Molly Collier-O’Boyle is a Melbourne-based musician. She spends most of her time plucking, picking and sawing away on Chinese viola and Italian violin in practice rooms, cursing all the while. When not screaming profanities at wooden boxes, she works as an educator, curator and performer, aiming to creatively mix and bend genres together whilst combining different artistic mediums in a variety of projects and experiences.
Born in sunny Brisbane, Molly grew up in a musical household and played jazz/funk bass and folk violin. After realising that classical music was pretty cool too, she completed her Bachelor of Music in Advanced Performance in classical violin under the tutelage of Michele Walsh in 2015 at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music, and in 2016 completed her Graduate Diploma in Music Performance at the University of Queensland with Adam Chalabi. Since 2017, she somehow has wound up with a viola in her hand studying at the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM) with Caroline Henbest.
In 2019, Molly was an Emerging Artist with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, commenced her Masters through Griffith University which explores curation through creative collaboration and composer-performer relationships (with two commission projects completed and two more in the works), and was an Academist with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra in Germany. She was a recipient of the ADFAS Yarra prize for Most Outstanding ANAM Recital Program, and the Lorne and Ann Cole prize with her beloved Rathdowne Quartet.
Molly has been an Australian World Orchestra Academy Musician under the baton of Maestro Riccardo Muti, a finalist in the 3MBS ‘The Talent’, a semi-finalist in Melbourne Youth Orchestra's Virtuosity Competition, and winner of the Corelia Quintet prize for Best ANAM Performance of a Work by a Female Composer in 2018. She has attended Ensemble Evolution where she was tutored by members of the International Contemporary Ensemble at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity (CAN 2018), and was a fellow at the Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival at MASS MoCA with Steve Reich as composer in residence (US 2018).
2017 saw her as Principal Viola of the Australian Youth Orchestra, Porter Chamber Orchestra at National Music Camp, Momentum Ensemble and a recipient of an Ernest V. Llewellyn Memorial Fund. In this year, Molly premiered Nabunum’s Water by Melody Eötvös for chamber orchestra, mixed media and video, and Stuart Greenbaum’s Sonata for Viola and Piano: Leaving Earth.
Other accolades include the Minor Award in the Ena Williams Postgraduate Award, and First Place for both the Jani Hanki and 4MBS chamber music prizes. She is currently a member of the Rathdowne Quartet, in a viola and piano duo project with Liam Wooding, and has played chamber music alongside the likes of Lawrence Power, Gregory Ahss and Anthony Marwood at ANAM.
As a freelancer, Molly works as a casual musician with the Melbourne, Queensland, and Adelaide Symphony Orchestras, Camerata Queensland’s Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra Victoria and Opera Australia Orchestra. Being a passionate chamber musician, she has performed in such festivals as the Australian Festival of Chamber Music, Canberra International Music Festival, Stradbroke Chamber Music Festival, Musica Viva Festival (AYO Chamber Players), Huntington Estate Music Festival, Four Winds Easter Festival, Woodford Folk Festival and was a curator for Brisbane's successful arts event series Paint it Red. She has performed in the Sunday concert series at the Coffs Harbour Conservatorium, as well as popular cross genre events series such as Dots + Loops and Play On.
Find out more - mollycob.com
Musician Beneficiary Support generously provided by ANAMsyndicate – Arnold and Mary Bram, Jerry Koliha & Marlene Krelle, Kerry Landman, Traudl Moon OAM, Richard O'Dwyer, the late Rob Piaggio, Igor and Jenny Zambelli
Photo by Pia Johnson