Thea Rossen - Percussionist
Thea Rossen is an exciting and dynamic percussionist. She is celebrated for her solo and chamber recitals and has attracted worldwide attention for her Music for our Changing Climate, a powerful performance exploring issues surrounding climate change developed with her ensemble the Ad Lib Collective throughout a residency at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, Canada.
As a soloist and chamber musician, Thea was a fellow at the Bang on a Can Summer Festival and a finalist for the Freedman Classical Music Fellowship in 2018. She has performed with a range of international artists including Vicky Chow, David Cossin and Lisa Moore and is a casual member of the percussion sections of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria. Thea has presented works at the Melbourne Recital Centre’s Metropolis Festival, Peninsula Summer Music Festival and was presented by Play On as a featured artist in their sixth series.
During her time at the Australian National Academy of Music, Thea was awarded prizes for all of her solo recitals including Most Outstanding Performance and Best Program. Thea received her Bachelor of Music Degree with honours at the University of Western Australia studying with Dr Louise Devenish and Tim White.
Michael Sollis - Composer
Michael creates captivating artistic journeys by sharing diverse worldviews with curious people, inviting audiences to discover and question the world around them. As a composer, artistic director, and mandolinist, Michael has had a unique impact on the Australian music scene. This has included his position as founder, composer, and artistic director for the acclaimed Griffyn Ensemble, and Artistic Director, Education for Musica Viva Australia – working with Australia’s finest musicians to develop programs to give over 280,000 Australian school students the best opportunity to discover music.
Michael is keenly sought after as a freelance composer, with works performed by groups such as the Australian String Quartet, the Australian Voices, and internationally by exhAust, the the peärls before swïne experience, and Red Note Ensemble. Michael regularly collaborates with experts from other fields to create new artistic works – working with visual artists, dancers, astronomers, geneticists, and even Rugby League clubs. Michael has created new music and run workshops in schools, retirement homes, offices and even prisons in countries as diverse as Australia, Papua New Guinea, Egypt and the United Kingdom. Michael has sat on numerous advisory boards, and was the founding chair of IMC Youth – the youth component of the International Music Council. Michael is recognised as one of Australia’s leading teaching artists, delivering programs for early childhood, tertiary composition, and adult community groups.
Recent projects include One Sky, Many Stories, with iconic indigenous songwriter Warren H. Williams, and The Milk Carton Confessions - exploring our motives for recycling - with percussionist Thea Rossen.