the Podium 6


Welcome to the March edition of The Podium! One of the most exciting and important programs offered by Symphony Services International is the Artist Development program. This national suite of activities provides training and development to composers, performers and conductors. In 2012, we held our first ever Conducting Summer School, led by our wonderful Director Christopher Seaman. Hosted by the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, the program took place over two weeks and was deemed by all a great success. Read more about the Summer School from our Artist Development Co-ordinator Anna Howell and a participant’s view from our inaugural international student, Maxime Tortelier.

Sticking with the subject of conducting, our featured article is by Australian conductor Luke Dollman. Luke is currently undertaking his PhD, writing his thesis on conductor training. He’s in a great position to assess programs around the world having studied in Australia, the United States and Finland. Luke was one of the early graduates of Symphony Services International’s Conductor Development program, under our inaugural Course Director Jorma Panula. He has now come full circle, assisting Christopher Seaman in teaching at the Summer School in Tasmania. Read Luke’s analysis of conductor training in the 21st century.

Also in this issue, our roving reporter Gordon Kalton Williams asks some interesting questions about classical music as he walks the boulevards of Hollywood, and our library offers some tips on avoiding problems with copyright.

Before our next issue appears, I’ll be off to Texas to experience the 2012 League of American Orchestras’ conference and to introduce American orchestras to our new, improved (and extremely affordable) Goodear Acoustic Shield. Our first shipment has sold like hotcakes and the feedback has been outstanding. National Acoustics Laboratories tests show that the shield reduces harmful noise to musicians by more than 80% while not detracting from the music at all - more details can be found on our website or you can contact our offices.

Happy reading!

Kate LidbetterKate Lidbetter
Chief Executive Officer
Symphony Services International


Issue 6 | Apr 2012

Can conducting be taught?

Foreign Correspondence. 'Walking with stars'

2012 Conductor Development Summer School

An international participant’s view of the Conducting Summer School

Canberra Symphony Orchestra

Top Tip: Is it in Copyright?

Speed Read: articles worth looking into

About us


Can conducting be taught?

Foreign Correspondenceby Luke Dollman

Can the art of conducting be taught? The question is an old one and despite the proliferation of conducting courses around the world, the answer is not straightforward. Ask a selection of experts on the subject and you will get a wide variety of answers. Read More >>

Foreign Correspondence

Foreign Correspondence'Walking with stars' by Gordon Kalton Williams

I spent Christmas/New Year in Los Angeles. It’s my other favourite city. Lest you think I’m mad, let me say why. I don’t focus on the cars and freeways. I notice coyotes in the hills, snow-capped peaks, citrus, sun and birdsong. I see the boundaries of old ranches on the street maps. Mostly, I see the movies. Read More >>

Intensive training for aspiring maestri

2012 Conductor Development Summer School by Anna Howell

It was an extremely hot January day in Hobart that saw the coming together of eight of Australia’s and one of Europe’s most promising young conductors, to attend the inaugural Symphony Services International Conducting Summer School. Christopher Seaman, director of SSI’s Conductor Development program, was the teacher for the two weeks, and the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra our host for the event. And the reason that the program is unique – significant podium time in front of a professional orchestra. Read More >>

Two intense weeks - an international participant’s view of the 2012 Conducting Summer School

by Maxime Tortelier

It was a timely coincidence that, a few days only after graduating from the conducting course at the Royal Academy of Music in London, I received an email from the department describing the various mastercourses organised by Symphony Services International and specifying that these were open, for the first time, to international students like myself. I was immediately attracted by the summer mastercourse with the TSO in particular, for it combined an established ensemble, a distinguished conducting mentor (Christopher Seaman), and – a key factor for me – a duration of two weeks, which meant I would have time to settle into my new surroundings, take in as much as possible… and recover from the jet lag! Read more >>

Canberra Symphony Orchestra

In 2012 the Canberra Symphony Orchestra (CSO) celebrates 62 years in our nation’s capital by  bringing professional, large-scale symphonic concerts of to the ACT and region. Since 2007, Dr Nicholas Milton has held the position of Chief Conductor & Artistic Director of the CSO and his creating, inspiring leadership has dramatically raised the artistic and commercial success of the organisation. Read more >>

Top Tip

Is it in Copyright?

The expert staff in the Symphony Services International Music Library have provided this easy reference tool for working out whether a piece of music is still in copyright. Feel free to phone or email if you need assistance or wish to hire a work!

A simple guide to determining whether a musical work is in copyright in Australia:

1. If the work is unpublished or the composer/lyricist/arranger still living, the work is in copyright.

2. If not, establish the date from which the copyright term is calculated: this will either be the year of death of the creator (composer/lyricist/arranger) who died last OR the year of first publication if the work was published after the creator’s death.

3. Add 50 years to this date if it is before 1955, or 70 years if after 1954 – the work will be in copyright until this date.

Speed Read: Articles worth looking into

The two stories quoted in Gordon’s letter from America:

Hawaii Symphony Orchestra to launch inaugural season

Musician Peter Eotvos: Never give what the public asks

And a good news story from the city Forbes Magazine listed as ‘most miserable’ in the United States:

Struggling Stockton finds new inspiration in classical music

About Us

Symphony Services International, formerly Symphony Australia, has for many years been orchestrating excellence in Australia. Supporting the ABC Symphony Australia Young Performers Awards and setting international benchmarks with the Conductor Development program, we also hold the southern hemisphere’s largest classical print music library, offer over 3,500 program notes and take the headache out of tour management. Now all members of the global orchestral community can benefit from our products and services, assisting orchestras and classical musicians to perform at their best.



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Symphony Services International