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Melba Hall

Royal Parade


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The Melbourne Conservatorium of Music presents it’s second Double Bass Day and Competition, bringing together performers, teachers, students, luthiers and exhibitors from all over Australia. Hosted in the acclaimed Melba Hall, the day will feature recitals, masterclasses, Jazz clinics, lecture demonstrations, and a special program for Young Bassists.

Attendance for the day as well as entrance to the competition are free and open to any double bassists and their families.

Ticket Types

There are three different types of free tickets available for this event:

  1. General Registration - for bassists and their families interested in watching or participating in masterclasses
  2. Competitor - for bassists wishing to compete in the Solo Competition
  3. Young Bassist - a special program for young bassists open to all ages and levels

Schedule of events

(In Melba Hall, unless indicated otherwise)

9.30am Exhibition opens Bass makers, bow makers, rosin makers, and dealers from all over Australia, Tallis Room.

10.30am Masterclass with Andrew Sinclair, West Australian Symphony Orchestra (WASO) Principal Bassist,

12.30pm Historical Bass and Cello duo recital Presented by Guy Fishman and Rob Nairn,

2.00pm Masterclass with Matthais Weber, Professor of Bass, Stuttgart

3.30pm Competition final round

4.30pm Young Bassists’ concert

5.30pm Clinic/masterclass: Rufus Reid

6.30pm Announcement of Competition winners Solo concert featuring Steve Reeves, Ben Hanlon, Stephen Newton, ANAM quartet, Stuart Riley and others,

7.30pm Solo Recital: Andrew Sinclair

8.30pm Final concert: Rufus Reid Jazz Trio Performance,

Students can register their wish to perform in one of the masterclasses by emailing Rob Nairn (

Solo Competition

Competitor's schedule

9.00 – 10.20am Round 1 (closed to public)

— Competitors may attend masterclasses and presentations —

12.302.00pm Finalists rehearse with accompanist

3.304.10pm Competition Round 2 (open to public)

6.30pm Announcement of winners of presentation of prizes

Competition details

The Solo Competition is open to any bassists under 28 years of age, and will be run in two rounds. The competition will be adjudicated by a distinguished panel of judges, including the principal bassists of several of Australia’s orchestras.

Registrations to compete close on 31 October. To register for the competition, select the "Competitor" ticket, and we will be in contact with further information.

Round 1

Candidates must prepare an unaccompanied work of their own choice (8 mins approx) plus the set work — Galloping Goliards by Christopher Willcock — which will be sent to the candidates upon application. The first round will start at 9.00am on the day, and will be closed to the public.

Round 2

Candidates must prepare an accompanied work of their own choice (10 mins approx). The second round will be open to the public and an accompanist will be provided.


The MCM is delighted to announce that the first prize for the solo competition on 26 November will be a new bow by master bow maker Phillip Smith.

A Prize for the runner up and further prizes will be announced

Young Bassists Program

The Young Bassists program at the MCM bass day is open to students of all ages and levels. Registration is open from 9.30 and the program begins in the Heinz room of the Conservatorium (Royal Parade, Parkview) at 10.30.

The program runs until 3.30 and will feature a big warm up, two masterclasses for which students can register an interest to play, and rehearsals of the large bass ensemble works we will perform. A final concert open to the public will take place at 4.30 in the Melba Hall, featuring music the Australian Premiers of music written expressly for young bassists (Simon Garcia’s ‘Dream can Come True’ and David Heyes’ ‘The Carousel’ )

The music for the ensemble works will be sent out to the applicants (via dropbox) as early as possible. Lunch will be provided.

Students can register their wish to perform in one of the masterclasses by emailing Rob Nairn (

Young Bassists Schedule

9.3010.30am Registration

10.3011.00am Group warmups

11.00 – 11.50 Masterclass with Sylvia Hoskins

— Break —

12.0012.50 Rehearsal ensemble music

12.501.15 Talk about making basses or Concert by bass octet

— Lunch break —

2.002.50 Masterclass with Andrew Sinclair

2.503.30 tbc

3.304.15 Rehearsal ensemble music

Sponsorship is gratefully acknowledged from AUSTA Victoria, D'Addario Strings, Atelier Philip Smith, Atelier Puglisi, Recital Music and the International Society of Bassists.

Image: Rufus Reid, photographed by Jimmy Katz
We strongly encourage advanced booking for all of our events. This guarantees your seat, and allows us to communicate any unforseen event scheduling changes with you. Please note, tickets are required for entry to paid events.

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Melba Hall

Royal Parade


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