In 2007 Julie led the National Anthem for the opening ceremony of the Australian Youth Olympics Festival and the Australia Day Spectacular at Darling Harbour.
In 2006 Julie was a soloist for The Royal Flying Doctors Service concert (City Recital Hall, Angel Place) performing alongside many of Australia’s distinguished performers.
She has been a featured soloist in both the 2005 and 2006 Schools Spectacular live performances and the ABC TV broadcasts.
Julie graduated in 2005 from the Sydney Conservatorium High School, was selected to perform in Encore at the Sydney Opera House and was awarded a merit scholarship to the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, where she has been studying with Dr Rowena Cowley.
Julie is also a graduate of the prestigious Talent Development Project (2006).
Julie has toured Singapore with the Queensland Symphonic Winds and in 2002 was privileged to sing for HRH Duke of Edinburgh during CHOGM.
Further accolades for this fine young performer include the 4MBS Classic FM Outstanding Student Award (2003), an Australian Young Citizen Award (Beaudesert, QLD, 2002), and two scholarships from the Youth and Tourism Foundation for Young Australians (2006/07).
Focus chats to Julie about her upcoming performances.
> You have achieved a great deal, with a great list of accolades and performances. How did you become involved in music?
I’ve always been interested in music and the arts. I started singing at a young age and have always wanted to perform on stage.
It was my parents who recognised my singing abilities and continued my singing lessons. I’m very lucky to have such a supportive family.
> You have recently completed a two year Australasian tour of The Phantom of The Opera, appearing in over 200 performances in the role of Christine Daae. How intense are the performances for such a famed show? What is involved with rehearsals?
The rehearsal process was perhaps more gruelling than the actual performances! Rehearsals were intense, because everybody was keen to get it right. However, they were also extremely rewarding and we had a lot of fun putting the show together.
Phantom has been running for 23 years and is a very well formed and choreographed show. In saying this there is a surprising amount of leeway for individual interpretation and expression.
I loved each and every performance, no matter how challenging or exhausting.
> How has this experience helped you grow as a performer/singer?
Phantom was my first professional show and it was an amazing experience for me. I learned a lot about the workings of a show and how much is involved in a production of this scale.
> You are performing as the featured soloist in Hastings Choristers’ Bach to Broadway concerts later this month. Tell us about the show.
The show is a mix of popular vocal and choral repertoire from 17th century Bach through to well-known favourites from contemporary music, music theatre and opera.
Hastings Choristers is a community choir which has been together since 1990. This is their first performance in the new Glasshouse theatre, which I hear has great acoustics.
> How did you become involved in the production with Hastings Choristers?
The president of Hastings Choristers (Helen Pain) invited me to perform in this up coming concert. I first met Helen when I was performing in the Schools Spectacular, and we’ve been friends ever since. However, I did have specific interests in the concert!
Firstly, the variety of music. It’s not often that I can perform choral Mozart, music theatre and opera all in one night! Secondly, my little sister Jodie is performing as well, and this gives us the opportunity to perform together.
I’m really looking forward to our duet.
> As a young performer yourself, what encouragement do you have for other young singers?
When you listen to a good singer or watch a great performer, they make it seem effortless. In actual fact, learning how to sing and perform takes a great deal of training and effort, as well as innate talent.
I encourage young singers to keep motivated, be patient and work hard, but also have fun!
Sometimes you have to take risks in life in order to succeed. Do this whole-heartedly and follow your dreams!
> What other projects are you currently working on?
I’m currently in the process of preparing works for a recording of English Songs on the Skylark label. Hopefully it will be released early next year!
> Thank you Julie.
To see Julie in Hastings Choristers Bach to Broadway concert and for information, contact: Robyn V. Ryan OAM. Hastings Choristers Inc, PO Box 372 Port Macquarie 2444.
Phone: 02 6582 7857.