December 5th, 2020, Saturday



  • 10.00 AM
    Evangelos Kara Karavitis | Moonstone Music Publications, Melbourne
    The Art of Phillip Houghton… Myth and The Muse
  • 11.15 AM
    Dr Melissa Fitzgerald | The University of Western Australia, Perth
    Nigel Westlake – Life and Guitar Music
    Platforma ZOOM
  • 11.45 AM
    Dr Jonathan Fitzgerald | The University of Western Australia, Perth
    Australian Guitar Music in the 20th and 21st centuries
    Platforma ZOOM
  • 13.00 PM
    • concert program click



Evangelos Kara Karavitis Evangelos (Kara) Karavitis was closest of friends with Phillip Houghton for over 40 years. In 1990 they founded Moonstone Music Publications to publish Phillip Houghton’s works. In 1989 Houghton wrote and dedicated his composition Stele to Kara Karavitis. Kara has premiered several of Phil’s compositions including, Kinkachoo…I love You, The Melting Snowman and the original Six Trios.
Kara describes himself as a kitchen guitarist and is humbled by having had such an extraordinary piece (Stele) written for him.



Melissa Fitzgerald Dr Melissa Fitzgerald’s “sleek, polished perfection,” coupled with “passion and drive” has seen her performing regularly as a soloist and chamber musician. Highlights include performances for the Perth International Classical Guitar Festival, Classical Guitar Society of WA, Edith Cowan University, the Heart Foundation, the Commonwealth Bank, and appearances on RTRFM’s guitar show and ABC Great Southern. Her prowess as a performer has been recognised through several awards and competitions. Notably, Melissa was a finalist in WAAPA’s 2013 Warana Concerto Competition, where she performed Leo Brouwer’s Concerto Elegiaco with the University’s Faith Court Orchestra.
In 2017 she graduated from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts with her PhD thesis, Bridging the Great Divide: An Exploration of Postmodernism in the Guitar Music of Nigel Westlake.
Melissa also undertook her undergraduate studies at WAAPA under the guidance of Dr Jonathan Paget. She completed her Bachelor of Music in 2010 and was selected as a finalist for the Helen Court Award for most outstanding graduating music student. In 2011 she received First Class Honours for her dissertation titled Minimalism and the Guitar.
While completing her undergraduate degrees, Melissa regularly participated in masterclasses with renowned Australian guitarists, Slava Grigoryan, Karin Schaupp, Timothy Kain, and Tonié Field. Masterclasses with visiting artists have included the Z.o.o. Duo, the Australian Guitar Duo, and Johannes Möller. She also travelled to the United States to take lessons from Jason Vieaux (Cleveland Institute of Music), Ben Verdery (Yale) and Nicholas Goluses (Eastman School of Music).
A love of performing chamber music led her to create the Perth Guitar Quartet in 2013. The group gave its debut performance at her PhD recital. They have since become Perth’s premier professional guitar quartet and have performed at the 2018 Perth International Classical Guitar Festival; toured the WA Great Southern region; and have given recitals for the Classical Guitar Society of WA, the National Trust of Western Australia, Cappuccino Concerts, North Street Music’s Chamber Jam, the Fulbright Commission, and many corporate functions.
Currently, Melissa is a sessional staff member at the UWA Conservatorium of Music, where she assists with guitar chamber music. Additionally, she maintains a full studio at Trinity College in East Perth, Mercedes College in Perth, and Seton Catholic College in Samson.
Melissa plays a 2011 Paul Sheridan guitar.



Jonathan Fitzgerald Praised for his “impeccable tone” and performances filled “with passion from the start to the end,” American-born Australian classical guitarist Dr Jonathan Fitzgerald has garnered international recognition as a performer and educator. Maintaining a career at the intersection of performance, teaching and artistic research, Jonathan heads the guitar program at the University of Western Australia’s Conservatorium of Music, where he oversees one of the most active guitar studios in the country.
Jonathan’s artistic interests are diverse, ranging from traditional classical guitar repertoire to immersive multimedia works for electric guitar, electronics and visual projections. Past projects include a residency at the National Trust of Western Australia, funded by a major grant from the Department of Culture and the Arts. The residency culminated in two sold-out concerts at the historic East Perth Cemeteries, featuring a world premiere performance of a work commissioned by the Trust. Entitled “Sound from the Ground,” the project won the Museums and Galleries National Award for Interpretation, Learning & Audience Engagement, and was a finalist for the 2017 WA State Heritage Award.
Past concert highlights include performances with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra, West Australian Opera (Verdi’s Otello), radio performances for ABC Radio National, RTRFM, WXXI and WCNY, and solo concerts for the Classical Guitar Society of Western Australia, Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, the Musicales Concert Series, and Valley Manor Concert Series, among others. His playing has been recognized through numerous awards, including the Great Lakes International Guitar Competition in which he was a prize-winning finalist and winner of the “Audience Choice” award.
A recipient of the Jack L. Frank Award for Excellence in Teaching, FABLE Award for Excellence in Teaching, UWA Award for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning, and three-time recipient of the UWA Student Guild Students’ Choice Award, Jonathan is a dedicated instructor with fifteen years of teaching experience at the primary, secondary, and tertiary levels. Currently he serves as Chair of Guitar and teaches Music Language (Harmony & Aural) at the University of Western Australia. He has also taught the History and Literature of the Guitar, Guitar Pedagogy, and Fretboard Harmony at the Eastman School of Music, and Dalcroze Eurhythmics at the Fairmount Center for the Creative and Performing Arts. Previous teaching appointments include the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts, Roberts Wesleyan University, the Eastman Community Music School, and the Cleveland Music School Settlement, among others. An active clinician, he has presented workshops, masterclasses and lectures across the United States and Australia.
Jonathan received his formal education in the United States, studying with some of the world’s foremost musicians. He had the privilege of learning under classical guitar virtuoso and Grammy Award winner Jason Vieaux while earning Bachelor and Master of Music degrees at the Cleveland Institute of Music. During his doctoral studies at the Eastman School of Music, Jonathan studied classical guitar with Dr Nicholas Goluses, historical performance practice with world renowned lutenist Paul O’Dette, and music theory pedagogy with Dr Steven Laitz. Jonathan considers it an honour and a responsibility to carry on, with his own students, the legacy of the teachers who have so profoundly shaped him as a musician.
Jonathan performs on a spruce/cedar “double-top” guitar by Gernot Wagner.


Guitar Seminar