Flinders Quartet is
Shane Chen (violin) Nicholas Waters (violin)
Helen Ireland (viola) Zoe Knighton (cello)
Shane burst onto the Australian music scene fresh from the Australian National Academy of Music (ANAM) as a string finalist in the 2012 Symphony Australia Young Performer Award competition and finalist in the ANAM concerto competition. During his two years of study (2011 – 2012) at ANAM under William Hennessey, Shane became a very active chamber music player and has performed in various chamber music series including Australian Voices, Melbourne Festival Quarttehaus and TSO Beethoven Festival recital series. Shane has appeared as soloist with Adelaide Symphony Orhcestra, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Melbourne Chamber Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria. He is currently a core member of the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra and regular guest with Orchestra Victoria.
Nicholas completed his Bachelor of Music in 2012 at Melbourne Conservatorium of Music. In 2013 he commenced studies at the Australian National Academy of Music with Adam Chalabi whilst also participating in the Sydney Symphony Sinfonia, where he was awarded the inaugural Joan McKenzie Emerging Artist award.
In 2014, as a Fellow with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Nicholas toured to China, performed chamber music concerts throughout New South Wales and was featured in the Digital Masterclass Series with Andrew Haveron on YouTube. Also during 2014 Nicholas performed as a guest artist with Wilma and Friends. In 2015 he performed as a core player in Affinity Collective’s Open Rehearsals and Ballantyne Chamber Music Concert Series in Melbourne.
Nicholas has performed as a casual musician with the Sydney Symphony and Orchestra Victoria and in masterclasses with Dale Barltrop, Stanley Dodds, James Ehnes, Stefan Jackiw, Anthony Marwood, Natsuko Yoshimoto and the Tokyo and Tinalley String Quartets.
He is currently studying violin with Robin Wilson and Sophie Rowell at the Australian National Academy of Music and is a finalist in the Kendall Violin Competition. In 2016 Nicholas will take part in the ACO’s Emerging Artist Program.
Originally from Adelaide, Helen has made Melbourne her home since moving in 2000 to attend the Australian National Academy of Music. Helen is also a core member of the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra and teaches viola at Melbourne University. A graduate of the Canberra School of Music, Helen was awarded the Erica Haas prize for chamber music. She participated in several Australian Youth Orchestra tours, becoming principal viola of the Camerata in 1998. In 1996, Helen was a finalist in the viola competition at the International Winter School for Strings. Helen has worked with many leading Australian orchestras, including the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra and the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra. She plays regularly with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria where she has been guest principal and associate principal. Helen is qualified as a Feldenkrais practitioner and looks forward to helping other musicians with this work.
Helen is a founding member of Flinders Quartet.
After starting cello at the age of nine with Jill Kahans, and graduating from the University of Melbourne with the highest mark of her year, Zoe went on to establish herself as one of the country’s most sought after cellists. Having studied with Christian Wojtowicz, Michel Strauss (Paris), Nelson Cooke, and Angela Seargeant, she has continued this legacy by teaching at The University of Melbourne, Victorian College of the Arts, Monash University, The University of Tasmania, The Australian Youth Orchestra, The Victorian Amateur Chamber Music Society, as well as other masterclasses and workshops.
Zoe has played numerous concertos with Melbourne orchestras, and with pianist Amir Farid made an impressive debut at the Melbourne Recital Centre to great critical acclaim in 2009. Their partnership continues with recordings for ABC, concerts throughout Australia and the release of five CDs on the MOVE label. She has been praised for her “thrilling tenor sound” (Limelight Magazine), “sublime phrasing”, and “many great technical demands which Knighton carried off with ease.”
Zoe continues to freelance with Melbourne’s orchestras and is a regular panelist for national and international competitions.
Zoe is a founding member of Flinders Quartet.