Soloists & Conductors

Conductors and Soloists for our 2018 Concert Series

Michael Joel – Conductor and Musical Director of SMCO

New Zealand-born conductor, Michael Joel studied at Otago University where he completed an Honours degree in conducting. After graduating he studied with conductors Heinz Wallberg, Miguel Harth-Bedoya, Jac van Steen, and at the Dartington International Summer School.

Equally at home in the orchestral, choral and operatic repertoire, Michael has conducted extensively throughout New Zealand and, since relocating to London in early 2014, at The Royal Opera House, assisting Alexander Joel, Dan Ettinger, Placido Domingo, Oleg Caetani and Marc Minkowski.

He has conducted many of the established orchestras and companies in New Zealand – Christchurch Symphony Orchestra, the Southern Sinfonia, St Matthew’s Chamber Orchestra, Opera Otago, the City of Dunedin Choir, NZSO National Youth Orchestra and, prior to relocating to London, principals and members of the NZSO and NZ String Quartet in a critically acclaimed performance of Mahler’s 4th Symphony.

Michael was Music and Development Officer, Chorus Master and Assistant Conductor at Canterbury Opera. During his tenure he conducted Lakmé , Rusalka, Comte Ory, La traviata and the world premiere of Jonathan Besser’s “work in progress”, commissioned by Canterbury Opera. In August 2006 he conducted a highly successful production of Die Fledermaus for Opera Hawke’s Bay.

Michael is currently Music Director of St Matthews Chamber Orchestra and has recently freelanced with the music staff at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as duty conductor on productions of Carmen, Tosca, La Bohème and La Traviata. He also assisted with the music preparation and children’s chorus for Carmen and La Bohème.

Michael is also an accomplished violist and teacher, working in London.

David Kay – Conductor

Born in Palmerston North and now residing in Auckland, David Kay is an up-and-coming New Zealand conductor in the orchestral scene. He has been an Acting Sub-Principal Horn of the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra since 2008 and a leading teacher of Horn at many North Shore schools. He studied performance French Horn at the University of Auckland where he gained his Bachelor of Music Honours in 2006 before accepting a scholarship to attend the Guildhall School of Music and Drama for a Post-Graduate Diploma of Orchestral Training in 2007 studying with Hugh Seenan, Richard Bissill and Jonathan Lipton.

David has studied conducting at the University of Auckland, The Guildhall School of Music and Drama under Sian Edwards, and is has been an active participant in the Symphony Services International Conducting Program during the last 5 years. In recent years, he has studied under Christopher Seeman with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Marko Letonja and Christopher Seeman with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, and Johannes Fritzsch with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra.

David made his conducting debut with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra in 2009 and since then has featured regularly as a guest conductor of various educational and outreach programs. In 2011 he collaborated with Graham Abbott in his popular series Unwrap the Music, in 2012 made his debut with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra and also featured on the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra’s ‘Soundtrack to Auckland’. In 2010 he was a guest conductor for the contemporary music ensemble 175 East, and in 2011 made his debut with the St Matthews Chamber Orchestra in Auckland.

David is one of the co-founders of North Shore Youth Music, a community music program combining three orchestras and three choirs on the North Shore of Auckland. He is the Musical Director of the North Shore Junior Orchestra, a post he has held since 2002, the North Shore Youth Orchestra, since 2009, and his experience with youth ensembles has seen him leading workshops for overseas music ensembles visiting New Zealand, the KBB Music Festival, the University of Auckland Academy Orchestra and numerous school orchestras and ensembles.

Ashley Brown – Cello

In his student years, Ashley won the Young Musicians Competition, National Concerto Competition and Young Achievers Award plus prizes at the Adam International Cello Competition, Gisborne International Music Competition and the ROSL Music Competition in London. His academic history includes the Master of Music (Canterbury), Artist Diploma (Yale) and Doctor of Musical Arts (Auckland), plus cello lecturer positions at the universities of Waikato, Canterbury and Auckland. He was a member of the Turnovsky Trio and Principal Cellist of the Auckland Philharmonia.

These days, Ashley keeps a busy schedule of solo and ensemble recitals, concertos and recording and enjoys close collaborative relationships with musicians across the spectrum of genres. He plays the 1762 William Forster “Liberte” cello.

Jose Aparicio – Conductor

José began studying music with his father at the age 5, continuing his flute studies at Alicante’s Music Conservatoire where he graduated in 1995 having won the graduation competition and the Sociedad de Conciertos de Alicante Prize. He then played as a soloist with orchestras for a year and in 1996 became principal flute of the Orquesta Sinfónica de Alicante and Orquesta de Camara Ciudad de Elche, touring with them both extensively.

In 1998 he moved to London to study post graduate flute, conducting and singing at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama where he graduated in 2004, and won second prize in the prestigious Gold Medal competition. During his years of study at the Guildhall José worked with conductors such as Sir Colin Davis, M. Rostropovich, Charles Dutoit, V. Ashkenazy, Leonard Slatkin, Bernard Haitink, Michael Tilson Thomas, and many more. José then performed regularly in the UK, Austria, the Netherlands, Spain and France.

In 2009, following the birth of his daughter, José emigrated to New Zealand. He is currently Artistic Director of the Napier Civic Choir. He also regularly conducts the Hawke’s Bay Orchestra and has directed and conducted the last two productions of Festival Opera in Napier. His understanding and knowledge of repertoire is extensive, his perspective one of both performer and director, feeling equally at home with Opera, Choral and Symphonic repertoire.

José’s teaching portfolio currently includes singing and flute students at a wide range of levels, and conducting choirs at Iona College and Woodford House in Havelock North. In addition, Jose tutors young singers taking part in Project Prima Volta.

This is his third appearance with SMCO. 

Justus Rozemond, Conductor

Justus studied conducting from Ken Young, Christopher Warren-Green, Karen Grylls, Kirill Karabits, Leonid Korchmar, Oleg Proskunya and Pietari Inkinen, as well as from all conductors he has even been conducted by, and all players he has ever conducted.

As a conductor, he has performed with the AHEM! Ensemble, NIMBY opera, Kapiti Concert Orchestra, NZ School of Music orchestra and saxophone ensemble, Taranaki Symphony Orchestra, St Matthews Chamber Orchestra and the Wellington Youth Choir, as well as contemporary music groups GateSeven, Contemporary Music Ensemble Korea and the SMP ensemble. Since 2012 he is the Music Director of the Bay of Plenty Symphonia, and last year he founded the Youth Philharmonic Tauranga.

Justus returns to SMCO after a concert in 2013, where he conducted a performance of Brahms’s second symphony and the Séjourné marimba concerto.

Gillian Ansell – Viola

Gillian Ansell was born in Auckland, New Zealand and began violin and piano lessons at an early age. At 16 years she made her concerto debut with the Auckland Symphonia (now the Auckland Philharmonia).

An Associated Board Scholarship to study violin, viola and piano took Gillian Ansell to the Royal College of Music in London where she won several prizes. She then took up a German Academic Exchange (DAAD) scholarship for further study in Germany at the Musikhochschule Cologne with Igor Ozim and the Amadeus Quartet.

After working professionally in London for three years she returned to New Zealand to become a founding member of the New Zealand String Quartet. She was second violinist for nearly two years before taking up the position of violist of the group. With the NZSQ, she travels regularly to perform in festivals and concert series in the US, Canada, Europe and recently China and Singapore, as well as many concert annually in New Zealand.

In 2001 she became Artistic Director, with fellow quartet member Helene Pohl, of the Adam New Zealand Festival of Chamber Music. In 2008 Gillian was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for her services to music.

Gillian is an Associate Professor at Victoria University of Wellington’s School of Music, (now the New Zealand School of Music), a role which includes performing and teaching viola and chamber music.

Gillian is delighted to return for her 5th concerto appearance with SMCO. In her spare time she enjoys cooking, gardening, tramping and dinner parties.

Monique Lapins – Violin

Monique Lapins began her violin studies at the age of 6 with the Suzuki method and continued her studies at the Australian National Academy of Music under William Hennessy, and at the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music under Professor Qian Zhou.

As a chamber musician, she has twice been a finalist in the Asia Pacific Chamber Music Competition and has participated in chamber music programmes and festivals in France, the Czech Republic, Holland, Japan, Hong Kong and Australia and at the prestigious Open Chamber Music Seminars in Prussia Cove in the UK.

A former Emerging Artist with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Monique has toured extensively in collaboration with the Australian Chamber Orchestra Collective, the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra and the Singapore Symphony Orchestra. She has also performed under the baton of Seiji Ozawa in Japan and under Philippe Herreweghe in France.

Monique joined the New Zealand String Quartet in May 2016 and plays a 1784 Lorenzo Storioni violin, kindly loaned by Mr David Duncan Craig, as trustee of the Lily Duncan Trust. 

Andrew Beer – Violin

Violinist Andrew Beer has been described as a “virtuoso soloist” by the San Francisco Classical Voice, as possessing a “glorious string tone” by Strad Magazine, as a performer displaying “accuracy and subtle charisma” by the Boston Globe, and as a “musical gift” by the New York Times. He has performed extensively throughout North America, Europe and Asia, and his performances have been broadcast on NHK Japan, Vietnamese television, CBC Radio-Canada, Minnesota Public Radio, Vermont Public Radio and WQXR New York.

As a soloist, he has performed with leading orchestras in Vancouver, Montreal, New York, Boston and Catania (Sicily), with conductors including Joseph Silverstein, Gil Rose, Victor Feldbrill and Daisuke Soga. As a chamber musician, he has performed at the Banff, Orford, Domaine Forget, Tanglewood, Aspen, Music@Menlo and Prussia Cove festivals, and has appeared in concert with Midori and members of the Emerson String Quartet.

Contemporary music has played a large role in Mr. Beer’s musical life, and he has worked closely with some of the leading composers of our time on their solo and chamber works , including Pierre Boulez, Mario Davidovsky, György Kurtág and Steve Reich.

Mr. Beer was the grand prize winner of concerto competitions at the New England Conservatory of Music and Stony Brook University, and was a prize-winning laureate at the Monte Carlo “Violin Masters” international competition in Monaco, and the “Dr. Luis Sigall” competition in Chile. Humanitarian and outreach concerts have also played an important role in Mr. Beer’s musical output, and through such endeavours he was awarded a U.S. Congressional Commendation in 2006.

Also an accomplished composer and arranger, Mr. Beer has completed numerous works for solo, duo, chamber and orchestral ensemble. He has had four pieces published on the Lighthouse label: Introduction and March (2013, for symphony orchestra), Chanson Cramoisie (2012, for violin and piano) and arrangements of two complete Dvorak String Quartets for symphony orchestra (Op. 51 in E-flat major, 2011, and Op. 105 in A-flat major, 2013).

Born in Vancouver in 1982, Mr. Beer commenced his studies on violin at the age of five, and his principal teachers were Lawrie Hill, Gwen Thompson, Gerald Stanick, Ani Kavafian and Donald Weilerstein. He holds a BA magna cum laude from Stony Brook University, as well as an MM and GD from the New England Conservatory of Music. He served as a performing and teaching fellow at Carnegie Hall and the Juilliard School from 2007-2008, and from 2008 – 2013 he performed as he performed as an assistant principal of 2nd violins in the Montreal Symphony Orchestra, and in 2014 was appointed the concertmaster of the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra.

Andrew performs on a J.B. Vuillaume violin from 1845, and a J.J. Martin bow from 1880.

David Guerin – Piano

David Guerin, studied at Victoria University, and at the University of Auckland (where he graduated with an M.Mus degree) with Janetta McStay. Later study in Cologne focused on contemporary music and on Lieder accompaniment as well as chamber music with members of the Amadeus Quartet.

He performs as a soloist, chamber music player and accompanist, and has appeared as concerto soloist with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, and toured New Zealand giving concerts for Chamber Music New Zealand. A strong commitment to the performance of music by New Zealanders has been a feature of his career, and several composers have written pieces especially for him.

David has adjudicated at all the major New Zealand competitions, including the Kerikeri Piano Competition, the Rotorua Concerto Competition, PACANZ Young Performer of the Year Award, and various events for regional Registered Music Teacher groups. He now lives in Auckland and teaches piano and chamber music at the School of Music of the University of Auckland as well as maintaining a private teaching practice.

Timothy Carpenter – Conductor

Timothy holds a Bachelor of Music majoring in Performance Cello from the University of Waikato, a Licentiate of the Royal Schools of Music in Cello with Distinction, an Honours degree majoring in performance organ and conducting from the University of Auckland and has just completed his Masters in conducting at the University of Auckland under the supervision of Prof Uwe Grodd, Dr Karen Grylls and Dr Gregory Camp.

He has been a member of the New Zealand National Youth Orchestra, the New Zealand Youth Choir, Voices New Zealand, Auckland Chamber Choir and Voices of Age of Discovery. Timothy is emerging as one of New Zealand’s most active and promising young conductors, having worked with several amateur and professional ensembles in New Zealand and overseas. He has participated in conducting master classes in the United States, Europe, the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand, conducting orchestras including the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Western Australia Symphony, Tasmanian Symphony, Auckland Philharmonic, and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.

Currently, Timothy is Director of Choral Music at St Paul’s Collegiate Hamilton, Sub-Organist at Hamilton Cathedral of St Peter, Musical Director of Hamilton Civic Choir, Associate Conductor of OPUS Chamber Orchestra, and is a guest conductor with St Matthews Chamber Orchestra, the  Devonport Chamber Orchestra and Bach Musica NZ.

Hamilton Civic Choir – Choir

Since beginning in 1946, the Hamilton Civic Choir has enjoyed a reputation as one of New Zealand’s finest Choirs.
Being a fully auditioned choir, we are able to perform works outside the scope of many community-based choirs. In addition to the large choral works of the great composers, usually performed with organ or orchestral accompaniment and the best national and international soloists, the choir’s repertoire includes chamber music and other shorter and more modern works.

Currently we comprise about 40 singers, some of whom travel from other Waikato towns to sing with us. The choir has a wide and varied repertoire, presenting masterpieces of western musical culture under the direction of both local and international conductors.
Our high standing in the music scene in this country is shown by the fact that we have been chosen several times to sing major choral works with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.

Tianyi Lu – Conductor

Tianyi is the Assistant Conductor of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, a Dudamel Fellow with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, Principal Conductor of the St. Woolos Players, and regularly guest conducts orchestras around the United Kingdom and New Zealand. Recent engagements have included concerts with the Dallas Opera Orchestra, RWCMD Symphony Orchestra, Bristol Metropolitan Orchestra as their formal Music Director, Manukau Symphony Orchestra and Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra Summer School and will be making her debut with the Hallé orchestra later this year.

In masterclass or assistant roles, Tianyi has worked with conductors and ensembles including Bernard Haitink and the Lucerne Festival Strings, Sir Mark Elder and the Hallé Orchestra, Thomas Søndergård and Xian Zhang with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Carlo Rizzi with the Gulbenkian Orchestra, Carlo Montanaro and Nicole Paiement with the Dallas Opera Orchestra, Alice Farnham and Welsh National Youth Opera, Alexander Polynichko with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Pietari Inkinen with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Eckehard Stier with the Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra, Marko Letonja with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Sian Edwards with the Dartington Festival Orchestra, Kenneth Kiesler with the Berlin Sinfonietta and Christopher Seaman as part of the Symphony Services International Conducting Training Programme.

In 2016 Tianyi was selected out of 320 applicants to attend the Lucerne Festival Masterclass with Bernard Haitink, and was chosen out of a field of 150 to be an active participant at the Linda and Mitch Hart Institute for Women Conductors with the Dallas Opera. In 2014 she was voted a finalist at the twelfth ‘Interaktion Dirigentenwerkstatt des Kritischen Orchesters’ by players of the Berlin Philharmonic and professional orchestras in Germany.

Tianyi began conducting studies at the University of Auckland with Uwe Grodd and Karen Grylls where she completed her Bachelor of Music with First Class Honours, before studying with John Hopkins at the University of Melbourne. Tianyi was awarded Distinction for her MMus in Orchestral Conducting at the RWCMD studying with David Jones in 2015.

Bede Hanley – Oboe

Recognized for his “gorgeous tone and buoyant phrasing,” oboist Bede Hanley joined the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra as Section Principal Oboe in 2013.  Previously, Mr. Hanley was Principal Oboe of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra in Canada and a member of Spain’s Orquesta Sinfonica de Galicia.

Born in Saskatchewan, Canada, Mr. Hanley received a Bachelor of Music degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music, where he studied with the esteemed John Mack.

He has performed with many symphony orchestras and opera companies across New Zealand, Canada, the United States, Europe and South America.  Active in chamber music around the world, Mr. Hanley performs in New Zealand with his APO colleagues in the APOboes! and the Koru and Trapeze Quintets.  Mr. Hanley has been a recitalist in Canada, the US, Spain, Australia and New Zealand, and a featured soloist with the Auckland Philharmonia, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Auckland Chamber Orchestra, the St. Matthew’s Chamber Orchestra, the Manukau Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland’s Bach/Handel Society and Canada’s Prairie Virtuosi.

Inspired by his teachers and mentors, Bede has taught the oboe in North and South America, Europe, and Australasia. He has been on faculty at the Universities of Western Ontario and Manitoba, both in Canada, and is an active teacher and music coach in the Auckland community.