Bendigo Chorale

bendigo chorale  elena Varshavskaya, musical director

bendigo chorale elena Varshavskaya, musical director

Founded in 1957 the choir was originally named The Benola Singers. We are a four-part community choir with around 35 members. We sing a wide range of musical styles and periods and present two or three concerts each year with works ranging from the Renaissance to the present day. Previous Musical Directors have been the choir's founder, Mavis Webster MBE, Rohan Phillips, local composer and musician who has directed the Bendigo Symphony Orchestra, and Frances Monsbourgh. We also take part in community events and enjoy collaborating with other local and regional music groups. We have been successful in obtaining grants from the City of Greater Bendigo through its Cultural Grants Scheme and from Regional Arts Victoria. We support young singers with an annual Mavis Webster Award.

 Elena Varshavskaya Musical Director

 Elena graduated in 2002 from Moscow State Conservatory with Honours (Choir Conducting).  She has 15 years of choir conducting and artistic directing experience, including many concert performances, winning gold and silver awards at the 5th International Johannes Brahms Choir Competition, Wernigerode, Germany in 2005.  Since 2006 she has been assistant artistic director and a singer in the Russian Radio and Television Big Academic Choir.  She has participated in many festivals and master classes including the International Choral Festival in Melbourne in 1996.


exaudi  juliana kay, conductor

exaudi juliana kay, conductor

Exaudi was founded in 2007 by Claire Preston and Robert Stewart and quickly established itself as one of Melbourne's leading young choirs, winning the 2009 National Eisteddfod Choral Championships in Canberra. Our members are experienced choral singers who rehearse each week on Monday evenings at Melbourne High School. Exaudi performs frequently in and around Melbourne, as well as touring each year. In 2013, Exaudi became part of Young Voices of Melbourne and is conducted by Mark O'Leary OAM. Exaudi takes its name from the Latin word meaning "listen to us" or "understand us". The choir seeks to "fill the gap" between choristers' experiences in their community children's choir or school groups and adult community choirs.

Mark O’Leary Musical Director Young Voices of Melbourne

Mark o’leary  musical director, young voices of melbourne

Mark o’leary musical director, young voices of melbourne

Mark O'Leary OAM, is one of Australia's most active choral conductors, widely respected for his work with Young Voices of Melbourne which he founded in 1990 following a Churchill Fellowship study tour of outstanding children's choirs around the world. With Young Voices, Mark has produced ten CD recordings, toured all states and territories of Australia and made nine international tours to Europe, South Africa, North America, Japan, Singapore, Thailand and Samoa. Mark is also Principal Guest Conductor of Gondwana Voices, Australia's national children's choir with whom he has made three CDs and five international tours. Mark has presented many workshops on choral music education throughout Australia and internationally and is a regular guest conductor at choral festivals. He publishes Australian choral music for young choirs in the Young Voices of Melbourne Choral Series and is the author of the Sight Singing School books and web site. Mark is an Honorary Life Member of the Kodály Music Education Institute of Australia and was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia for services to choral music and education in the 2018 Australia Day Honours list.

Juliana Kay Conductor

juliana kay  conductor, exaudi

juliana kay conductor, exaudi

Juliana Kay (BA, GDipTeach) is a teacher and conductor with a lifelong interest in choirs and choral music. She has taught classroom music, directed choirs in secondary schools and has worked as a tutor for the training groups at the Australian Boys’ Choir. Juliana was first drawn to conducting while completing her Bachelor of Arts degree at Middlebury College (USA), where she directed a student-run early music vocal ensemble and took a semester of conducting classes, despite being a Geography major. She is continuing to develop as a conductor through the mentorship of Mark O’Leary and her studies towards the Australian Kodaly Certificate. As a performer, Juliana sung for many years with the Young Voices of Melbourne and now performs with Ensemble Gombert and The Australian Voices. She has been a member of Exaudi since 2014.