Townsville is a major centre for musical activities in the north and the cooler winter months are particularly busy. In July the Australian Concerto and Vocal Competition is held which now attracts competitors from overseas. This is closely followed by 10 days of wonderful concerts in the Australian Festival of Chamber Music. The Townsville Eisteddfod is held at the end of Term Three.
At the moment there are 31 professional members and Friends, one from Ingham, one from Ayr and one Life-member. There are teachers for piano, keyboard, theory, musicianship, organ, woodwind, guitar, voice and strings.
President: Margaret Fitzgerald; Vice President: Christine Pulvirenti; Secretary: Robyn Knibb; Treasurer: Jeanine Rush. Other committee members: Tony Fitzgerald and Pam Abraham.
Townsville Branch launched their own website www.mtaq-townsville.com at the beginning of 2015.
Members aim to raise the standards of the music teaching profession and promote their own continuing professional development The Branch provides numerous and regular opportunities for teachers to take part in workshops and masterclasses and for their students to gain performance opportunities. Members are encouraged to attend music seminars offered by visiting professionals so enabling them to keep up with the latest information on teaching methods. Some members also travel to state and national level conferences. There are many advantages to membership, not least being the fellowship, mutual support and the chance to ask for advice about specific issues that may come up while teaching. An active Committee organises the programme and is always keen for suggestions from members.
Townsville Branch hosted the Alan Lane Memorial Weekend Workshops in 2008. Professional development workshops hosted by Townsville Branch in recent years have been conducted by the following have included the following ; Sonny Chua,Chin,Michael Griffin, Cathy Sanger,Val Dickson,Mark Walton and HelenSmith.
Student Performance Opportunities
The Branch hosts three student recitals in March, June and November and the Sight Reading Tournament in May. This gives students the opportunity for performance without the pressure of being a competition. The annual Sight Reading Tournament is sponsored by the AMEB [Australian Music Examinations Board] and many entrants return each year. The focus for this is to promote the skill of sight reading in an atmosphere of fun and enjoyment.
Two referral officers deal with enquiries from those looking for a music teacher. Members keep them informed if they have vacancies. This year they are Margery [tel. 4779 0382] and Jeanine [4772 2287].