You’ve returned to Sydney after 16 years and are taking up a more dedicated role as Artistic Director at Pinchgut Opera. What do you hope to achieve there and elsewhere now that you’re a full-time creative?

I’ve been grateful for all the experience I’ve received in the university system for the last seven years, but it has not been without its challenges. I am in awe of my colleagues who can combine teaching with research and balance the demands of musicology with the demands of performance. I am reminded of Pierre Baillot, one of the first professors of the violin at the Paris Conservatoire. He found it difficult too. In 1805 he wrote, regretfully, “Quand on fait le métier il faut renoncer à l’art” (“When one takes up the profession [of teaching] you have to give up the art”). Unlike Baillot, who made teaching a central part of his later life, I’ve decided to pursue other avenues, at least for now. So although I’m doing some teaching for the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, I’ve decided to focus on my new dedicated role as Artistic Director of a thriving company that is spreading out in new directions. But I do want...

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