National Carillonists Excel in Europe

In July 2014, the National Carillonists attended the World Carillon Federation Congress in Bruges and Antwerp.

The first international concert by National Carillonists from Canberra was performed in Ypres on 4 July 2014 to acknowledge the commitment of the unknown Australian soldiers of the 1914-1918 conflict. During the program, three short poems and a piece of prose were recited and overlayed by three short carillon interludes composed by Leonard Weiss. The Australian Ambassador to Belgium HE Duncan Lewis provided the recitations at that concert. The carillonists also performed an extended programme on the renowned St. Rombouts Cathedral carillon in Mechelen on 7 July 2014, where Colonel Scott Clingan, Defense Attaché to the EU, provided the recitations.

On 29 June 2014, senior carillonist Thomas Laue was awarded third prize at the Seventh International Carillon Competition Queen Fabiola in Mechelen, Belgium. Thomas the first Australian to be awarded a prize in this competition. Of all carillon competitions, the Queen Fabiola competition is the most important in the carillon world, showcasing the art of carillon as an artistic performance of the highest standard. It was established in 1987 with cooperation of the city of Mechelen, and takes place every five years.

Thomas has been a senior carillonist at the National Carillon for 18 months under the direction of Lyn Fuller. He prepared for the competition with Isaac Wong (Honorary Carillonist in Sydney) and through lessons with professors at the Royal Carillon School 'Jef Denyn' in Mechelen, including video-conferencing lessons with the Director of the School, Mr Koen Cosaert, who recommended Thomas’ participation in the competition.

Dr Thomas Laue will commence teaching two junior carillonists in August 2014. This is the first intake of younger students and is part of the strategic succession planning initiated by the NCA for the National Carillon. Dr Laue spent three weeks prior to the competition in Belgium where he met with the teaching staff of the Royal Carillon School ‘Jef Denyn’ to learn more about their teaching methodology which will be implemented in Canberra.

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