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Australian Musicians

Peter Dodds McCormack

Percy Grainger

Eileen Joyce

Isador Goodman

John Williamson


Noel Mewton-Wood

David Helfgof

Piers Lane

Peter Dodds McCormick  b1834—d 1916

After being born in Port Glasgow, he reached Sydney in 1855.

He taught in Schools and was an important member of the NSW Presbyterian Church . He conducted many large choirs, and composed the Music and Words to our national anthem. “Advance Australia Fair.” By the 30th May 1878,The anthem was sung by 10,000 voices at the 1907 inauguration of Canberra being selected for our National City. It was not adopted as our National Anthem until 1984.

Percy Aldridge Grainger. Pianist Composer b1882—d1961 in Born Brighton Victoria

The dominating influence of his Mother, who was also his constant companion, in all his travels and performances for 40 years. Her suicide in 1922 had a very severe impact.

He gave many recitals all over the World.

He certainly knew Dame Nellie Melba, who actually wrote him a little note. Percy’s Father designed Dame Nellie’s house at Healsville Victoria. Dame Nellie (born Helen Porter Mitchell was actually an accomplished Pianist.

During his time Percy composed music such as “English Country Gardens.”

He was friends with Frederik Delius and the Norwegian Composer Edmund Greig..

During World War 1 he actually joined the American Army as a Bandsman.

In 1938 he drew up the plans for the Grainger Museum beside the University of Melbourne Conservatorium. A Museum that can actually still be visited.

Eileen Joyce b1908—d1991

Born in Zeehan Tasmania. When the profitable silver was beginning to run out, her Father a miner, went to Kuroppin in Western Australia to look for Gold.

She eventually grew up in Boulder W.A. The clatter of the mining machinery, long conveyor belts and clouds of dust, flies,fleas, cockroaches and rotting rubbish was never forgotten. She went to St. Josephs school and heard a Piano. She became eager for piano lessons where her talent was recognized.

A fund was opened in Boulder to the send the red head to a Perth Convent, to enable her to really study classical music. She practised for many hours a day.

Sister John of the Perth Convent took Eileen to attend a Percy Grainger Concert. He attended her school to hear her play and was most impressed. He called her” a most gifted child”

She made money and gained valuable Piano experience by playing the Piano between films at Film Houses.

Money was raised in Kalgoorlie so that Eileen could go to Leipzig to study. This was between WW1 and WW2.For Eileen, the Piano and Music were her entire life. With many many knockbacks and difficulties, she was able to become a “STAR.

Isador Goodman. B1909—d1982

Moses Isidore Goodman, Pianist, Composer and Conductor was born in Cape Town, South Africa.

He played Mozart’s Piano Concerto No.20 in D Minor, with the Cape Town Orchestra at 7 years old.

After some years studying in London at the Royal College of Music, he made his debut there in 1926

He arrived in Australia at the end of 1929 and joined the NSW Conservatorium of Music in Sydney.

He played in the Ceremony for the inauguration of the Australian Broadcasting Commission in 1932. He fought in WW2 with Headquarters in PNG in a Music Job.

Although remembered as a Concert Pianist, he also broadcast for Radio and Television , and performed in Stage Productions.


John Williamson  B1945

Still alive, Composing and performing, as of 2017


Noel Mewton-Wood



David Helfgof

DAVID  HELFGOF of movie “SHINE” fame



Piers Lane


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