6-9 January, 2020


Rydges Hotel

701 Swanston St, Carlton ,Victoria, Australia


Getting back to basics with all things Orff Schulwerk!


Featured Presenter:

Andrea Ostertag


The Orff Schulwerk Association of NSW (Orff NSW) through the Professional Teachers’ Council NSW- is endorsed to provide the NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) Registered Professional Development for teachers accredited at Proficient, Highly Accomplished, and Lead levels.
Completing the  National Conference - Vision 2020 on 6/1/2020-9/1/2020, will contribute 18 hours and 30 minutes of NSW Education Standards Authority (NESA) Registered PD addressing 1.5.2; 2.1.2; 3.3.2; 6.2.2; 7.4.2, from the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers towards maintaining Proficient Teacher Accreditation in NSW.




International Presenters

Michael Chandler

Paul Grosse

Christoph Maubach

Andrea Ostertag

Julie Scott

Manuela Widmer

Michel Widmer

Australian Presenters

Susan-Gai Anderson

Michael Aquilina

Deb Batley

Virginia Esparraga

Peta Harper

Kofi Kunkpe

Sue Lane



Kaboom Percussion

Kirrabelle Lovell

Jon Madin

James Madsen

Kailee Marshall

Heather McLaughlin

Jane Nicholas

Dujon Niue

Andy Rigby

Barb Shearer-Jones

Brianna Slattery

Jemma Tabet

Natalie Wickham

Andrea Ostertag is a Lecturer in Elemental Music and Dance Pedagogy at the Universitat Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria.  Andrea completed her studies in Italian and Musicology at the Paris Lodron University in Salzburg, Austria in 1984.  She studied the Diploma of Elemental Music and Dance Pedagogy at the University Mozarteum Salzburg/Orff Institute from 1984 to 1988.  From 1988 to 1989 Andrea taught Early Elemental Music and Dance Education at the municipal music school Musikum in Salzburg.  And from 1989 to 1992 she was the Dance teacher at the Carl-Orff Grundschule, Traunwalchen, Germany.  Andrea has run workshops and education programs for teachers, kindergardeners and adult students in university studies, Orff Schulwerk associations and similar institutions all over Europe, Asia, the USA, UK.  Andrea has been a Lecturer for International Folkdances and she has lectured at the Orff Institute/University Mozaarteum Salzburg.

Dr. Manuela Widmer MA, born in Germany 1952, living in Salzburg/Austria, studied Music and Dance Education (Orff-Schulwerk) at the Orff Institute (Conservatory of Music and Performing Arts "Mozarteum") in Salzburg, and pedagogy at the University of Salzburg (Master degree, Doctor degree).  Manuela Widmer teaches at the Orff Institute as well as on teacher training courses around the world.  She is an author of books and articles for music and dance education.  The focal point of her work is the integration of people who are different handicapped or talented (inclusion) in the field of a "Music drama - Elemental style".

Michel Widmer, Born in Germany 1955, living in Salzburg/Austria, studied social education with focus on music and theatre.  Guest studies of Elemental Music and Dance Pedagogy at the Orff Institute in Salzburg.  Still working with children, juveniles, adults and people with special needs, families and for teacher training courses in many countries.  Since 30 years teaching at the Orff Institute, responsible for instrumental building and music and dance in social work and inclusion with different groups.  He is performing as a clown and with his “Theatre out of a Suitcase” for children and families.  He is also a member of the “Clowndoctors” at children’s hospitals in Salzburg.

James Madsen was born and bred in Sydney, where he began learning piano from a young age. He went on to study at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, University of Sydney, graduating with an Honours Degree in Music Education, studying classical piano under Stephanie McCallum.  With his background in music education, James has taught music in it’s many styles and at all levels, to preschool, primary and high school students.  He has worked in various schools and music institutions throughout Sydney and London.  He is also passionate about sharing his skills and knowledge of music education and creative thinking to other educators, presenting regularly at conferences.

James began his interest in composition when he was young, writing his first pieces for piano and recording his first cassette of original music by the age of 16. Over the years he has continued his interest in composition, producing a range of musical styles from contemporary classical works, pop music, as well as his much-loved songs for children. Jam On Toast is his unique project of music for children. His original songs and dances from his series of albums have become firm favourites amongst the world of children's music. He regularly performs his Jam On Toast concerts and also presents creative workshops. The series includes CDs, DVDs plus print resources, including accompanying song books and activity books, aiming to inspire young creative minds. Visit www.JamOnToast.com.au for more.

Paul Grosse attained his Bachelors of Music Teaching from the University of Western Australia on an Australian scholarship.  He received his Master of Arts, as a Research Scholar at Singapore’s National Institute of Education, researching in Giuseppe Verdi’s operas. He is currently an adjunct lecturer, piano tutor and choir director in various tertiary institutions in Singapore.

On furthering his training in both United States and Europe, he works extensively with both children and youth-at-risk, as well as teachers. Paul has written the syllabi for many schools and local universities that have lessons using the Orff-Schulwerk philosophy. Paul presently oversees the Singapore Orff Levels.

He travels extensively in South-East Asia, giving workshops to the marginalised and disenfranchised. He is presently the vice-president of the Orff-Schulwerk Association of Singapore.

Jane Nicholas brings a broad range of educational and life experiences to her workshops.  As part of her Humanities degree from the University of Western Australia she studied Australian Politics, International Politics and Aboriginal culture. She has worked as a Journalist, History and Economics teacher and Head of Department before music teaching in both the primary and secondary sectors.

Jane has been building positive connections and understandings between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians through innovative Music education programs.  Through conversations and collaborations with Indigenous and non-Indigenous musicians, artists and communities, she has developed different ideas for creative teaching programs, lessons, workshops and articles. She has presented at State, National and International conferences. Jane currently teaches classroom music at Willandra PS in south eastern Perth.

She is a passionate Orff Schulwerk advocate.

Dr Julie Scott  is Professor of Practice and Co-Chair of Music Education at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, USA, where she teaches courses in elementary and choral music education. Prior to teaching at the college level, Dr. Scott taught elementary music and choir in Texas schools for over 20 years. Four of her elementary groups—two Orff and ensembles and two choirs—were selected to perform at the Texas Music Educators Clinic/Convention. Dr. Scott has taught Orff Schulwerk courses to adults at eight universities in the US over the past 25 years. She has presented over 200 conference sessions and workshops at national, state, and local levels. Dr. Scott has presented at international conferences and teaching venues in Germany, Scotland, Greece, Australia, China, Italy, and Thailand. Dr. Scott is a past president of the American Orff-Schulwerk Association, and she is Founder/Director of the SMU Music Educators Workshops.

Kirrabelle Lovell is a Primary School Music teacher in Adelaide, South Australia where she teaches students from Reception to Year 7, conducts two concert bands, two choirs and recorder ensemble. She is a local presenter and committee member of the Orff Schulwerk Association of South Australia and is the Levels Course Coordinator for South Australia.


She has presented professional development sessions for Musica Viva in Schools and has taught a weekly musicianship class for the Young Adelaide Voices first concert choir and assisted on their European tour in 2016.


She has completed a variety of professional development in Orff Schulwerk in Australia including the four national level courses. In 2011 she attended the International Symposium and International Summer Course at the Orff Institute in Salzburg, Austria. In 2018-2019 she completed the ‘Advanced Studies in Music and Dance Education: Special Course’ at the Orff Institute.

Virginia Esparraga is a passionate Music Educator holding a Bachelor of Music Education from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.  She has recently completed the postgraduate course of ‘Advanced Studies of Music and Dance Education’ at the Orff Institute, Salzburg, Austria where she has also attended multiple Summer Courses.  Virginia's passion for the Orff-Schulwerk approach is demonstrated through her work as a workshop presenter, committee member of the NSW Orff-Schulwerk Association, and the organising committee for the ANCOS Bridge national conference in 2018.  Since 2013, she has been the Music Teacher at Manly West Public School in Sydney.

Brianna Slattery, after years of playing the piano, bought her first djembe – and promptly fell in love!  This sparked an interest in all things percussive, and in particular in African drumming and body percussion.  As a primary school teacher, Brianna has been teaching drumming for the past nine years and she leads the African Drumming Teacher Training program.  She is passionate about using the drum as a teaching tool, and has completed a Master’s thesis on drumming and student engagement. 

Kofi Kunkpe is an Ewe master drummer from the Volta Region of Ghana.  After studying in Nigeria, he travelled throughout Ghana and Burkina Faso, performing and teaching traditional dance and drumming.  Since then, Kofi has performed and taught with many local and international companies in America, Africa & Australia.  His teaching extends to working with disadvantaged children and he regularly teaches drumming, dance and flute in local schools in the Cape Coast region.

Jemma Tabet  is the Professional Development Manager for Musica Viva, running workshops nationally for teachers in classroom music and is a member of the NSW Orff committee.  With a Bachelor of Music and Graduate Diploma of Primary Education, Jemma has worked as a generalist classroom teacher, specialist music teacher and private music tutor for more than a decade, also working extensively with primary school choirs and ensembles.  Having travelled extensively, she has a keen love of world music and dance and is a passionate advocate of the creative arts to support and enrich learning and understanding and as a means for connection, expression and inclusivity within our communities.  In 2018 Jemma also completed a three-year teacher training in the TaKeTiNa rhythm method and facilitates workshops in the TaKeTiNa rhythm meditation process.

Sue Lane has been a member of the Musica Viva In Schools education team for many years, as a professional development manager, resource writer, presenter and consultant, supporting classroom teachers in the planning of creative music education experiences for the classroom.  Sue worked for over 20 years as a classroom teacher and music specialist presenting classroom and performance programs in primary schools on the Central Coast of NSW.  She also worked for 7 years as a lecturer in Music and Dance Education in pre-service courses at the University of Newcastle.  As an active member of the Orff Schulwerk Association of NSW, Sue is passionate about music education advocacy and supporting teachers at all levels of experience.  She has completed her PhD researching arts provision in Australian primary schools and will be taking up a position at University of Technology Sydney at the end of 2019.

Dujon Niue is a dancer, choreographer, teacher and songwriter from Mua (Moa Island).   Dujon completed his training at the National Aboriginal Islander Skills Development Association (NAISDA Dance College) and continues to share his music, dance and culture here as a cultural tutor. He has worked with the Aboriginal Islander Dance Theatre and Bangarra Dance Theatre and is the founder/Artistic Director of his very own Arpaka Dance Company at Wug Village.  This group has performed at many traditional song and dance celebrations and events in the Torres Strait, interstate and overseas.  Dujon is very excited to be now performing with the Musica Viva In Schools group, Wyniss, sharing culture through his music and dance.

Christoph Maubach migrated from Germany to Australia in 1979 after completing the 'A' Course at the Orff-Institute in Salzburg.  From 1980 onwards he conducted many Orff music education workshops throughout Australia and in other parts of the world.

His contributions and his enthusiasm took him as a guest teacher to the Orff-Institute in 1991/1992 and to course work in Estonia, Greece, Switzerland, Taiwan and Germany.

As music and dance educator Christoph Maubach has worked with the Orff Approach for more than three decades.  He held positions as Lecturer at Australian Catholic University and as Senior Lecturer at Waikato University in Hamilton, New Zealand.  As workshop leader, arranger and conductor Christoph assisted with the development of creative music education in Australia, New Zealand, Asia and Europe. His music teaching ideas and activities bring a fresh note to participants of all ages.  Nowadays Christoph works as a free-lance musician, teacher and workshop leader.

Christoph Maubach migrated from Germany to Australia in 1979 after completing the 'A' Course at the Orff-Institute in Salzburg.  From 1980 onwards he conducted many Orff music education workshops throughout Australia and in other parts of the world.

His contributions and his enthusiasm took him as a guest teacher to the Orff-Institute in 1991/1992 and to course work in Estonia, Greece, Switzerland, Taiwan and Germany.

As music and dance educator Christoph Maubach has worked with the Orff Approach for more than three decades.  He held positions as Lecturer at Australian Catholic University and as Senior Lecturer at Waikato University in Hamilton, New Zealand.  As workshop leader, arranger and conductor Christoph assisted with the development of creative music education in Australia, New Zealand, Asia and Europe. His music teaching ideas and activities bring a fresh note to participants of all ages.  Nowadays Christoph works as a free-lance musician, teacher and workshop leader.

Dr Michael Chandler is an Assistant Professor of Music and the Coordinator of Music Education at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee (USA). Dr. Chandler taught music and movement to children in Texas (USA) public schools for 16 years and was named Teacher of the Year at two elementary campuses. His student Orff ensembles have performed by invitation at the annual Texas Music Educators Conference in San Antonio, Texas in 2013, 2007, and 2005. Dr. Chandler has presented workshops and conference sessions in 38 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico and has taught Orff Schulwerk Levels I, II, and III basic and recorder in AOSA-approved teacher education courses across the United States. He is the author of Everyday Recorder, Recorder Everyday! a classroom resource for introducing the recorder in Orff Schulwerk classrooms. His publications have appeared in Update: Application for Research in Music Education and The Orff Echo.

Michael Aquilina is the Performing Arts teacher at Gilles Street Primary School situated in the centre of the city in Adelaide. He teaches Foundation to year 7 across mainstream and the Intensive English Language Program (IELP) classes. Along with his teaching he also runs 2 choirs, a junk percussion ensemble, supports the schools strong Taiko Drumming program and coordinates the instrumental programs at the school. Each year he brings the entire school community together for a large scale performance that includes every student.
Along with his teaching, Michael also works with the South Australian Primary Schools Music Festival where he supports the orchestras, coordinates the specialist drumming groups and featured items, and supports students during each performance. 
Michael is an active member of the Orff Schulwerk Association of South Australia (OSASA) where he runs the website, is a local presenter at workshops and is also the co-convenor for the National ANCOS Conference for Adelaide 2022. He also works with Music Australia and the Music: Count Us In program as the South Australian contact and presenter.
Michael has also recently undertaken the role as a music tutor with the University of South Australia in their intensive Arts Education program where he teaches education student and pre-service teachers how to develop, plan and teach music in a classroom setting.

Barb Shearer-Jones first became involved in VOSA in the early 90’s, and is now a VOSA Life Member.  A committee member from then until the early 2000’s, she contributed in a range of roles: general committee member, Secretary, Newsletter Editor, Treasurer, President, Levels Course coordinator and contributor, ANCOS rep.  She taught Primary music in Melbourne from 1979 – 2008, and now lives with her husband David on the beautiful Central Coast of NSW, doing very different things.  Since the late 1990’s she has been involved with Adult Survivors of Childhood Trauma, through ASCA (now Blue Knot Foundation).  Her work has included hosting Peer Support Groups, training Support Group conveners and facilitating Recovery Retreats for survivors of childhood abuse and trauma.

Natalie Wickham has taught Music and Performing Arts at Mitcham Primary School, Victoria, for 11 years.  She has produced and directed 5 major Grade 5/6 musical productions and 5 Grade 5/6 musical performances (in alternate years).  She runs a full performing arts program for students in Prep to Grade 6 including Music, Drama and Dance, 2 choirs, a kinder performing group and an African drumming group.  Natalie has been a member of VOSA for 10 years and she began networking music teachers on social media by creating the 'Friends of VOSA' Facebook Group in 2011.  She has completed Level 3 in Orff Schulwerk Training.  Natalie has seen first-hand how music and performing arts can powerfully support students to overcome issues caused by trauma by using the Orff approach, in particular.

Heather McLaughlin recently retired from paid music teaching, after working for many years with babies, pre-school children, primary kids, and with teachers and adults in the broader community. Workshops have included many multi-age community music sessions, and she was long-term president of Parents for Music - a Family Music Association. 
She has been closely involved with the Orff and Kodaly music education groups since the late seventies when she studied in Hungary and Austria for a year.  For five years she lived and taught in Japan, and from 2007-15 taught classroom music in several Melbourne primary schools. Through VOSA, and as a board member of Community Music Victoria, she promoted marimbas in the broader community for all ages and backgrounds of players, and organized many events such as Marimba camps for all ages.
An occasional violinist who enjoys singing and recorder-playing, she is an energetic advocate for the home-made marimba movement and the work of Jon Madin.  These days she continues to teach in schools as well as groups of retired adults through the U3A. 
In December 2016 Heather moved from Melbourne back to Taree (where she had grown up) to care for her father until he died aged 100. She now volunteers in several primary schools, teaches older adults in the local U3A and enjoys playing and singing in various groups.

Jon Madin is a musician, instrument designer, composer, and workshop leader.  He has become well-known for his many invented ‘wacky instruments’.  Although his marimba design has been built by thousands around the world and is common in primary school music rooms, it is the Musical Bikes, Echocellos and Dingboxes that often fascinate children. Performances emerge from workshops for ‘instant’ concerts.  His instruments can be played without years of technical practice.


Jon adapts or invents musical melodies for quick and satisfying group music-making.  His ‘spelling songs’ give satisfaction from sounding good right from the start.  Children concentrate, memorise, analyse, and perform in enjoyable situations; teachers and parents are impressed with the focus achieved as well as the musical results.


Jon Madin has published four books of music with CDs, and two instrument-making books.  He teaches regularly around Australia and overseas, including school workshop tours in Tasmania and South Australia.  His website is www.marimbamusic.com.au

Peta Harper is a music educator with over twenty years experience teaching in schools.  She obtained a Bachelor in Music Education from Sydney Conservatorium of Music, and completed the postgraduate ‘Special Course’ at the Orff Institute, Salzburg.  Peta has worked across a broad age range, from Kindergarten to University level, with her work being predominantly in secondary music education.  She is a presenter of the ANCOS Levels courses, has presented at workshops and conferences nation wide, and teaches the Orff component of the BMusEd degree at Sydney Conservatorium of Music.  Peta has written education materials for the Sydney Symphony, Musica Viva, and UTS education programs, and has been a marker and judge for all courses of HSC Music.  She is currently Vice President of the NSW Orff Schulwerk Association, having served on the executive committee since 2002.  Peta’s understanding and passion for the Orff approach enable her to find creative ways to unlock challenging music for students.

Deb Batley has taught music at Carinya since 2003.  In this time she has established a strong music culture using an Orff-Schulwerk perspective, and established the stage 6 music courses at Carinya.  She is particularly passionate about seeing the impact of improvisation upon students’ thinking skills.

A particular focus over the last 2 years has been conducting an AIS funded schools based research project examining the impact that direct instruction in musical instruments could have upon children with learning difficulties associated with reading.  She gets excited by seeing students change their view of themselves as learners, through finding ways of showing them that they can be successful.  A highlight of this project has been working under the mentorship of Dr Anita Collins.

Deb has been a member of the ASME NSW committee since 2012 and is the current NSW Chair.  She has been an HSC practical marker for all music courses and has marked compositions in the Music 1 course.

Since 2015 Debra has written education kits for Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s “Meet the Music” series and Stage 1-4 concerts.  She is also on the casual teaching staff of the Tamworth Regional Conservatorium; teaching Piano.  At various times since 2003 she has also taught Clarinet, Flute and directed the conservatorium choirs.

Deb has a passion for musical theatre and in her spare time, has been involved in Tamworth Musical Society (TMS), having the role of Musical Director for their productions of Sunset Boulevard (2015) Blood Brothers (2010) and Into the Woods (2011), and assistant Musical Director for South Pacific (2009) and Music Man (2010).  She is also the current musical director of the adults choir: “Check Spelilng Before Printing”, a group which often brings sanity to her week.

Kailee Marshall is a passionate music educator and advocate of Orff Schulwerk.  Since 2015 she has been employed at Bannister Creek Primary School, an independent primary school in the east of Perth.  During her time at Bannister Creek Kailee has grown the schools music program to include a Kindy-Year 6 Music program, two choirs and an instrumental program all underpinned by the Orff approach.  In 2018 while teaching at Bannister Creek Kailee was successful in gaining her Level 3 Classroom Teacher status.  Kailee has been an active member of WAOSA since 2012 holding a number of different roles within the association.  In 2017 she completed her Level 4 accreditation and in 2019 was fortunate enough to travel on a scholarship to Salzburg to attend the 2019 International Orff Summer School.  When she isn’t teaching Kailee enjoys walking to her local café with her fiancée and singing with Consort Cantare.  Moving into the future, Kailee hopes to further develop her knowledge and understanding of the Orff process and to continue to explore avenues to make a meaningful music education accessible to all children.

Susan-Gai Anderson has 30 years’ experience as a Music Educator, teaching children from 2 – 18 years of age, as well as presenting professional development workshops to adults for more than a decade. 
Sue is the Director of Belle Music Studios (Sydney’s Northern Beaches), which for over two decades offered classes for pre-school children, piano and movement classes for school-age children, as well as private piano lessons. She has directed NSW State Music Camps for the Salvation Army Church (students 12 – 16 years of age) and for 25 years was the Director of the children’s choir at her church.  Recently Sue has assumed responsibility for running a successful weekly Music session as part of the church Playgroup.
Sue trained for 4 years at Sydney Conservatorium of Music (Diploma of Music Education), and has two Diplomas in Piano Performance.        More recently, Sue has completed the Orff Levels Courses (1 – 4), and attended the Orff Schulwerk International Summer School in Salzburg in July 2008. In July 2011, Sue completed "The Jazz Course Level 2" with Doug Goodkin in San Francisco. Sue has completed the ANCOS accredited courses “Neuropedagogy and Music” and “Dance and Movement in Education”.
Currently Sue is the Early Childhood Music Teacher at SCECGS Redlands in Cremorne, Sydney, teaching 3 – 8 year olds. Sue applies Orff-Schulwerk principles in her teaching in all age groups.

Andy Rigby has carved out a unique niche for himself in the world of music, as one of Australia’s leading designers, makers, players and teachers of the harp. His performance interests include most folk traditions involving the harp.

It all began in 1981, when Andy extended his love of Irish music into the world of the Celtic harp. Self-taught by necessity, he learned the craft in the folk clubs and festivals of Victoria.

In 1984, Andy began learning Paraguayan and Venezuelan music from Alfirio Cristaldo in Melbourne. The Andean music of Melbourne’s Chilean community attracted Andy to the band “Haravicu”, with whom he played harp and kena (flute) for two years. Melbourne’s rich multi-cultural mix led to his inclusion in the “Sadko” Russian folk orchestra, the Melbourne Austrian Choir, and “Il Grupo Folkloristico Italiano” in the early 1980s.

In 1986-7 Andy absorbed some of the musical culture of Southern Africa. Since returning he has taught the making and playing of marimbas, and has played with African musicians Joe Malatji, Valanga Xhosa, and Siyo Afandi in Melbourne.

Since 1990 Andy has been a full-time musician and instrument maker.  After several years of intensive school and community workshops in marimba and flute making, Andy is now busy making folk harps to order.  His designs take features from the Celtic and Paraguayan traditions, leading to a unique hybrid style of harp which he has called the “Paraceltic Harp”. Demand is considerable, and after making 200 harps, Andy now makes only the larger harps while his assistant Stephen Oram makes the smaller “lap harps”. Andy runs harp-making workshops in central Victoria, where people make their own instruments under supervision. Andy and Stephen make extensive use of Australian timbers in their harps.

Andy performs mainly on a Paraceltic harp, and has made research trips to the Celtic countries and South America in search of music and ideas. He is well known around Australia as a teacher and solo performer of folk harp.

Andy has composed many pieces for the harp, and is proud to have been commissioned several times to produce pieces for special occasions. Some of these are featured on his first solo CD “Made & Played”, along with a range of Celtic, South American and African music, and more recently on “Andology- Vol I & II”.R

Kaboom Percussion are a duo from Perth who are passionate about inspiring a love for music in students of all ages.  Both holding Masters Degrees in Percussion, Catherine Betts and Joshua Webster started Kaboom with some fun and quirky YouTube videos and just 4 years later Kaboom has grown to be a full-time, internationally renowned music education group!  Cat and Josh have performed for over 50,000 students across Australia and New Zealand, and garnered more than 180,000 subscribers and 50 million views on their popular YouTube Channel.



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