Rosemary Curtin

Q. When did you join SYO? R. My SYO years were 1981 – 1988.I learnt to read music in the back desk of the 3rd violins in Junior Strings with Rita Finn. Intermediate Strings followed with John Ockwell and my first orchestra tour to Burrawang. At the end of my  Junior Chamber Orchestra year in 1983 Joy Lee suggested I consider switching to viola which I did the following year. Evans Orchestra followed before I landed in the big SYO in 1986 and 1987 for the Tchaikovsky performances with Stuart Challender.Q. What instruments did you play in SYO?R. Violin then ViolaQ. What is your favourite memory of  SYO R. Performing Tchaikovsky’s Pathetique Symphony with Challender in 1986 at the SOH and the 5th Symphony in 1987.Q. What role does music play in your life?R. I am a violist in the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.Q. What is your favourite musical repertoire from the SYO performances? R. Tchaikovsky 5th and 6th Symphonies.Q. What advice would you give young musicians  today?  R. Make the most of the joy that performing music brings and the friendships you make along the way.

Following postgraduate studies at the Musikhochschule in Munich with Hariolf Schlichtig, Rosemary Curtin’s professional career began with regular performances with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields in London, Asia, the US and Europe.

After returning to Australia, she held the Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s Viola Fellowship in 2003 and has been working regularly with the orchestra and in 2014 joined the viola section as a permanent member. Rosemary has also pursued an active freelance career with other Australian orchestras, including the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Opera Australia Orchestra and Australian World Orchestra. And in June 2017 she represented the Sydney Symphony Orchestra performing with the New York Philharmonic in their Global Orchestra Project.

Rosemary Curtin began her music studies on the violin at the age of four with the Suzuki method. She changed to the viola when she entered the Sydney Conservatorium High School, studying with Winifred Durie. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Sydney. She has been the recipient of numerous scholarships from organisations including the Queen’s Trust, the Big Brother Movement and the Australian Youth Orchestra. She also holds a Diploma in Management Studies from the University of Cambridge and pursues an active interest in orchestral management.

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