Born and raised in Brisbane, Rachel Kelly has played tuba since she was nine years old. Despite initially wanting to play flute, Rachel was handed the tuba in Grade 5 and swiftly came to love the instrument, never looking back. Rachel went on to study at the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University under the tutelage of Thomas Allely and graduated in 2020 with a Bachelor of Music in Performance. Rachel is thrilled to now be training at the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM) in 2021 under the guidance of Steve Rossé and Karina Filipi.
Throughout her career to date, Rachel has performed with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra and Australian Youth Orchestra and has performed in numerous projects as a freelance tuba player. Since 2017, she has worked closely with chamber group, The Boxties, and with this ensemble has performed in several original shows at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre. Working with this ensemble has been a hugely formative experience for Rachel and has sparked her drive to make meaningful music with others and find a new role for the tuba as a chamber instrument.
Rachel made her solo concerto debut in 2020 alongside the Queensland Conservatorium Symphony Orchestra performing Bruce Broughton’s Concerto for Tuba and Orchestra. Also during her time at the Queensland Conservatorium, Rachel was awarded first place in the 2020 Beta Sigma Phi Brass Prize and was a recipient of the Sir Samuel Griffith Scholarship.
When not playing music, Rachel enjoys catching up with friends over a soy flat white.
Photo by Pia Johnson