OMVC is delighted to introduce our new Conductor and Accompanist.
Philip Rees, Conductor
When Philip Rees was eight, two events impacted on his life: his first piano and brass lesson and his parents being given a complete recorded performance of Handel's Messiah. Since then he can’t recall a time of not wanting to be a musician.
Philip has spent his entire working life involved in music education and performance. As the musical director of the Central Coast Philharmonia, he conducted many major works of the choral tradition, as well as a number of Australian premiere performances of works by Christopher Tin, (Calling All Dawns) Karl Jenkins, (Joy to the World) John Rutter (Feel the Spirit) and Alexander Lestrange (Zimbe and Ahoy). He was the chorus master for Central Coast Opera productions of Magic Flute (2016), Carmen (2017) and La Bohème (2018).
Philip moved to the Central west in 2019. He teaches brass and piano at the Orange Regional Conservatorium, is the conductor of the City of Orange Brass Band, and participates in the music program in some local schools. He was appointed Conductor of OMVC in mid-2020.
In 2010 he was awarded an OAM for services to music.
Elina Yasumoto, Accompanist
Elina Yasumoto is a critically acclaimed musician, noted for “command and grace” (Clive O’Connell - The Age), “architectural strength” (John Lill, CBE) and as “magician of the piano” (New Tang Dynasty Television).
She has built her music career in wide-ranging specialisations including as associate artist, soloist, piano teacher, chamber musician, vocal repetiteur, academic and published musicologist.
Elina has performed around the world as a soloist in renowned concert halls, including the Smithsonian, touring the United States of America as an Australian Ambassador for the Reaching the World Festival, the concert hall of the Sydney Opera House, Melbourne Recital Centre, Yamaha Hall in Ginza, Tokyo. She has broadcast frequently on Australian radio and television, performing both live and studio recorded solo and chamber works on ABC Classic FM and MBS-FM in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.
In her teaching studio, she has a strong focus in developing piano technique, effective in resulting in her students being awarded first prizes at Eisteddfods in Queensland and Victoria, honours and distinction results in AMEB exams and music scholarships.
Elina Yasumoto has collaborated as an associate artist with renowned musicians, as well as with students in all instrumental groups, as the official faculty accompanist for the Australian National Academy of Music wind auditions and the faculty accompanist at the University of Melbourne Conservatorium of Music.
She has a particular interest in working with singers, trained as a vocal accompanist with Robert Allman AM OBE, Merlyn Quaife and Maree Ryan, leading to appointment as senior lecturer in piano accompaniment at the Central Queensland Conservatorium of Music.
Highlights of her solo career include performing as concerto soloist Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue on Channel Ten Television, winning the prize for Best Performance of the Music of J S Bach at the 2010 Australian National Piano Award, and performing as concerto soloist the Rachmaninoff Third Piano Concerto with Orchestra Victoria conducted by Nicholas Braithwaite. Elina also won the second prize at the 2010 Australian National Piano Award.
Elina has recently commenced teaching piano at the Orange Regional Conservatorium.