Assistants in italics
Music Program Manager
Language of Western Music
Abbie is studying for a Commercial Music degree at Wintec, with a concentration on performance. She has had two years of vocal training under Scot Hall and ongoing vocal training under Kyle Chuen. Abbie uses her eight years of playing guitar to support her to teach others about music and to help inspire them to find their own passion for music.
Amanda brings great depth of experience in music and musical conducting to WCSM. Currently a teacher and dean at a local high school, she has taught and also directed choirs and musical productions at several other area schools. Amanda was Musical Director of the Waikato Schools Symphonic Band for a decade, and is a performer herself, singing, and playing Flute in bands and orchestras.
Acting Music Program Manager
Andrew was resident conductor of the Waikato Symphony Orchestra (1979–85) and founded the Opus Orchestra (Opus Chamber Ensemble) in 1991. He is a Life Member of both organisations. As Musical Director of Opera Waikato he conducted Jeannie Deans and Mozart’s The Magic Flute. As Director of Music for Vision College, Andrew wrote all the papers for a BMus degree, audited by Otago University, approved and accredited by the NZQA.
He is currently a council member of The Institute of Registered Music Teachers NZ, and a board member of The New Zealand Music Examinations Board. He has a very long association with both Trinity College London and the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music. Andrew is frequently invited to adjudicate for musical events. He has a MMus (Composition) and an MA (Music) from The University of Waikato. Composing is becoming more important, the challenge is to have something to say.
Ann has worked in WCSM administration since 2013.
Originally from the USA, Ann’s background is in market research and marketing. She worked in both areas in the USA, UK and New Zealand for companies including Procter & Gamble, Grand Metropolitan, Digipol and Versus Research. Ann emigrated to New Zealand in 1995. She belongs to several choirs and plays the piano poorly, but with feeling.
Ann holds a B.A. in Psychology from Northwestern University and an MBA from the University of Cincinnati.
Recently arrived from Northern Ireland, Ann Speed was employed for 27 years as an Upper Strings Tutor by the Music Service of the Southern Education and Library Board in Northern Ireland. This role also included assistant conductor of the South Ulster Youth Orchestra and more recently musical director of the South Ulster String Orchestra. Alongside her teaching career, Ann remained an active performer in semi-professional orchestras and ensembles throughout Ireland.
Ashleigh is currently a student at the University of Waikato studying music. She started learning at WCSM when she was 7 years old and has now been studying flute for over 12 years. Currently Ashleigh is also working towards her ABRSM Flute diploma.
Bella has been a Violin student at WCSM for a number of years. She is currently Concert Master of our Sinfonia Orchestra and has been First Violin for the Waikato Youth Orchestra for three years. She is currently studying towards a Bachelor’s degree in Business at the University of Waikato.
A highly-accomplished Violinist with the Bombay Chamber Orchestra, Brinstan is the most recent addition to our Violin tutor team. He has been teaching Violin for over six years, and has particular experience in preparing students for music examinations.
A keen singer who has performed in several Riverlea Theatre productions, Brooke is also a top academic student, and comes highly recommended as a hard worker and a caring mentor when working with young children.
Caleb has been studying Guitar for ten years and is currently completing a music degree at Vision College. He is proficient in fingerstyle guitar, including both percussive and tapping methodology, and has played in a variety of bands and ensembles.
A recent University of Waikato graduate, Danielle is also a violinist and was musician of the year when graduating from her secondary school. Danielle worked overseas for 18 months and was an intern with the Waikato-Tainui College of Research and Development.
Concert Band Conductor
Danny has extensive experience as a Brass, Wind, and Bass Guitar player and teacher, a band leader, and a Ukulele player/teacher. He first played with the Waikato Symphony Orchestra in 1968, after a time playing in the 3rd Battalion, Auckland Regimental (Territorial Army) band as 1st Trumpet and currently plays trombone with the Hamilton Big Band. He has been an in-school music teacher and served as guest player and mentor with the United Youth Orchestra. Danny established the current Ukulele program at WCSM and incorporated Ukulele into the Concert Band.
Originally a student at Waikato Community School of Music, Denise volunteered at the school before joining as a tutor in 2018. She plays Bass and Double Bass, and was in both Waikato Symphonic Band and Orchestra, Waikato Secondary Schools Orchestra, and Shenanigans Irish Band. Denise directed a Musikmakers Variety Show and has played Bass for many of the group’s performances. She is also a member of Hamilton Blues Society, and holds a Commercial Music degree from Wintec.
Euan Safey has studied clarinet at WCSM and played in the sinfonia since 2014 and is currently understudying the Sinfonia conductor role. He has established himself in the Waikato music community, playing the piano/keyboard, clarinet and oboe in Waikato based orchestras such as Opus Orchestra, Trust Waikato Symphony Orchestra, Youth Orchestra Waikato and the University of Waikato Orchestra, and teaching private piano lessons. Euan is studying towards a Bachelor of Music Majoring in Performance Piano at Waikato University under Katherine Austin, and has been workshopping his conducting skills with Rupert D’cruze and Trust Waikato Symphony Orchestra for the past 3 years.
Guitar Ensemble Coordinator
Ian has played both plectrum and classical guitar for many years. He completed Trinity College Grade 8 with Distinction and holds a Trinity Level 4 Diploma in Music Performance. Ian has given solo recitals on the classical guitar, played in many rock bands, and has tutored Guitar privately for a number of years.
Jake has been a drummer for 8 years. His ‘Albert St’ band was formed four years ago. The band reached regional finals in the Smokefree Rockquest in both 2018 and 2019, and were regional winners in 2020, enabling them to perform in the National final. He often helps out at events such as Bandslam.
Jean has taught Violin both privately and in schools for over 30 years. She is involved wit tutoring the students in the WCSM String Orchestra, and plays with the Trust Waikato Symphony Orchestra.
Joyce has taught Electronic Keyboard and piano in Hamilton, both privately and in group format, for a number of years. She is experienced in the music syllabus of Trinity College of Music, London, and has a highly successful record of preparing keyboard and piano students for the College’s examinations.
Many of her students have achieved quite high exam results. Joyce encourages her students to have a strong work ethic, which will serve them well in all walks of life.
String Orchestra Coordinator, Sinfonia
Julie has taught Violin both privately and in schools for 15 years. She leads the WCSM String Orchestra and prepares music for the group. She is a section leader and relief conductor for the WCSM Sinfonia Orchestra and plays with the Trust Waikato Symphony Orchestra.
Kartika joined WCSM following a number of years of teaching and performance in Indonesia. She spent three years with the Surabaya Symphony Orchestra and currently plays Violin with the Trust Waikato Symphony Orchestra. Kartika taught in a number of music schools in Indonesia, and she is currently working towards a Commercial Music degree at Wintec’s School of Media Arts.
Marshall has been studying Drums since he was aged 14. He is a first-year Drum Major studying towards a Bachelor in Music at Vision College, with the goal of becoming a full-time music teacher. He played in Melbourne as the drummer for his high school jazz band, as well as at a number of church conferences, and now plays weekly for his home church. Marshall’s passion is to help students understand unfamiliar concepts, improve current abilities and develop new skills.
Natalie is a multi-talented 16-year-old. She plays the Violin, Recorder and various Percussion instruments, and has performed several times with the Trust Waikato Symphony Orchestra. Natalie began work for WCSM as an assistant in our Music Makers Programme and has progressed to mentoring other students in the Orchestra, as well as tutoring Recorder.
Nom is studying towards a Graduate Diploma of Music in Performance Guitar at the University of Waikato. His speciality is Flamenco Guitar and he spent a number of years studying in Spain. Nom has won Guitar performance competitions in both Japan and New Zealand.
Oliver is a fully registered music teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in Music and Theatre Studies, and a Graduate Diploma of Teaching from the University of Waikato. He was the Music Specialist at Matamata Intermediate school for 5 years and he is currently teaching woodwind, brass, ukulele & percussion at St Paul’s Collegiate School, Matamata Intermediate School and privately.
As a freelance musician, Oliver regularly performs in show orchestras for local schools and the Hamilton Operatic Society, Oliver!, Cats, Pippin & Phantom of the Opera are among the productions I have been involved in.
In addition to having been a Classical Guitar tutor and team leader at WCSM for several years, Shirley also has a background in administration and customer service with both government and academic institutions. Her work with Riding for the Disabled included marketing and volunteer vetting/organisation.
Teno has been studying Guitar since the age of seven, and is currently working towards the Grade 6 Trinity College Classical Guitar performance exam. She has won a number of awards at area performing arts competitions, and regularly performs as a part of Guitar and Recorder duos.
Steve has ten years of experience teaching music to children ages 4-12. He has coached student choirs and taught group singing, as well as one-to-one classes in singing and piano. Steve has a BA in music, and completed his postgraduate diploma in music at the University of Waikato.
The Dux of her high school this year, Torres was also a school ambassador and served on the Student Council as music co-ordinator. She plays violin, flute, saxophone and clarinet, and has worked with young children as a church group volunteer.
Language of Western Music Coordinator
Webmaster & IT Manager
A former composition student at the University of Waikato, he’s passionate about woodwind instruments of all shapes, sizes, and styles. He served as Section Leader with the Waikato Youth Symphonic Band for a number of years, as well as performing with the Trust Waikato Symphony Orchestra and various local theatre productions. His current overcommitments include a barbershop quartet, the Hamilton Big Band, and the Hamilton City Pops Orchestra. Outside of music, he is a former chef, current coder, and chronic photographer of his two pet cockatiels.
Yotam has played Cello since the age of eight, and has a Bachelor of Music degree in Performance Cello from the University of Waikato. He has worked as a freelance musician for a number of years and also plays with the Trust Waikato Symphony Orchestra (TWSO). The recipient of the 2007 Hamilton Civic Choir Associate Artist Award, Yotam also participated in the NZSO NYO in 2011 and 2012 as sub principal.