Directed by student conductors, this concert feature three world premieres by UQ student composers (Felicity Mohr, Jemima Drews, and Timothy Clark) as well as Richard Strauss' Serenade, op. 7 in E-flat Major. 

Free entry, complimentary coffee and cake from 10:30am. 


Timothy Clark is currently undertaking his third year in the Bachelor of Music (Honours) program at The University of Queensland, majoring in Composition under the tutelage of Dr. Robert Davidson. Since the age of nine Timothy commenced his learning experience on the flute and alto saxophone at fifteen, while performing in concert bands, choirs, flute choirs, chamber ensembles, and as a soloist. He is debuting his first performance as a director/conductor at St. John’s Cathedral, leading a flute ensemble undertaking his composition Allegro in A. Timothy wishes to continue his composing and performing while considering a career in instrumental music teaching.

Felicity Mohr is in her third year of a Bachelor of Music (Honours) degree at The University of Queensland, majoring in composition under Dr. Robert Davidson. She has studied violoncello and piano since the age of eight, and has also studied harpsichord for four years. She achieved her AMusA in ‘cello in 2014 and is studying with Angela Turner to take the AMusA in piano later this year. Felicity enjoys performing as an orchestral and chamber musician and plays cello in The University of Queensland Symphony Orchestra. She has played cello, oboe, and cor anglais in various Queensland Youth Orchestras (QYO) groups for nine years and is currently in her fifth year playing cello in Queensland Youth Symphony (QYS). She toured with QYS to Hong Kong, South China, and Germany in 2017. Felicity has a particular passion for music theory and musical analysis. Sturmfrei, written by Felicity for UQ Winds, is her first publicly performed composition. In a grand collaboration with six other composers, Felicity is currently working on one movement of a seven movement suite, Apollo 11, for QYO Wind Symphony to premiere in June 2019.

Jemima Drews is a second year flute student at The University of Queensland under the tutelage of Patrick Nolan. Jemima is passionate about orchestral music and is a member of the UQ Symphony Orchestra and Queensland Youth Orchestra Wind Symphony. She also augments with the Queensland Youth Symphony on both flute and piccolo. In 2018, she was performed at the Bangalow Music Festival, and was a finalist for the UQ Wind and Brass Prize. She is Manager, UQ Winds and has been promoted to Orchestral Manager, UQ Symphony Orchestra for 2019. Teaching and ensemble direction are some of her passions. When she isn’t practising or teaching, Jemima enjoys strong coffee and loud symphonies.

Elisabeth Balarezo is actively involved in community music projects around Brisbane and overseas.  Since 2016, she has been Artistic Director of a Christian Youth Choir based in Ormeau, mentored by Mr. Graeme Moreton.  Elisabeth travelled to South Africa for a community music project in December 2016. During her time there she formed and conducted string chamber ensembles and a youth choir that performed in a concert series.

In 2017, Elisabeth completed a conducting internship as part of her studies with Dr. Warwick Potter, after which she served as Artistic Director in a two-week music camp in New South Wales. This involved conducting an adult and children’s choir for a community performance and recording.  Elisabeth is currently in her final year of a Bachelor of Music (Honours) at The University of Queensland. Her Honours project involves conducting UQ Winds researching the process and challenges that an undergraduate conductor faces when directing a tertiary wind ensemble playing Strauss’ masterpiece.


Program notes

Allegro in A – Timothy Clark

Allegro in A is inspired by late Baroque to Classical music, particularly by the chamber works of Haydn and Mozart. The piece is also heavily inspired by the tonal centre and the significance of sonata form. It is expected to be performed with liveliness and energy. Essentially, rather having the first flute part performing majority of the melodies and solos, every part including the piccolo fairly shares their own moment throughout the piece.

Sturmfrei – Felicity Mohr

The German term, Sturmfrei , directly translated means “storm free”. The definition of Sturmfrei used as a colloquial term is explained in a YouTube video in which everyday German people are approached by interviewers asking them its meaning. One man said it refers to when you have the house to yourself when you otherwise live with a person or people and “you can do what you want and go completely crazy and there won’t be any consequences for you. And it’s the very first time you can really go crazy.” In Sturmfrei, the stormy and sinister opening, and the mournful harmony that directly follows, represents feelings of restriction, frustration, and discontent due to a lack of Sturmfrei. The piccolo solo later shared with first flute is suggestive of the way the visual of a twilight scene engenders a warmly optimistic feeling, albeit temporary, which can be connected to the sensation of Sturmfrei. The breath of fresh air, that the highly rhythmic and faster section of the piece exudes, depicts the new and special feeling of freedom and happiness that is Sturmfrei. The constant semiquavers in the alto flute and a 7 against 5 polyrhythm suggest an endlessly frolicking scene. The 7 against 5 section also provides a fleeting feeling as all the parts over the foundation provided by bass and alto flute are entirely constructed from allusions to earlier motives in the piece, and they feel like they’re flying by, being snatched away as the next motive starts. The return of the intense opening material of course depicts Sturmfrei coming to an end. The canon in the final bars signifies feeling as if one is a shadow of their former self.

A Nebulous Waltz – Jemima Drews 

The word “nebulous” refers to haziness and indistinctness. The piece was inspired by the substantial lack of interesting music for flute choir. I decided that I composition couldn’t be that hard (I was wrong) and enthusiastically set out to create something out of absolutely nothing. The title is in reference to the origins of the piece, as well as its unpredictable structural form. It is my hope that audiences will find the work both quirky and sincere. I am very grateful to The University of Queensland Winds Flute Choir for premiering the work. – Jemima Drews.

Serenade, Opus 7 – Richard Strauss

Although the Serenade has the same number of instruments as the well-known Mozart Gran Partita the structure and the scoring are quite different. The work is a single movement in sonata form. Strauss uses two each of flutes, oboes, clarinets and bassoons, with four horns and a contrabassoon or bass tuba – a more conventionally orchestral scoring than Mozart's use of bassett horns. Like Mozart, however, Strauss relishes the range of timbres that different combinations of the instruments can produce: each phrase in the first 24 bars uses a different set of instruments before they all combine for the first time at bar 24. A particularly distinctive scoring occurs where the oboe's opening theme (illustrated) is presented at the recapitulation by the four horns, with bassoons providing the bass.

About 2018 UQ Music @ St John's

Photo credit: Chris Hall

Following the success of the inaugural series in 2017, UQ Music @ St John’s features performances by woodwind soloists, the UQ Winds, and the UQ Chamber Singers in 2018. This series will also feature numerous world premieres by School of Music’s award-winning cohort of student composers, led by Dr Robert Davidson.

The Cathedral is kindly offering our audience members complimentary coffee and cake from 10:00AM prior to each UQ Music @ St John’s concert. Entry is free so come along and listen to the stars of tomorrow in the beautiful and serene setting of St John’s Cathedral in the Brisbane CBD.


373 Ann St, Brisbane City
St John's Cathedral