Raised in the small, country music-obsessed town of Gore in the south of New Zealand, Laura Barton’s mother decided to rebel and become a violin teacher in order for Laura to learn. However, unable to escape her cultural heritage, Laura still had to compete in the Gold Guitars competition every year. From there, she escaped to the New Zealand School of Music in Wellington, where she has recently completed a Bachelor of Music with First Class Honours. She is about to enter her third year of training at the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM), and is concurrently completing a Master of Music (Research) through Griffith University, which combines her dual loves of violin performance and orchestral conducting.
A passionate orchestral musician, Laura performs regularly with many professional orchestras around New Zealand and Australia. Her recent orchestral highlights have been performing with the Australian World Orchestra, and performing as Guest Concertmaster of the Dunedin Symphony Orchestra. Laura is also a keen chamber musician and is involved with a number of ensembles, including the Tasman Trio and Duo VAARP.
Laura is an advocate for the performance of new compositions. She has collaborated with several award-winning New Zealand composers on both solo and orchestral projects, and has commissioned a chamber work for Duo VAARP.
As a conductor, Laura has worked with professional small ensembles premiering new works, and is the conductor at the Six Piano Project. She has received mentoring from conductors including Kenneth Young, Matthias Foremny, and Simone Young.
IN LAURA'S WORDS
"I have an ambition: to earn renown not only as an orchestral musician, but also as a conductor. Since I was born, I’ve always known that this is who I am going to be. So, growing up, I explored viola, voice, piano, chamber music – and theory – until I finally discovered violin…but that's another story.”
Musician Beneficiary Support generously provided by ANAMsyndicate – Jannie Brown, Elaine Canty AM and Roy Masters AM, Pamela Dingle, Anthea Hill, Peter Moran, Richard O’Dwyer, Rowan Streiff
Photo by Pia Johnson