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In person: The Concourse Box Office, Chatswood
By phone: Concourse Box Office 8075 8111

6 individual finalists in the 2024 NSW Secondary Schools Concerto Competition will perform their selected concerto with orchestra on Sunday 30 June, competing for prizes and opportunities in this prestigious annual event. 2024 is the 40th year the Ku-ring-gai Philharmonic Orchestra (KPO) has run the NSW Secondary Schools Concerto Competition.

The competition is open to secondary school pupils in years 7–12 at schools throughout NSW and the ACT, attracting close to 100 entrants, eager to compete for a coveted position in the Finals Concert and for the prize money of up to $10,000.

Two internationally recognised musicians will adjudicate performances by finalists performing concerti with Ku-ring-gai Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Artistic Director, Paul Terracini.

Regarded as a stepping stone to national and international success, the competition has been held annually since 1984 and provides an invaluable performance opportunity for young musicians to showcase their talents as concerti soloists accompanied by orchestra. The list of previous winners reflects the names of many well-known personalities in the music world, such as Amy Dickson, Natalie Chee, Grace Clifford, Simon Tedeschi and Anna da Silva Chen.

Hear these talented young musicians give dynamic concerto performances and assert a vibrant future ahead for live classical music performance.


Geraldine Doogue

Born and raised in Perth, Geraldine Doogue AO is a renowned Australian journalist and broadcaster much respected for her work reporting on religious and social affairs and on Australia’s place in the world.

Geraldine has carved out an enviable reputation across print, television and radio, starting on “The West Australian” in Perth, before moving to The Australian, ABC’s Nationwide, 2UE, Channel 10 news, hosting ABC TV’s Compass program and continuing in various roles on ABC RN and via podcasting.

Geraldine takes a keen interest in ongoing developments in various areas of modern life, like the relationship between Islam and the Western world, co-producing an ABC documentary series Tomorrow's Islam in 2003 with Peter Kirkwood. In 2005 the pair co-authored a book Tomorrow's Islam: Uniting Age-old Beliefs and a Modern World. She has contributed to various books and publications on Catholic Church dilemmas and in 2014 was editor of The Climb: Conversations with Australian Women in Power.

In 2000, she was awarded a Churchill Fellowship for social and cultural reporting. In 2003 she was honoured with the title of Officer in the Order of Australia (AO) for distinguished service to the community and media related to ethics, values, religion and social change. In 2018, she was delighted to be admitted to the Australian Media Hall of Fame and has been awarded several honorary doctorates by Australian universities.


Paul Terracini

Dr Paul Terracini was born in Sydney and has enjoyed a career in Australia and internationally as an instrumentalist, composer, arranger, and conductor. He has held permanent positions as Principal Trumpet in the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra; Lecturer in Trumpet, Brass Ensemble and Big Band at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music; and Solo Trumpet in the Danish Chamber Players, Denmark.

As an instrumentalist, he performed as soloist in Australia, Europe, USA, and Asia. Within Australia, his solo performances included concertos with the Melbourne, Queensland, West Australian, and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras.

Paul Terracini has appeared as an opera conductor at the German Rossini Festival in Bad Wilbad, for the Danish Bel Canto Society in Copenhagen, and the Storstroms Symphony Orchestra, also in Denmark. Since assuming the role of artistic director of the Penrith Symphony Orchestra in 2010, he has, apart from programming and conducting the symphonic repertoire, pioneered the performance of chamber opera in western Sydney. For many years he has been invited as a guest conductor/composer to music schools and universities in Europe, USA, China, and Australia. He appears regularly as conductor for the Conservatorium High School, in Sydney. As a choral conductor, he has recorded for ABC Classics with Ars Nova Copenhagen, and the Sydney based choir, Cantillation.

As a composer and arranger, his music has been heard throughout the world in a variety of genres, performed by, amongst others, the Prague Symphony Orchestra, the Australian Chamber Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Brass, the Danish Chamber Players, the Australian Brass Quintet, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra Brass, and at festivals and conferences on every continent. His music for the two part ABC television series, Hymns of the Forefathers, in which he developed many of the traditional English hymns into symphonic poems, received international acclaim and was released on CD and DVD by ABC Classics. His title music for the television series, Classical Destinations, which was produced for three seasons, was featured on the ‘Number 1 Classical Album of the Year,’ released by Decca.

His CD, Paul Terracini: Music for Brass, was released on the Tall Poppies label in May 2015. On this recording, he conducted his own music with Sydney Brass, featuring members of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.

Paul Terracini also holds a PhD from the University of Sydney, having earlier completed a Bachelor of Theology and a Bachelor of Arts (Honours). His book, John Stoward Moyes and the Social Gospel, was published in 2015.


Simon Tedeschi

Simon Tedeschi is one of Australia’s most renowned classical pianists, recipient of prizes such as Symphony Australia’s Young Performer of the Year Award, the Legacy Award from the Creativity Foundation (USA), first prize in the Keyboard division of the Royal Overseas League Competition (UK), and a Centenary of Federation Medal. He has performed in major concert halls and for festivals throughout Europe, North America, Asia, and Australia, and for world leaders including former US President George W. Bush and the Dalai Lama.

As a writer, he has written for a number of publications, including Seizure Magazine, Art Edit Magazine, SBS Feast Magazine, the Sydney Morning Herald and many others. In 2023, Simon’s first book, Fugitive, was released by Upswell and subsequently shortlisted for both the Judith Wright Calanthe Award for Poetry and the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards. In May of 2022, Tedeschi was awarded the Calibre Prize (Australian Book Review) for his essay ‘This woman my grandmother’.

Acclaimed by respected critics and peers as “True greatness” (Sydney Morning Herald), Simon Tedeschi performed his first Mozart piano concerto in the Sydney Opera House at age nine. Based in the USA for several years courtesy of the American Australian Association and the Australian Elizabethan Theatre Trust, in 2009 Tedeschi performed in Carnegie Hall, won the ‘New York Young Jewish Pianist Award’ and performed as soloist with the Colorado, Fort Worth and Illinois Symphony Orchestras (USA).

Tedeschi performs as soloist with all the major Australian orchestras as well as Christchurch Symphony Orchestra (New Zealand), and with classical chamber and jazz collaborators in leading festivals, venues and concert series including the Abu Dhabi International Arts Festival, Shanghai Arts Festival, Sydney, Brisbane and Fremantle Festivals, for Sydney Opera House’ Utzon Music Series, Musica Viva, UKARIA Cultural Centre (Adelaide) and Perth Theatre Trust.

A seasoned collaborator and chamber musician, Tedeschi also performs with SSO Concertmaster Andrew Haveron, flautist Sally Walker and with jazz pianist Kevin Hunt.

Tedeschi also holds a Masters in Arts (Writing and Literature) degree from Deakin University.


Madeleine Easton

The Australian violinist Madeleine Easton is an established star on the international stage. She has appeared as both soloist, concertmaster and director of the worlds most respected ensembles.

After winning the string prize for the most outstanding performer at the Royal College of Music, London, she has forged a unique career as both a modern and baroque violinist. As concertmaster, she has performed with the Orquesta Sinfonica de Madrid, the Gulbenkian Foundation Orchestra of Lisbon, The English Baroque Soloists, the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, The Gabrieli Consort, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, The Australian World Orchestra and the Northern Ballet Orchestra of England. She held the position of concertmaster of The Hanover Band from 2006-2017. Madeleine formed a special relationship with the Royal Academy of Music, London where she directed the Bach Cantata Series from 2009- 2019 and is regularly invited to give masterclasses.  

In 2019 she returned to Australia to found Bach Akademie Australia, now a mainstay on the Australian music scene, regularly achieving 5 star reviews.Madeleine plays on a 1682 Giovanni Grancino violin.



Leanne Jin

Leanne Jin recently completed her Master of Music degree at the Yale School of Music studying with Boris Berman. She is recipient of the 2024 Elizabeth Parisot Prize, given to an outstanding pianist in the School of Music and the winner of the Woolsey Hall Concerto Competition. As a result, Leanne will perform Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto no.3 with the Yale Philharmonia next season. 

Leanne made her concerto debut with the Ku-ring-gai Philharmonic Orchestra in the 2017 KPO Concerto Competition and was awarded the Barbara Robinson award (Senior Section). Other concerto highlights include performances with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Sydney Conservatorium Orchestra and Penrith Symphony Orchestra. Leanne has also been invited to perform in the Encuentro Españoles Spanish Music Festival, Canberra International Music Festival, Bowral Autumn Music Festival, Phoenix Central Park and in Carnegie Hall. Leanne was selected as one of four Australian participants to perform in the 2023 Sydney International Piano Competition.

Leanne completed her Bachelor of Music Performance degree with First Class Honours at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music in 2021 studying with Natalia Ricci, who continues to be her mentor.