Nicola’s music journey began as a year six student when the horn was the last instrument left to choose. She clicked with the horn and in 2021, 11 years after that fateful day, Nicola will commence her training at the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM). She is incredibly excited to be learning under Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s Principal Horn, Ben Jacks.
Brisbane-born and raised, Nicola recently graduated from the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University (QCGU) where she studied under the tutelage of Peter Luff, Ysolt Clark and Malcolm Stewart. Nicola was a member of the Griffith Honours College and upon commencement of her studies in 2017 was awarded a Sir Samuel Griffith Scholarship.
Nicola freelances across Brisbane and is a casual musician with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Queensland Pops Orchestra and Camerata – Queensland’s Chamber Orchestra.
As a mentee with Ensemble Q Nicola has performed twice with the Lisa Gasteen National Opera School, under conductors Simone Young and Ward Stare, and in September 2020 appeared on the Melbourne Digital Concert Hall. She has also been invited on two occasions to be a guest broadcaster on Brisbane’s 4MBS Classic FM radio station.
Throughout her time at university, Nicola was an active member of many chamber music ensembles including QHorns (QCGU’s horn ensemble) and was a founding member of the award-winning Anemoi Wind Quintet. She has performed frequently in the QCGU Symphony Orchestra – a particular highlight was playing Principal Horn in Strauss’ Ein Heldenleben under maestro Johannes Fritzsch. As a soloist Nicola performed the first movement of Haydn’s First Horn Concerto with the QCGU Symphony Orchestra in December 2020.
As well as performing, Nicola thoroughly enjoys teaching. Prior to her move to Melbourne she held horn teaching positions at St Aidan’s Anglican Girls’ School and All Saints Anglican School.
Outside of horn Nicola enjoys reading, writing and arranging music, eating good food and dinghy sailing.
Photo by Pia Johnson