The Queen’s Closet is comprised of instrumentalists and singers specialising in performance practice of 17th century Baroque music and using equipment appropriate to the 17th and very early 18th centuries.
ROWENA Simpson – soprano
Rowena Simpson grew up in Hamilton before moving to Wellington to study musicology and linguistics at Victoria University of Wellington. She performed with groups such as Five Go Baroque and The Pocket Opera before leaving for The Netherlands in 1997. At the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, she gained a master’s level degree in singing with a two year specialisation in baroque singing, and in 2002 she was a finalist in the Concours de Chant Baroque de Chimay. As a professional musician based in The Netherlands she performed roles in baroque operas and sang with many chamber music ensembles. She studied or worked with many HIP musicians including Michael Chance, Jill Feldman, Enrico Gatti, Richard Wistreich, Nigel North, Jed Wentz, Gabriel Garrido, Ton Koopman, Sigiswald Kuijken, William Christie, Philippe Herreweghe, and Nikolaus Harnoncourt.
Since returning to New Zealand in 2006, Rowena has performed for NZ Barok, Baroque Voices, NZ Opera, Days Bay Opera, Voices NZ, and Pinchgut Opera in Sydney. She collaborated with Erin Helyard, Emma Goodbehere and Kamala Bain on ‘A Baroque Dawn to Dusk’ for Chamber Music NZ, with Stroma on ‘The Mirror of Time’ series, and has toured with Hammers & Horsehair (Robert Ibell and Douglas Mews). Rowena’s interest in the social context of music also led to two shows written and directed by Jacqueline Coats, called ‘Home’ and ‘Lines from the Nile’. She takes every opportunity for professional development and in the field of HIP she has attended the Chamber Music NZ Nelson Bach Residency course with Masaaki Suzuki and Erin Helyard’s baroque ornamentation course at the NZ School of Music.
ANNA SEDCOLE – SOPRANO
Anna grew up in Christchurch, where she spent her formative years learning piano and violin, playing in competitions and orchestras and later singing in choirs, including the New Zealand Youth Choir, and Voices New Zealand. Recent musical highlights have included diverse projects such as singing as a soloist in a Bach Cantata in a service to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, to performing on the soundtrack for Hunt for the Wilderpeople, with members of Baroque Voices. Anna has a particular interest in early music; currently she sings regularly with Wellington-based early music ensembles The Tudor Consort and Baroque Voices. Anna is a Registered Music Therapist, running a busy private practice as well as leading several community singing groups.
Barbara Paterson – Soprano
Barbara Paterson has sung as a soloist for Stroma, Java Dance, the NZ Festival of the Arts, the CANZ annual Nelson workshops, Wanderlust Theatre, NZ Opera, the Audio Foundation, the Auckland Chamber Orchestra, Unstuck Opera, Eternity Opera, NIMBY Opera, CubaDupa, Avenue Opera, the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, Orchestra Wellington, The Queen’s Closet and as a soloist for choral societies around NZ. Barbara conducts the Capital Choir and she maintains a full teaching and performing schedule. Find her online at www.barbarapatersonmusic.com.
Andrea cochrane – Alto
Andrea’s main singing interests lie in ensemble work and early music. She holds a Bachelor of Music and a Diploma of Arts (focussing on early music performance) from Victoria University of Wellington.
Resident in Wellington, Andrea enjoys solo performances with local groups, mostly of Baroque repertoire. She is a member of flagship vocal ensembles Baroque Voices and The Tudor Consort, both of which perform a wide variety of music from different periods.
Andrea can also be seen and heard around New Zealand and the world singing with Voices New Zealand. When she is not singing, she works as an early childhood educator.
TOBY GEE – COUNTERTENOR
After a choral scholarship at Queens’ College, Cambridge, Toby sang as a lay clerk in Southwark Cathedral in London, and with many choirs, specialising in Renaissance and Baroque music, performing at latitudes ranging from Norway to New Zealand. He is the alto in the Wellington-based four-man a cappella vocal group Aurora IV.
Solo roles include Handel Messiah, Giulio Cesare, Solomon, Dardano in Amadigi, Didymus in Theodora, David in Saul; Bach’s B Minor Mass, St John Passion, Magnificat, Christmas Oratorio, Vivaldi Stabat Mater, Pergolesi Stabat Mater, some 50 Bach cantatas.
He has extensive experience of 20th century and contemporary music, including works by Arvo Pärt, John Tavener, Andrew Smith and Antonia Barnett-McIntosh. He was a soloist and conductor for Julian Allwood’s Charades at the Battersea Arts Centre Opera Festival in London.
Open-air impromptu performance locations include the South Patagonian Ice Cap, the highest summit of the Pyrenees, and diverse parts of the European Alps and Himalayas.
Rebecca Struthers – Violin
Born in Nelson, Rebecca Struthers won an Associated Board Scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Music in London. Afterwards she spent several years freelancing throughout Europe and the UK, returning home to join the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra in 1991. Rebecca leads Chiesa, an ensemble providing style-appropriate accompaniment to choirs in Wellington, and pursues a richly varied musical life that includes playing in contemporary ensemble Stroma and coaching young musicians. The Baroque violin journey began with lessons from Tafelmusik violinists and a Bach workshop with Maatsuki Suzuki. She performs on a restored 1730 Italian violin.
HyeWon Kim – Violin
Korean born New Zealander HyeWon Kim plays violin with major New Zealand orchestras as well as being a chamber musician, soloist and teacher.
HyeWon began her violin studies in Seoul at SunHwa Arts Conservatoire, continued her studies at the University of Auckland and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama – City of London University under David Takeno obtaining BMUS (Hons) and MMus degrees in violin performance.
While she was in the UK, HyeWon worked with BBC Philharmonic, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Halle, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia, London Mozart players and Southbank Sinfonia orchestras. Afterwards her journey continued to Japan, being a member of the Hyogo Performing Arts Center Orchestra.
Before coming to Wellington HyeWon lived in Spain working with Orquesta Sinfonica de Castilla y León , Orquesta de Cadaqués, Camerata XXI and BCN216 and is continuously invited to perform with them. HyeWon’s next tour will include Baden-Baden Festispiel hall series. She was a member of UBS Verbier festival orchestra Switzerland, Schleswig-Holstein festival orchestra Germany and Pacific Music Festival orchestra Japan.
Admires Jordi Savall and Hespèrion XXI, HyeWon’s violin was beautifully transformed to a Baroque one by Alan Clayton in Kelburn, Wellington.
Sophia Acheson – Viola
Sophia, from Christchurch, NZ, studied performance viola in Wellington with Donald Maurice where she graduated with first class honours. She was then invited to study in Barcelona with Ashan Pillai, violist with Pinchas Zukerman Chamber Players, and was subsequently awarded scholarships to study with Donald McInnes at the University of Southern California and later with Roger Myers at the University of Texas at Austin. During this period she furthered an interest in early music, learning the viola d’amore and viola da gamba, performing solo in the US at Berkeley and Evanston, and since her return to NZ, in Auckland.
In 2014 Sophia was appointed as principal violist of Orchestra Wellington. She has also enjoyed working with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Auckland Philharmonia and Dunedin Symphony as a freelance musician. In 2016 her string quartet Kiwa was awarded a regional tour through through Chamber Music New Zealand, and again in 2017 with her harp trio Toru.
Jane Young – Cello
Jane Young is a New Zealand cellist who grew up in Auckland, has studied and worked in England, Australia, Mexico and the United States and currently lives in Lower Hutt. She holds performance degrees from the University of Auckland and the University of Arizona and enjoys chamber music, teaching, and playing with Orchestra Wellington. Inspired by Canadian group Tafelmusik’s performance in Wellington in 2012, Jane has also begun exploring historically informed performance on the baroque cello and plays a beautiful old cello which has been ‘converted’ to baroque specifications by Auckland luthier Annette Voll. The cello is named Walter!
LACHLAN RADFORD – DOUBLE BASS
Lachlan Radford completed his BMus with first class honours at Auckland University in New Zealand. Following this he relocated to London in 2010 after accepting The Elman Poole Music Fellowship with Southbank Sinfonia. He returned to New Zealand permanently in 2019 and is now enjoying a busy freelance schedule based in Wellington.
Within his classical career Lachlan has worked with several world-class orchestras, including the BBC Concert Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, BBC Philharmonic, Metropole Orkest, the Philharmonia Orchestra, and New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. Lachlan was offered a permanent role with the Berkeley Ensemble in 2011, a significant highlight in his chamber and solo career.
Outside of the classical world Lachlan can be found working in other genres. His trio, More Like Trees, blend a fusion of flamenco and drum’n’bass on acoustic instruments and have played festivals across UK and Europe. In recent years he has also performed and recorded with award-winning artists such as DJ Yoda, Heritage Orchestra, Lazy Habits, MC Tali, and Reeps One.
Lachlan’s enthusiasm for passing on his musical experience to a younger generation is helped by his diverse and genre-defying background. He was Double Bass Professor in London at the Junior Guildhall of Music & Drama from 2012 – 2018. He continues to teach in both privately and at schools in Wellington.
Lachlan plays on a Jérôme Thibouville-Lamy bass and uses the Kaplan Medium Tension Strings by D’Addario as a D’Addario Orchestral Artist.
Sharon Lehany – Hoboy – recorder – Orchestra manager
Sharon is a versatile musician with a background in brass and woodwind playing. At university in the Unites States she divided her time as a musician, playing oboe in the Mason Gross School of the Arts wind ensemble, and mellophone in the Rutgers University marching band. A Fulbright scholar, she completed a PhD in genetics at Trinity College Cambridge, UK, before moving to New Zealand. Since moving to Wellington she played primarily brass, including winning NZ championships with Wellington Brass on three occasions, and played freelance trumpet in Wellington. Sharon has returned to her roots as a double-reed player, specialising in Hoboy (‘Baroque Oboe’). Her instrument is a faithful replica of a c. 1690 hoboy by Richard Haka, made by Lucas van Helsdingen. She is one of very few hoboy players around the world playing exclusively with historically plausible 17th century reeds and early baroque short fingerings, working with Lucas van Helsdingen in Amsterdam on these techniques. Sharon is currently undertaking a PhD at the NZ School of Music under the supervision of Professor Samantha Owens, on an experimental exploration of historically plausible 17th century hoboy reeds. She also studies other aspects of early and late baroque and hoboy performance practice with Oliver Webber and Marianne Pfau.
REBECCA GRIMWOOD – HOBOY
Rebecca completed her undergraduate studies in flute and oboe at the University of Auckland, under the tutelage of Luca Manghi and Alison Jepson. Following this, Rebecca performed with a variety of musical groups and ensembles around Auckland, while teaching flute and oboe both in schools and privately.
After completing a Masters degree in Sociology in 2019, Rebecca moved to Wellington in 2020 to work in the public sector. Keen to remain active in the music community, she was introduced to the hoboy and is greatly enjoying playing baroque music and learning the intricacies of the instrument.
In her spare time, Rebecca enjoys watching and reading sci-fi, spoiling her two cats, and felting small animals.
SAMANTHA OWENS – HOBOY – HISTORICAL ADVISOR
Samantha Owens is an historical musicologist who studied modern oboe with Ross and Susan McKeich in Christchurch, prior to completing a BMus degree in oboe performance under the tutelage of Ronald Webb and Luigi Ferletti (New Zealand Symphony Orchestra). Having been introduced to baroque performance by Peter Walls while studying at Victoria University of Wellington, she subsequently took hautboy lessons with Bruce Haynes (Montreal), Michel Henry (Paris) and Alfredo Bernardini (Amsterdam) and has performed professionally with period bands in both New Zealand and Australia. In 2015, Sam returned to Wellington following fourteen years employed at the University of Queensland in Brisbane. She is currently Professor of Musicology at Victoria University, where her research centres on seventeenth- and eighteenth-century German and British court music, and the reception of German music and musicians in Australasia, 1850–1950. Recent publications have included a monograph, The Well-Travelled Musician: John Sigismond Cousser and Musical Exchange in Baroque Europe(Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell Press, 2017) and two edited books, J. S. Bach in Australia: Studies in Reception and Performance, with Kerry Murphy and Denis Collins (Melbourne: Lyrebird Press, 2018) and Searches for Tradition: Essays on New Zealand Music, Past & Present, with Michael Brown (Wellington: VUP, 2017). A Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities since 2012, Sam has also held visiting fellowships at the Herzog August Bibliothek in Wolfenbüttel (2004), Clare Hall, University of Cambridge (2007–2008), and – as an Alexander von Humboldt Fellow – at both the Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg (2009–2010) and the Bach-Archiv Leipzig (2018).
Gordon Lehany – Natural Trumpet, natural horn and recorder – artistic director
Gordon plays natural trumpet & horn, recorder and violin, focusing on period performance of early music. He began playing violin & viola at the age of 7, performing baroque concerti as a teenager. He then moved on to brass, including performing as trumpet soloist in Brandenburg 2 with Sospiro Baroque in Edinburgh in 2010 and 2013. He’s also played cornet at the highest levels of brass banding with Whitburn Brass Band & Wellington Brass. In addition to playing with The Queen’s Closet 2020 was a busy year, including playing trumpet & horn in NZ Opera’s period instrument production of Semele in October.
As founder of The Queen’s Closet, Gordon drives its Restoration-based ethos & identity, colourful and vibrant character, and focus on historical performance practice.
Gordon studies natural trumpet and horn with Mike Diprose and Julian Zimmermann. To keep at the cutting edge as Artistic Director, Gordon also studies baroque violin and wider historical performance practice with Oliver Webber.
Academically he undertook a three year research project into mental illness, historicism and the interpretation of the music of Robert Schumann, in collaboration with researchers at Edinburgh University, presenting the findings at the International Conference of the Royal College of Psychiatrists (UK) in 2010. He is currently studying for an MA in Music with the UK’s Open University focussing on period performance research.
He plays on a hand made Ehe III model natural trumpet by David Staff with mouthpieces by Julian Zimmermann and Nikolai Mantaari, natural horn after Buchschwinder by Lowell Greer and recorders by Joachim Rohmer, Hans Neuwland and Moeck. He also plays on a copy of a violin by Tielke (1685) made by David Rubio.
Peter reid – natural Trumpet, natural horn and cornetto
Peter Reid plays trumpet for Bach Musica and freelances with other Auckland orchestras and ensembles. He studied music at Auckland University then the Trinity College of Music in London and subsequently performed in the UK and Europe.
He specialises in the period instruments – the cornetto and the baroque trumpet, which have enabled him to travel beyond his base in Auckland to perform with La Compania and Academia Arcadia in Melbourne and Australian Baroque Brass in Sydney. He particularly enjoys the interaction and intimacy of small ensemble music and has toured twice with Chamber Music New Zealand. He is a founding member of the ensemble Affetto, formed in 2010, their debut CD ‘Affetto’released Sept 2017.
In 2019 Peter played with Renaissance dance troupe Capriol in Auckland in May, with The Queen’s Closet in Wellington in June, touring with NZ Barok with their ground-breaking Baby Baroque productions, Monteverdi’s Vespers in September with Ludovico’s Band in Melbourne, and a new Affetto programme ‘The Other Four Seasons’ in September with baritone Will King.
Chris Woolley – Natural trumpet
Chris studied classical trumpet at the University of Canterbury and the New Zealand School of Music, and during this time was introduced to historically informed performance and the natural trumpet. Over the years, he has performed with a number of orchestras and ensembles around New Zealand. Chris joined The Queen’s Closet after taking a break from playing to complete further study. He is enjoying the challenges of ventless natural trumpet and exploring the Restoration repertoire.
Craig Bradfield – Baroque bassoon
Craig began his performance study on modern bassoon at the Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne with Genardy Bergaslavsky and Harold Evans. In the seventeen years spent in Melbourne, he performed with many orchestras including the State Orchestra of Victoria, Tasmanian Symphony, Australian Philharmonic and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.
Forever the student, Craig’s further studies have included lessons with the late William Waterhouse (BBC Symphony), Zoltan Harzanyi (Budapest Symphony) and Ole-Kristian Dahl (Oslo Philharmonic). He is currently in the doctoral program at Waikato University, majoring in baroque bassoon under the tutelage of Lyndon Watts in Melbourne and has had lessons from the great Italian bassoonist Alberto Grazzi.
Before returning to New Zealand Craig lived in Malaysia and Israel performing and teaching and on his return home has been busy freelancing with many orchestras and chamber groups around New Zealand. On baroque bassoon he performs with Vox Baroque and NZ Barok.
Craig plays on a wonderful replica of a Johann Poerschman (c. 1680-1757) designed instrument, made by the New Zealand born, London based instrument maker, Mathew Dart.
peter Maunder – Guitar, sackbut and recorder
Peter has had extensive experience as a symphonic trombonist with major orchestras in the UK and in New Zealand as a member of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Wellington. He has also been involved in Brass bands at the highest level in the UK and New Zealand as a player, conductor and arranger. Peter has also performed with Yorkshire Baroque Soloists and Ex Cathedra in the UK and in Wellington the Tudor Consort and more recently Eternity Opera’s “Orfeo” playing sackbuts and recorders.
Kris Zuelicke – harpsichord
Kristina Zuelicke was raised in the United States and has been performing and teaching music in New Zealand since moving here from Germany in 2003. Kris holds degrees in music from Miami University as well as Indiana University and recently graduated from the New Zealand School of Music with a Doctor of Musical Arts in Harpsichord Performance, supervised by Douglas Mews, Samantha Owens, Erin Helyard and Peter Walls. Study grants, including the Freemasons Lankhuyzen/Whetu-Kairangi and Therle Drake scholarships, enabled her to study for two summers in Boston with Mark Kroll.
Kris enjoys performing both early and contemporary music for harpsichord, such as a work by Lutoslawski for a recent Stroma concert. Ongoing research on the revival harpsichord has led to academic papers on the subject, including one given at the 2018 New Zealand Musicological Society Conference.
Laurence reeSe – percussion
American-born timpanist and percussionist Laurence Reese is a graduate of The Juilliard School in New York and The Royal College of Music in London. He has been the Section Principal Timpanist of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra since 1998. His interest in early music was sparked by a live performance in the early ’80s of Michael Praetorius’ Terpsichore, leading to a haphazard and never-ending pursuit of the performance traditions of percussion and timpani in the Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque periods. Larry has a small but ever-growing collection of original and period-correct kettledrums and hand percussion instruments.
SAM RICH – Percussion
Sam Rich began his musical studies at the age of six with Judy Stokes in percussion and later with Glen Rodgers in drum kit and Scottish pipe band drumming. He went on to receive a Bachelor of Music from The University of Auckland where he studied with Eric Renick, and a further Bachelor of Music with Honours at Victoria University of Wellington with Leonard Sakofsky and fellow QC member Laurence Reese. During this period he was awarded first place at the 2014 Melbourne Snare Award, performed as a soloist with the Auckland Philharmonia, and was a fellow at the Music Academy of the West summer festival (USA).
In 2017, Sam was awarded the Kiwi Music and Patricia Pratt Scholarships to study at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music under the guidance of Jacob Nissly, where he graduated with a Masters of Music with 1st Class Honours.
Sam currently serves as the Sub-Principal Percussionist for the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. He has performed with a variety of ensembles including the San Francisco Symphony, Auckland Philharmonia, Stroma New Music Ensemble, and Orchestra Wellington, of which he formerly held the Principal Timpani position.