String Ensembles

Band Training

The MHPS strings program provides an opportunity for Middle Harbour students of any age and varied ability to play string instruments in a group.

Our Aim

The Strings Program aims to provide a high standard of tuition and performance whilst instilling a life-long love of music in the children. We hope to give children confidence in their own abilities and to respect each other’s abilities. We focus very much on working as a group, with every member taking responsibility for their own part.

The Conductors


led by
Ms Lu Guo

Thursday at 7.45am to 8.45am
in MHPS School Hall

Lu started violin training at the age of 4. Before coming to Sydney, she received her Bachelor of Music (Violin Performance) degree from Xinghai Conservatory of Music and took up the role of Concertmaster of Xinghai Conservatorium Symphony Orchestra. In 2017, Lu earned her Master’s degree in Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Lu has been teaching violin and viola since 2007 and she is experienced in teaching students of all ages and they achieved great results under her tuition.


led by
Ms Dushanka Pizurica

Thursday at 7.45am to 8.45am
in MHPS School Hall

She attained her Bachelor Degree in Music Performance from the University of Arts, Montenegro (former Yugoslavia). After graduating, she moved to London where she worked as a school music teacher and a freelancer. She came to Sydney in 2011, where she continues her passion to be working as a violin teacher with children in schools around North Shore. Dushanka regularly performs with Willoughby Symphony Orchestra and is a member of various chamber groups.


led by
Mr Michael O’Dea

Friday at 7.45am to 8.45am
in MHPS School Library

Michael has played violin in the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra, Sydney, Adelaide and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras. He was also soloist with the Sydney Youth and Sydney Symphony Orchestras. He was Head of Strings at PLC, Sydney for the last 30 years, conducting the schools orchestras. His role included being Musical Director for the musicals as well as classroom teaching. Currently, Michael is conducting various small ensembles throughout Sydney.

The Structure of the Strings Program

The Strings Program is now divided into two sections of violin and cello to cater for different abilities and to balance the dynamics of the Strings Program. Each section will need strong players to lead the section and depending on the piece of music, the Conductor will ask the children to change sections/parts. Many of the accomplished violin players will then be able to play all sections.

Weekly Rehearsals

Senior String Ensemble – Rehearsals are every Friday at 7.45am to 8.45am in MHPS School Hall.
Junior & Beginner Strings – Rehearsals are every Thursday at 7.45am to 8.45am in MHPS School Library.

Children should arrive 5 mins early to tune up instruments and be ready to start the rehearsal promptly.


Prior to joining the Senior String Ensemble, the preference is students must be AMEB Grade 2 level. The preference for joining Junior Strings is for all children to be able to understand/read music and have some experience playing their chosen instrument. We recommend a term of private lessons before joining the group.  In conjunction with the Strings Program, your child will need to continue with private lessons too.  This normally will be either Suzuki or AMEB methods. A list of teachers is available upon request.


Most children in the Strings Program own their own instruments and often are looking to sell their old ones when they grow out of them. The school has a few violins and cellos, which subject to availability may be rented. (Contact the Strings Coordinator if interested).

We are ALWAYS excited to receive any second hand violin/ cello instruments from the school community to maintain a good supply of hire instruments. (Contact the Strings Coordinator).

Parent Roster

One parent will be nominated each week to attend the entirety of a rehearsal. If you are unable to be present on your rostered day, please find a replacement and inform the Coordinator. At each session the parent on duty organizes the children to set up, mark the attendance and help pack away.


As indicated this program is run entirely due to parents in the Strings
Program, (Coordinator), (Treasury), (Fundraising), (Classical Cocktails Event), (Music Festivals), (Music Camp & Music Workshop) and a Teacher from the school who acts as a Liaison for the Strings Program.

We ALWAYS need new volunteers as we only can run with the help of parents. (Contact the Strings Coordinator).


The fees include the Music Camp (usually held in May) and are quoted on a per annum basis. All fees are due in ADVANCE of commencing rehearsals.

If fees are not paid – your child will not be able to participate in the program.

Instrument Hire (subject to availability)

All Enquiries

Please contact the Strings Coordinator – Rachel Boden at

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