Gyula Cseszkó – Music Director
In August 2022, Gyula Cseszkó was appointed Music Director of the Maroondah Symphony Orchestra for 2023.
This experienced Conductor, Artistic Director, Music Educator and Adjudicator has had a career hallmarked with excellence for over twenty years, having conducted over forty orchestras and eight choirs.
Born of Hungarian-Dutch parents in Adelaide, Gyula studied Viola with John Gould, Glynne Adams and Keith Crellin and received a Master of Music in conducting from Melbourne University in 2003, studying under Professor John Hopkins OBE. He has also studied with conductors Denis Vaughan, Nicholas Braithwaite, Shalom Ronly-Riklis, Carlo Felice Cillario and Carl Crossin OAM.
He founded and was Chief Conductor/Artistic Director of La Fraternita di Solisti, his own professional chamber orchestra, for five years. He has also served as Conductor of the Ballarat Symphony Orchestra, as founding Conductor of the Melbourne University Biomedical Orchestra, and has conducted the Hawthorn U3A Orchestra for over eleven years, for the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Orchestra (on tour in China as Assistant conductor), the Melbourne University Symphony Orchestra, and guested for the Zelman Memorial Symphony Orchestra, Melbourne Lawyers and Barrier Reef Orchestras, and Monash Medical Orchestra these last two years.
Willem van der Vis was Music Director of the Maroondah Symphony Orchestra for 29 years until 2022. During this time he greatly developed the orchestra’s skills and expanded its repertoire and in doing so has enhanced the Orchestra’s reputation within the community. We are looking forward to his return to conduct our September 2023 concerts.
New Zealand born Willem gained a BSc (Hons) in physics before he decided to focus on his real passion, which was music. Soon he was playing principal cello with the Scolar Musica (New Zealand Symphony Training Orchestra) and the Dunedin Sinfonia.
In 1979 he moved to Australia, where he became a member of the West Australian Symphony Orchestra for 7 years. In addition he has played with Orchestra Victoria and the New Zealand, Tasmanian and Melbourne Symphony Orchestras. As an orchestral cellist, he was always fascinated by how a conductor interacted with and communicated music to an orchestra and this led him to complete his BMus (conducting) at the WAAPA and the VCA (Robert Rosen). Conducting studies followed in Moscow, England and the Czech Republic. He enjoyed further studies with Professor John Hopkins in Melbourne.
Willem has conducted the Stonnington, Heidelberg, New Monash, Ballarat and Derwent (Hobart) Symphony Orchestras as well as the Maroondah Symphony Orchestra. In addition, he has conducted the Murray Conservatorium Chamber Orchestra and Choral Society (Albury, NSW), Two Murray River “Three Choirs” Festivals, Percy Grainger Youth Orchestra, Margaret Sutherland Strings as well as many stage shows.
Every year Willem conducts at orchestral workshops and music camps around Australia. Willem is also in demand as an adjudicator and holds workshops in orchestral conducting.