Rohana Brown (2nd violin) has been a member of the TSO since August 2009. She moved here from Melbourne, where she completed her B. Music with honours at the University of Melbourne, majoring in performance. She studied with Elizabeth Sellars and William Hennessy and was awarded several prizes for performance, including the Zelman award, Lady Turner Exhibition and Wright Prize. She spent 2 years at ANAM studying with Alice Waten. In 2008 she moved to Syd- ney where she completed a Fellowship with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and also began stud- ies for her Masters at the Sydney Conservatorium. The following year she travelled to Salzburg to participate in the Mozarteum University's International Summer Academy.
Rohana toured Europe in 2007 with the AYO, and was concertmaster for the 2008 season. In both 2003 and 2006 she was a finalist in the Hephzibah Menuhin Memorial Awards. Also in 2006 she was awarded the prize for the best performance of a New Zealand work at the Gisborne International Music Competition. Rohana regularly performs chamber music, and has had many highlights such as performing for Pope Benedict during his visit to Sydney for World Youth Day in 2008. Aside from performing, Rohana also teaches violin and piano.
Karen Smithies moved to Tasmania from the Central Coast of NSW in 1998. She completed her Masters in Music Performance at the University of Tasmania in 2003, studying with Beryl Sedivka and David Bollard. Upon graduating from Sydney Conservatorium with a Bachelor of music in piano performance and accompaniment, Karen was awarded the “Mollie Neal” scholarship for excellence in Accompaniment. She has appeared as soloist and accompanist with regional orchestras and major vocal ensembles across the Central Coast and in Sydney.
Karen has made several national ABC and 3MBS FM broadcasts with artists such as cellist Christian Woijtowicz, violinists Marina Phillips and Romana Zieglerova, baritones Christopher Richardson and Michael Lampard and the TSO Brass and Friends.
Karen is currently lecturer in Accompaniment at the Tasmanian Conservatorium of Music and has lectured in piano studies at the University of Tasmania since 2000. In that time she has been busy as a repetiteur, and accompanist of undergraduates, postgraduates and visiting artists at the Conservatorium and throughout Tasmania. Karen regularly plays as orchestral and rehearsal pianist for the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and repetiteurs for the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra Chorus. Karen lives in on Hobart’s Eastern shore with her husband Matthew and four children and is working on establishing a music centre in Lauderdale and its surrounding areas
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