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First Round Jury - Strike A Chord

Elyane Laussade

A graduate of the Juilliard school in New York City, pianist Elyane Laussade has delighted audiences on five continents with her imaginative and strongly individual playing. The New York Times has said she is “a pianist with a powerful, polished technique and many an original interpretive notion….with an impeccable sense of style and dazzling power.” She has performed on numerous occasions with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and has been featured by ABC Classic FM and 3MBS in studio recordings and live broadcasts. 

As a soloist, Elyane has performed in Australia, New Zealand, Taiwan, Singapore, China, Japan, South Africa, the USA and Europe. Her concert schedule in Australia includes solo recitals, concerto performances and chamber music. Elyane’s CDs include “Just for You,” a solo recording, “These Little Things” with violinist Jemima Littlemore, and “Humanation” with cellist Luke Severn. 

Elyane’s most recent endeavour is the Mozart Project which will see her perform all 27 Mozart piano concertos with orchestras around Australia. Her love for the musical experience as a close encounter has inspired her to run a special series of intimate recitals at the Laussade Studio in Melbourne.

Blair Harris

Blair is a highly regarded solo cellist and chamber musician. He is a member of Southern Cross Soloists and Ensemble Offspring making his chamber music profile diverse with a national reach. Blair also holds a position at the Faculty of Music, Monash University as a lecturer in cello Performance.

Blair is passionate about the creation and performance of new music. His work with Ensemble Offspring, and formerly Syzygy Ensemble, has seen the commission and performance of more than 60 new works by Australian composers. Blair is in no way defined by this genre and takes pleasure interpreting the works of all epochs, especially with his acclaimed duo partner, pianist Caroline Almonte. Over his career he has worked with numerous ensembles including the Australian String Quartet, Streeton Trio and the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra. 

Blair has held guest principal positions in both the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. 

First Round Jury - Yamaha Novice Section

Eunise Cheng

Founding violist of the award-winning Partridge String Quartet and one of Musica Viva’s current Futuremakers, Eunise Cheng has had a diverse career as an orchestral and chamber musician. She is the recipient of numerous scholarships and chamber music awards including the Kate Flowers Scholarship, Wesley Music Scholar Scholarship, Flora Bunnings Chamber Music Prize, Margaret Bello Chamber Music Prize, Musica Viva Chamber Music Prize, ANAM Chamber Music Competition (1st prize) and QICMC (1st prize).

She is recognized as a graduate of ANAM, UWA, University of Melbourne, holds a Masters from the Queensland Conservatorium of Music and is a Teaching Artist of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra’s music education outreach program ‘The Pizzicato Effect’. 

Lloyd Van’t Hoff

Born in Darwin, Australia, Lloyd Van’t Hoff is fast building a career as one of Australia's most dynamic and versatile young clarinettists, creators and educators. 2019 will see Lloyd perform as a solo, chamber and orchestral musician at festivals and venues around Australia and the world, as well as continue a passionate advocacy for music education and new music through teaching and commissioning work.

In 2015 Lloyd was crowned the ABC Symphony Australia Young Performer of the Year. Lloyd has also followed his passion for chamber and orchestral music around Australia and the world, with recent appearances at festivals in virtually every state and territory in the nation, as well as in Asia, Europe and North America.  Lloyd is also a founding member of the award-winning Arcadia Winds who were named as Musica Viva’s inaugural FutureMakers. Recent orchestral highlights include concerto performances with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria, and appearances as guest Principal Clarinet with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Victoria and Melbourne Chamber Orchestra.

Lloyd studied under of Paul Dean, Floyd Williams and David Thomas at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music and the Australian National Academy of Music. More recently, Lloyd has learned with esteemed pedagogue Yehuda Gilad in Banff, Canada.