Conducting for ballet demands a very different set of skills from conducting orchestral music or opera, so after Nicolette Fraillon joined The Australian Ballet as Music Director and Chief Conductor, she started speaking with various music institutions about offering special training for conductors and pianists.

“But nobody was prepared or able to offer a course in tandem with us that would begin to educate young musicians in this art form,” she says. “So I thought, ‘OK, what we really need to do is start our own training program’. For the company’s 50th anniversary in 2012, the incredible Albert family, Robert Albert and his wife Libby, said, ‘Nicolette, what you would like to see for the 50th anniversary as Music Director of The Australian Ballet?’ I said that to encourage the development of young Australian musician in this art form we need two fellowships –  and that’s what they have supported miraculously ever since.”

Alexander Rodrigues

The Australian Ballet’s new Robert and Elizabeth Albert Conducting Fellow. Photo courtesy of The Australian Ballet

The Robert and Elizabeth Albert Fellowships support the development of conductors and pianists in the field of classical ballet. In August,...