What the TSO Education team has been up to in Term 1

18 Apr 2024. Written by Jack Machin, TSO Learning and Community Projects Manager.

It's been a busy start to 2024 for the TSO Education team as we hit the road for our inaugural Northern Residency, launched two new initiatives for schools, participated in the 35th Residential Summer String Camp, and celebrated Samuel Hooper as our 2024 Rising Star.

TSO in the North!

On Thursday 8 Feb, the TSO hit the road for our inaugural Northern Residency. It was a fantastic three days starting with sold out family concerts in Georgetown and a day of schools’ concerts, and another Family Concert, generously hosted by Scotch Oakburn College.

Actor Jane Longhurst, conductor Gary Wain and the TSO musicians explored the world of dance music and the concert concluded with a mosh pit of kids busting out their best moves – perhaps to overwrite the memory of their parents and grandparents attempting the Can Can!

On Saturday we welcomed local musicians to instrument workshops which culminated in a scratch orchestra rehearsal conducted by myself (Jack Machin) and a Brass Ensemble led by TSO Principal Trombone, David Robins. TSO Principal Piccolo and Tutti Flute, Lloyd Hudson, wrangled the biggest task of the day – preparing a ‘flutter’ (collective noun for flutes!) of ten young flute players in a masterclass while the building vibrated to the sounds of strings, clarinets, brass, percussion and a small but excellent posse of double bass enthusiasts.

Science and sound combine forces

Science and Sound is a new initiative for schools exploring high and low sounds, vibration, and resonance for students in Kindergarten to Year 4. We discover how the different instruments work and interweave this with several pieces suitable for young children.

Tim Jones (tuba) and Rachel Howie (flute) delivered 11 performances in schools across Greater Hobart, Orford and Triabunna. It was a way of engaging with almost 600 children in their natural habitat and this nimble module is a key strategic arm of performing live to every Tasmanian child.

If you would like any more information about having the TSO perform in your school, please contact

📸 Paul Costin for LYCO Launceston Youth & Community Orchestra Inc.
TSO heads to String Camp!

The 35th Residential Summer String Camp was held in Ulverstone in the second week of Jan. TSO musicians Emma McGrath, Yue-Hong Cha, Will Newbery, Jonathan Bekes and Matt McGrath were in attendance and worked with 180 musicians of all ages, spread across three large groups.

The camp is an important annual fixture for string players across the state, attracting mentors from as far as the USA. Camp Director and Founder Margaret Hoban said “we are so grateful for the support of the TSO in our activity – we could not do what we do to the level that we do without you!”

What a brilliant week; we can't wait to be back in future years.

📸 Paul Costin for LYCO Launceston Youth & Community Orchestra Inc.

Samuel Hooper
And the 2024 Rising Star is... Samuel Hooper ⭐️

On March 25, TSO had the pleasure of adjudicating the 2024 Rising Star competition. The candidature this year was outstanding, and all performers did themselves and their teachers proud.

The winner announced on 4th April, was a young violinist 14-year-old Samuel Hooper who displayed incredible virtuosity, maturity well beyond his years and a level of musicianship seldom witnessed in one so young.

His performance of Sarasate’s Caprice Basque had the panel absolutely captivated from the first note to the last. You can hear him perform with the TSO on Saturday 17 Aug at the Big Rehearsal (information coming soon).

Student conductors take to the stage

The brainchild of Eivind Aadland, TSO Chief Conductor and Artistic Director, 2024 has seen students from the Hutchins School participating in the TSO’s first school-based conducting program this year.

Under the expert teaching of Will Newbury, TSO violist and local conductor, the lucky boys have already learned the basics and been treated to sitting in on a rehearsal where they had a short masterclass with Eivind.

See our education program and resources, or get in touch with Jack Machin from the TSO Education team at

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