Conducting study options

2018 Symphony Orchestra Program

2018 Wind Symphony Program

Postgraduate Audition Requirements

We offer an internationally regarded program of postgraduate conductor training, designed for those conductors seeking the necessary skills for a professional career.

Conducting staff

The program focuses on conducting techniques and the ability to interpret the great orchestral, wind, chamber and choral scores. The Sydney Conservatorium of Music offers a unique experience in working with a range of high quality chamber, orchestral and choral ensembles on a weekly basis to prepare you for a professional career. We also offer Australia’s first graduate degrees in wind conducting with international wind conductor Assoc. Professor John Lynch.

Conductor training at the Conservatorium continues a great tradition; the teaching staff has included conductors Henri Verbrugghen, Sir Eugene Goossens, Sir Bernard Heinze and Joseph Post. Conductors Sir Charles Mackerras, Richard Bonynge, Simone Young, Antony Walker, Henryk Pisarek and Paul Dyer are among our distinguished alumni.

 2018 Conducting Program

Semester I: Advanced Undergraduate Conducting – PERF3000 (6 credits)

Conducting Auditions

  1. Auditions will take place on Friday 9 March 2018 beginning at 9am in room 3026.
  2. A sign-up sheet will be up the first day of classes, Monday 5 March, on the small noticeboard next to the office of Professor Eduardo Diazmuñoz (Room 2121).
  3. Repertoire you should prepare for the audition:
    1. Igor Stravinsky: The Firebird – Finale movement (1919 version and the Finale is from figure 11)
    2. Percy Grainger: Lincolnshire Posy (mvt 2) for wind symphony

This class will run for 3 hours on Fridays, 9am to 12pm for 6 credit points.

If you plan to audition, please make sure you clear your schedule from 9am to 12pm noon on Fridays so that you attend every session. We are aware you have Performance Practice on Fridays but you should be able to schedule it in such a way that does not have a direct clash with the Conducting Class.

2019 Conducting Program

Conducting 1 and 2 (semester 1 and 2)

2020 Conducting Program

2020 Advanced Conducting (first semester)

Featured Course in 2018

PERF6614 Graduate Wind Conducting  (Associate Professor John Lynch)
Dates: Tuesdays in Semester 1 and Semester 2 from 4:00pm – 6:30pm
Cost: TBA
Open to: postgraduate conducting majors (required of wind conductors), postgraduate students in other majors seeking an elective seminar, undergraduate students who have successfully completed the undergraduate sequence by permission (please email Dr John Lynch:, and external applicants.
External applicants: Australian applicants only

This seminar will be of interest to professional conductors and educators, postgraduate conducting majors, postgraduate students in other disciplines with experience and interest in conducting, and if possible advanced undergraduates who have successfully completed the undergraduate sequence. Apply here.

The seminar will include:

  • Expressive gesture, advanced conducting technique, body awareness and movement
  • Advanced score study, analytical and aural skills, repertoire for the wind band and conducted wind and mixed instrumentation chamber music
  • Rehearsal techniques and strategies
  • Wind band history

George Ellis conducting 1 low resStudent Profile – George Ellis
Doctor of Musical Arts (Conducting)

“I am researching the impact of symphonic orchestrations on popular music since 1960. What makes an orchestration of a popular song effective? Why do pop artists want to perform with symphony orchestras? Are orchestras amenable to this? Do orchestras enhance popular music and if so, how? A concert showcasing pop songs without orchestration and then in combination with a symphony orchestra will demonstrate the findings of the research.

“In the DMA in Conducting degree at the Sydney Conservatorium, I get to study with a leading practitioner in his field – internationally renowned Maestro Eduardo Diazmuñoz. A protégé of Leonard Bernstein, Professor Diazmuñoz is not only a world-class orchestral and opera conductor but also a first-rate teacher. He gladly passes on his fountain of knowledge which he learned from Bernstein as well as the great Leon Barzin in Paris.

“The opportunities the DMA in Conducting have given me are immeasurable. Not only do I get to conduct live musicians every week and learn from the experience under the watchful of eye of international conductor Eduardo Diazmuñoz, but I also get to put newly learned techniques into practice in public performances. Last year, I conducted the contemporary American opera Little Women for the Opera School. This year, I will conduct the Conservatorium’s Symphony Orchestra in a program of Shostakovich, Sculthorpe and Malcolm Williamson.” 

Mason St PierreMason St. Pierre
Master of Music Studies (Conducting)

As an international postgraduate conducting student, my focus with Wind Conducting allows me to experience the exciting changes that are occurring in the culture of wind and percussion music in Sydney, Australia and beyond. While wind bands have always been a source of education and entertainment for centuries, the wind “ensemble” developed in 1952 by conductor Frederick Fennell at the Eastman School of Music in the United States. The idea was a creation of an ensemble that performed original music for winds, brass and percussion (rather than mostly marches and orchestral transcriptions) with one player per part. The wind ensemble “concept” allows me to explore a variety of repertoire, stemming from pieces composed for the winds, brass and percussion of an orchestra, to chamber music, to large-scale works for wind symphony. We are a young medium as compared to the Symphony Orchestra and Choral ensembles. The genre’s lines are blurred, the envelope is continually pushed and that’s what really excites me!

“What I have enjoyed most about the educational experience at the Con thus far is the amount of talent and passion of the musicians who are focused on creating the best art possible. The faculty and staff are also superb.

“My teacher, Dr John Lynch is a leading international wind conductor with years of experience under his belt. In this semester alone we have collaborated with fabulous guest artists on amazing pieces of music including those by Alban Berg, Kurt Weill, Joseph Schwantner, Mozart and Australian composers Natalie Williams and Matthew Hindson. I have been fortunate enough to lead our Wind Symphony on our Centenary Concert, celebrating the 100th birthday of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Coming up is our first recording project featuring an array of music by Australian and female composers, as well as the world premiere recording of an original work for winds by the legendary conductor/composer Andre Previn.”