony for many years and now performs in concerto, recital and chamber music, collaborating with artists such as Goetz Richter, Stan Dodds, Elizabeth Sellars, Hartmut Lindemann, David Bollard, Ben Martin, David Selig, Janis Laurs, Christian Wojtowicz, Kees Boersma.
Fintan directs the Melbourne String Ensemble, a youth orchestra specializing in small ensemble repertoire and chamber music for strings. He has worked as a guest conductor for many youth orchestras including: the Conservatorio de Musica de Manresa, the Escola Superior de Música de Lisboa and Junges Kammerorchester Stuttgart.
Fintan is a leader in the development of teacher training and instrument specific pedagogy both inside and outside the university system. Since 1994 he has developed and taught string pedagogy courses to undergraduate and graduate students at the University of Melbourne, Monash University and currently at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. He has supervised numerous post-graduate doctoral and masters students and presented over 350 seminars, summer schools workshops and conference presentations throughout Australia, the Asia-Pacific, Europe and the North America.

Goetz Richter, violin

Goetz Richter is an Associate Professor at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music where he co-ordinates studies in violin performance. He has held positions as Associate Concertmaster with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Associate Principal Violin with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and leader of the Queensland Theatre Orchestra. Goetz has appeared as a violin soloist, recitalist and chamber musician in Australia, Asia and Europe and has been a leader and guest leader of a number of Australian Orchestras. He has also collaborated with leading Australian and international artists, has appeared for Musica Viva and recorded for the ABC.
Goetz was a board director of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra from 2007 until 2016. He is currently artistic director of the Kendall National Violin Competition, artistic director of the Riverina Summer School for Strings and president of the Sydney Schubert Society. He also travels internationally to present masterclasses and lectures on musical performance and instrumental teaching, most recently in New Zealand, Singapore, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Fuzhou and Wuhan where he was appointed visiting professor at the Conservatorium of Music.
Born in Hamburg Goetz Richter studied violin performance in Hamburg, Munich and Berne before settling in Australia in 1985. From 1990, and whilst a member of the Sydney Symphony, Richter also studied philosophy, psychology and philosophy of science at the University of Sydney completing a PhD in philosophy in 2007. He has published in philosophy, the philosophy of Plato and Nietzsche, the philosophy of music, musical performance, music education and violin pedagogy. He is a founding editor of the Open Access journal String Praxis and convener of the Australian Violin Pedagogy Conference.

Geist String Quartet

Formed in 2015, The Geist Quartet is comprised of violinists Sonia Wilson and Meg Cohen, violist Hayasa Tanaka, and cellist James Larsen. All members of the quartet are postgraduate students of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.
In 2016 the Geist Quartet was awarded the prestigious Westheimer String Quartet Fellowship as well as being selected to participate in the Sydney Conservatorium of Music’s Estivo Festival in Italy followed by a performance with Umberto Clerici at the Fondazione Merz in Turin. They also participated in the Australian Youth Orchestra’s Chamber Players program, and performed in a standalone concert at the Melbourne MPavillion.  During 2015 the quartet attended the Advanced Masterclasses at the Australian Festival of Chamber Music Winterschool and performed with the Southern Cross Soloists as the Fellowship Quartet at the Bangalow Music Festival, also collaborating with artists such as Tania Frazer, William Barton, Karin Schaupp, Alexandra Flood and Alex Raineri.
 The ensemble has presented concerts in Sydney and across regional New South Wales. A tour throughout central western NSW allowed the quartet to perform in a number of towns and cities as well as work with children in regional schools. The Geist Quartet are active participants in quartet development programs throughout Australia including the AYO Chamber Players and the Australian Festival of Chamber Music Winter School. It is through programs such as these that the quartet has been fortunate enough to work with artists and teachers such as Prof. Goetz Richter, Umberto Clerici, Andrew Haveron, Jack Liebeck, Hartmut Rohde, David Harding, Ike See, Julian Smiles, Monica Curro, and the London Haydn Quartet.
This year will see the Geist Quartet perform at the Musica Viva Festival as part of the Australian Youth Orchestra’s Chamber Players program, as well as a performance in collaboration with the Sydney Male Choir at the Sydney Town Hall.

Musicians from the National Orchestra of Samoa
Tipaso Akusitino, Vaaiga Faatutala, Enoch Fruean, Atonio Savelio Pele

The National Orchestra of Samoa is a musical community that provides a place for local people to train and finesse their skills on traditional symphonic orchestral instruments. It is a place where traditional Samoan music can be fostered and preserved, access to musical genres can be broadened and entertainment can be provided to members of the public through performance. We aim to develop the music industry in Samoa and to develop well trained musicians while providing a second chance in life to those who may need it. The goals within the Orchestra are to promote well-being and equality, to foster self-confidence, respect and pride in every member and to provide opportunities to those in the community who would benefit socially from music education such as youths and others who may be disadvantaged.

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