Christmas has come early for the Mitchell Conservatorium of Music in Bathurst. Violinmaker Peter Reid in nearby Orange has fashioned a quartet of string instruments from rare Australian timbers for use in the Conservatorium’s chamber music academy. The bellies of two violins, a viola and a cello come from a single slab of 1,000 year-old King William Pine, while other parts are made from centuries old pieces of Tasmanian Blackwood.
“It’s been a long haul from start to finish, and it’s really not so much a finish but a new beginning,” Reid told the ABC. “With Mitchell Conservatorium having them, we wanted that because we wanted to keep them in the central west… It’s going to outlive us and that’s a great thing”.
A philanthropic gift from Bathurst couple Ben and Martha Gelin made the acquisition possible.
Mitchell Conservatorium has just finished hosting Bathurst’s Youth Arts Awards, a community award that recognises outstanding talent in young people from across NSW’s Central West.