Orchestra appoints new conductor

Janice Wilding (Supplied) 280660_01

Ash Bolt

Orchestra Geelong has appointed well-known music teacher Janice Wilding as its new conductor and musical director.

Well-known within Geelong’s music community as a teacher at both Christian College and St Ignatius College, Wilding is also a talented clarinettist that had previously played in the orchestra.

She was first inspired by her teacher Richard Walthew and then had the honour of being taught by the Royal Philharmonic’s principal clarinettist Jack Brymer.

As a conductor Janice has studied with Professor Steven Davis, Dr Carolyn Watson and Dr Nicholas Williams and has honed her skills with her students and St Ignatius’ Junior Band.

Orchestra Geelong chairman Dean Conkwright said he was “delighted” with Wilding’s appointment.

“Janice brings with her passion and enthusiasm, a new musical direction with a contemporary-classical blend and we know from her work in the music world here in Geelong, that she brings with her a strong sense of community which is of course, a key focus for our orchestra,” he said.

In her first responsibility as musical director, Wilding has prepared the Orchestra Geelong Concert Series repertoire for 2022.

She said it was an honour to take over the role from Mark Shiell.

“The Geelong community’s thriving music scene is emerging revitalised and energised after two years of lockdowns and restrictions,” she said.

“I am excited to lead Orchestra Geelong in their part in bringing community music to this region, especially at this time, and to celebrating the incredible role music plays in all our lives.

“We have a wonderful and varied program for the year ahead, showcasing Geelong soloists – Suzanne Moodie (flute) and Max Rudd (guitar) and collaborating with choirs – With One Voice and the Geelong Welsh Ladies Choir.

“There is something for everyone – ranging from Vivaldi and Mozart through to Chaminade and Kats-Chernin and finishing the year off with some themes from the screen, highlighting James Horner’s Avatar Suite.

“We invite you to join us and experience the joy and magic of orchestral music.”

The orchestra will be performing the first of its Concert Series, The Shimmering Chaminade and Touch of Magic on Sunday, May 29.