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National Council

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

President: Dr Debra Shearer-Dirié

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Dr Debra Shearer-Dirié received her Doctor of Music in Choral Conducting from Indiana University, USA.  Her qualifications range from degrees in instrumental pedagogy, Kodály Education (obtained from the Kodály Pedagogical Institute in Hungary), a Master of Music Education, and her degree in choral conducting.  

Debra has lectured at The University of Queensland School of Music, Queensland Conservatorium and the Australian Catholic University.  She is Musical Director of the Brisbane Concert Choir, Musical Director of Fusion, and conducts the Vintage Voices, a singing ensemble for aged 65+. Debra has directed her choirs in performances in Europe, North America, Korea, and of course, Australia.  Her singers are drawn in by her attention to the promotion and advancement of artistic excellence in choral singing and choral conducting.  

Debra has served on the National Council since 2010 and was editor of ANCA's publication, Sing Out, from 2008-2020.  She has also been a contributing reviewer for the International Choral Bulletin (International Federation for Choral Music) since 2012. Her year is filled with guest conducting and adjudicating at Choir festivals in Australia and New Zealand.   

ANCA's National President shapes the artistic vision and direction of the association. Working closely with State Presidents, Debra supports the planning for the National Research in March 2021, the 30th Birthday celebrations and the National Webinar series. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chair: Guy de Villiers 

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Educator, music director, arranger, composer and researcher, Guy de Villiers combines his passion for community and faith based singing with an active research agenda in not-for-profit organisational ethos.
After graduating from the Royal Academy of Music, Guy's early professional years were in music theatre production for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Really Useful Group. Whilst developing a range of outreach education experience with prominent UK arts organisations, Guy's ten years of school-based experience includes a wide range of educational settings at all levels of the P-12 context including as Director of Choral Music. Guy's academic governance experience includes over twenty years on Standing Committee (London University), High Degree Research Committee (UNSW) and Shadow Board (Arts & Social Sciences, UNSW). More recent experience sits in Finance & Property, Building Management and Risk in several Not-for-profit contexts. 

As National Council Chair, Guy supports ANCA in the operational, strategic and administrative functions of the association. Working closely with the treasurer and National President, the Council Chair supports ANCA’s vision in practical and governance dimensions.  

 

Vice-President: Graham Sattler

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Graham is currently Executive Director of Mitchell Conservatorium (NSW) and casual academic with Central Queensland University. He holds a Diploma of Operatic Art and Music Theatre, a Master of Performance (Conducting), PhD in Music Education, and a Graduate Certificate in the Psychology of Risk. Prior to his current role, Graham was Director, Orange Regional Conservatorium from 2001-2012.

As National Vice-President, Graham's focus will guide the strategic, governance and advocacy initiatives of the National Council. Graham is a passionate voice for inclusion and will foster ANCA's regional and remote offerings as part of ANCA's forthcoming strategic planning cycle.  

 

 

 

 

Secretary: Kellie Mentlikowski

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Kellie Mentlikowski M Mus B. Mus/B.Teach A.Mus.A has performed with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra Chorus, Melbourne Chamber Choir and in her youth the Australian Girls Choir. She has held Head of Music positions in London and Melbourne at the Secondary Education Level. Her keen interest in conducting, music technology and music education led to a Masters of Music Studies (University of Melbourne). Kellie is currently the Music Co-ordinator at OLSH College Bentleigh directing vocal and instrumental ensembles and teaching year 7-VCE Music. She is Vice President of the Vic-Tas committee and a freelance singer, conductor and presenter. 

ANCA's National Secretary supports the operations and strategic dimensions of the Council. Kellie helps with our website, email and file administration as well as the governance role in assisting the chair and president to meet our documentation responsibilities. 

 

Treasurer: Jaishil Upadhyay

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Jaishil has a Master's in Accounting from the University of Western Sydney. In his Masters, he specialised in Corporate Accounting and Financial Management for small/medium business and Not For Profits. Jaishil have been working within the Not for Profit Sector since 2013 and have extensive experience in managing and overseeing accounts. 

As National Council Treasurer, Jaishil supports the chair in planning and implementing the national and chapter budgets and in meeting our regulatory responsibilities. 

 

Research Chair: Aleta King

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Aleta King is director of the Conservatorium of Music at Avondale University College. Aleta lectures in musicianship and conducting. She is a former lecturer at The University of Queensland and The University of Melbourne, and a former sessional lecturer at Queensland Conservatorium. Aleta is shortly to complete her Doctorate of Musical Arts in Conducting from Sydney Conservatorium of Music and is the inaugural National Research Chair. 

As National Research Chair, Aleta will guide ANCA's initiatives in research related fields and foster partnerships with other organisations within performing research. 

 

Sing Out Editor: Noel Ancell OAM

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Noel is well known throughout Australia as a conductor, composer and teacher. Highly regarded as clinician and adjudicator, he has over forty years' experience in helping musicians to achieve excellence, conducting and teaching conducting at undergraduate and graduate level. He is an Honorary Life Member of the Australian National Choral Association (of which he served two terms as National President) and a member of the Australian National Association of Teachers of Singing.

As Sing Out Editor, Noel offers his expertise in drawing together the many and varied activities of the association for ANCA's national publication Sing Out. 

   
 

Council Members

 

 

 

 

 

NSW/ACT President: Naomi Cooper

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Dr Naomi Cooper is a freelance choral conductor. She holds a PhD in music for her thesis on directing community choirs and has presented this research nationally and internationally. She has conducted primary and secondary school choirs in public, private and diocesan Catholic schools, and currently leads ensembles at the International Grammar School Sydney and Monte Sant’ Angelo Mercy College. 

Some of her current community choir projects include the national Estonian-Australian choir Kooskõlas who performed at a large song festival in Estonia in 2019, ParkinSong (a choir for people with Parkinson’s disease and their carers), New Day Carers Choir (for people caring for loved ones with lived experience of mental illness), Sydney Alterna Choir and Northside Community Choir.

Naomi works as a sessional academic at Macquarie University where she teaches vocal studies. She also runs a busy studio teaching classical and contemporary guitar. Naomi also serves on the National Council for ANATS, as NSW Chapter Treasurer for ANATS and as Vice-President of Kodály NSW. 

Acting QLD/NT President: Dr Debra Shearer-Dirié

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See above. 

 

SA President: Victoria Coxhill

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Victoria is a freelance solo and ensemble singer, secondary school teacher, and occasional conductor and vocal coach. She started singing in choirs in primary school and hasn’t stopped since. A past member of Gondwana Voices, National Youth Choir of Australia and the Adelaide Symphony Chorus, Victoria has sung as a core member of the acclaimed Adelaide Chamber Singers for almost a decade. She sings as part of a professional quartet for the Uniting Church and is a member of the State Opera of SA Chorus, alongside regular work as a soloist for a number of organisations.

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

VIC/TAS President: Sharon Batterham

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Sharon Batterham is a choral music and vocal specialist, with several years’ experience as a soloist, chorister and conductor. She completed tertiary music studies at the University of Melbourne, with a Bachelor of Music, in composition and voice, and a Bachelor of Music Education. Sharon studied voice with Kevin Casey and Hartley Newnham, and performed regularly with the Faculty of Music Choir and Chamber Singers.

As a child Sharon sang with the Australian Children's Choir, and performed at several venues throughout Melbourne, regional Victoria and South Australia. Sharon participated in the ACC’s first international tours to Hong Kong and the United Kingdom, and worked with various conductors and musical groups during that time. Sharon has also sung with the Royal Philharmonic Choir, Faye Dumont Singers, CHIME Choir and the Australian Youth Choir.

Conducting became a particular interest when Sharon commenced tutoring the training groups of the Victorian Boys' Choir, and she continued developing this area with positions in the Australian Girls' Choir and the CHIME Choirs. Training in choral pedagogy followed, under Rodney Eichenberger, Andre de Quadros and Doreen Rao, and Sharon was selected from conductors around the world to attend the 3rd Choral Symposium held by the Toronto Children’s Chorus under Jean Ashworth-Bartle.

After a break to raise her family, Sharon is now the Music Director of Southern Voices. She is in demand as a presenter at choral workshops for all age groups, and is developing a conductor and accompanist education program within the structure of Southern Voices. Sharon is the Director of Cantabella, the senior choir of Canterbury Girls’ Secondary College; she teaches voice at Killester College and Our Lady of Sacred Heart Bentleigh, and is on the committee of the Australian National Choral Association’s Victoria/Tasmania branch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

WA President: Anette Kerkovius

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Anette is a choral and vocal specialist and has been involved with music education and choral work for forty years; ranging from early childhood, primary and secondary school to tertiary levels. She has directed children’s choirs, church choirs, community choirs and all age groups within the school environment in South Africa, New Zealand and Australia. She has a passion for choral work, and believes that every child should be taught to sing in tune, and should be given the opportunity to experience the joy of singing in a choir.  She feels very strongly that students should be taught the artistry in performing and creating music. 

Anette has presented at conferences both locally and internationally including the Orff Schulwerk Associations, The Australian Society for Music Education (ASME) and The International Society for Music Education (ISME) and ANCA. Anette has also published articles on various aspects of the Orff approach to music education.

 Anette was the Director of Music at All Saints’ College in Perth, (2011 -2018), and previously the Junior School Music Co-ordinator (2003 – 2010) at the College. She now runs her own Music Studio and is a Music Education Consultant for schools. 

  

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