David Shaw, Head of Keyboard Studies at the Orange Regional Conservatorium
“I actually studied flute for seven years,” said David Shaw, who is now Head of Keyboard Studies at the Orange Regional Conservatorium.
David grew up in here in Orange and was pursuing a career as a musician in Melbourne when the opportunity of a job in town arose.
“I left here at the end of 2009 for university and played with some orchestras and then went to an orchestral training academy in Melbourne,” said David.
“I was living and working in Melbourne, playing in some professional orchestras and I could have either taken the dive and kept going with that and been a casual musician doing the audition circuits to try and land a full-time job with an orchestra, but then an old acquaintance of mine put up on Facebook asking if there was a pianists who wanted some work so I came back with my wife for a year to see if we would like it and we haven't left!
As Head of Keyboard Studies, David oversees eight piano teachers and handles all new enrolments amongst many other duties.
“Any new student looking to start piano, I get in touch with the family and have a chat and then figure out who might be best suited to teach that student,” he said.
“I also manage all the accompaniment requests for anyone doing an exam or a performance or eisteddfod anything like that. And any concerts here that require pianists and I also manage the staff chamber music concerts, where various staff members get together to perform in small ensembles.”
David is also the Conservatorium’s school liaison, which entails talking to school principals about helping out with their music programs.
“We go into a dozen or so schools around the area to do various things, whether it’s private teaching or band programs or choirs,” he said.
“On top of that I teach at the conservatorium every afternoon and I teach at three schools as well, some of them are outside of my role here, so I teach about 60 students across all the schools and the conservatorium.
“It keeps me busy! Plus, I do a few other things as well. I work as an orchestral manager for the Orange Symphony Orchestra and I'm involved in the Orange Theatre Company quite a lot as well — we just put on the musical Rent — and so between all that I play and I teach and a I manage as much as I can.”