Susan Collins (…) plays these extraordinary scores with a remarkable sureness of touch, following even the most unexpected shifts in phrasing and expressive direction with micro-fine precision. Her warm, rich sound works wonders in bringing this music alive, enhanced by a generous, medium-paced vibrato and sensitivity to dynamic shading that comes as no surprise when one learns that her mentors have included the great Thomas Zehetmair.
The Strad, May 2009
At age 14, Susan performed Sarasate’s Zigeunerweissen with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Patrick Thomas at the Sydney Opera House. Since that time, she has performed as concert soloist and recitalist throughout Australia, the USA and Europe. Susan has recorded many times for ABC FM, and many other radio stations in live performance broadcasts as well as studio recorded recitals and has appeared numerous times in the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s Sunday Live series, performing as recitalist as well as in duo and trio combinations with Kingfisher Trio. Her CD with Duncan Gifford and Sue-Ellen Paulsen of Schumann’s complete Piano trios was released to critical acclaim by ABC Classics. More recently, Susan’s CD recording with pianist Stephanie McCallum of the violin and Piano works for Fritz Hart ‘We have waited a long time for recordings such as this and the wait has been worth it’ (Jonathan Woolf, Musicweb International 2019)
Having been appointed Deputy Concertmaster of the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra at the age of twenty-three, Susan has since been engaged as Concertmaster with many orchestras around Australia, performing under the baton of Bonynge, Macerras, Cillario, Hickox, Fiore, Young, de Waart and many other distinguished conductors.
Susan’s teachers and mentors have included Thomas Zehetmair, Yuval Yaron, Joseph Gingold and Alice Waten. She holds a DSCM from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, a Master of Music from Indiana University (Bloomington) and a Doctor of Creative Arts from the University of Wollongong.
In 2003 Susan was awarded the Australian Centenary Medal for her work with Opera and Ballet, and in 2009 was awarded an Australian College of Educators award.
Susan has held Head of Strings positions at the University of Tasmania and University of Newcastle conservatoria between 2006 and 2020. She is currently Music Director of the Riverina Summer School for Strings and Sounds of Summer festival, Artistic Director of the Nova Muse Festival in Penguin, Tasmania, and teaches violin at Queensland Conservatorium.
In recent years Susan has been featured in ‘Synesthesia’ and ‘Dark Mofo’ festivals presented by MONA, has performed as soloist with the TSO, and featured in Tasmania’s 2021 ‘Ten Days on the Island’ festival. In addition to solo engagements, Susan Co-directs the Battery Point Twilight Series, and has enjoyed the opportunity to perform with Southern Cross Soloists, Sydney Soloists and Ensemble Q.