Naoko Keatley

Q. First Name:R. NaokoQ. Last NameR. Keatley

Q. Email (if you need to update your email here’s the place to do it!)R. [email protected]

Q. When did you join SYO? R. 1989Q. What instruments did you play in SYO?R. ViolinQ. What is your favourite memory of  SYOR. I remember rehearsing at Sydney Grammar when I was 8 and having such fun with my best friend Roslyn. Henryk Pisarek was the chief conductor then and he gave me so many concerto opportunities and I am convinced to this day that I wouldn’t be a violinist without his encouragement and guidance! One of my favourite memories was actually after I’d left the SYO, and I went back to play the Hindson Violin Concerto. We premiered it in 2001 and then performed it at the Sydney Opera House before touring around Sweden and Denmark with it. We played in some really beautiful venues and that tour will forever be one of the highlights of my musical career!Q. What role does music play in your life?R. I am now in the London Symphony Orchestra and also freelance in London, from working with different orchestras, playing chamber music to playing in West End shows! I’m married to a trumpeter so music has a huge part in our whole family. My 4 year-old loves singing and dancing so I would not be surprised if she ended up in some sort of performing career!Q. What is your favourite musical repertoire from the SYO performances? R. Death and Transfiguration by Richard Strauss! It must have been around 1993 when we played it, I was probably 13 and I was obsessed with this piece once we started rehearsing it. I have been a big Strauss fan ever since!Q. What advice would you give young musicians  today?  R. Keep your eyes and options open! There are so many different opportunities out there, in different countries, different genres of music, different types of careers… more than you can ever imagine. You never know what might be around the corner, or who might suddenly open a new door for you!

Naoko began violin at the age of four, and made her first appearance as a soloist with an orchestra at the age of eight, playing Bach’s Concerto for Two Violins with Henry Pisarek and the Sydney Youth Orchestra. In 2001, Naoko was awarded a scholarship place at the Royal Academy of Music in London, where she studied with Diana Cummings and Maurice Hasson. While at the RAM, Naoko performed in masterclasses with Maxim Vengerov and received the Vice-Principal’s Prize for Excellence. She also worked as soloist and concertmaster with Sir Colin Davis, Leif Segerstam, Stephen Hough, Sir Mark Elder, Robin Ticciati and Clio Gould. Naoko was a Tillett Trust Young Artist Platform award winner in 2008, and through this made her debut appearance at the Wigmore Hall to great acclaim. As a member of the London Symphony Orchestra, Naoko regularly performs at the Barbican and on tour around the world. She also works with the Australian World Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra and Aurora Orchestra, and on several West End shows

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