About the Flinders Quartet


                               Flinders portraits


The Flinders Quartet is one of Australia’s most loved chamber music ensembles. For over twenty-two years, both Australian and overseas audiences have enjoyed the quartet’s fine ensemble work and the outstanding musicianship of each of its members.

The members of the Flinders Quartet combine extensive experience, intelligence and sensitivity to powerful effect in their music. They are tireless performers, with touring commitments, recordings, educational projects and the commissioning of new works. In this concert they are joined by Miki Tsunoda, a young violinist who combines a successful orchestral career in Europe with a passion for chamber music performance. 

Miki Tsunodo bio

Miki Tsunoda  (guest violin) studied with renowned pedagogue, Lorand Fenyves at the University of Toronto as well as with Ferenc Halasz and received extensive training in Chamber Music with Andras Mihaly, Gyorgy Kurtag and Ferenc Rados at the Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest. Later at the Banff Centre for the Arts in Canada, Miki worked closely with David Takeno and the late Zoltan Szekely. 

Having founded the Binneas String Quartet during her years at the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School, her early experiences instilled in her a passion for chamber music and the importance of communication and self-expression. 

The formation of Duo Sol in 1998 was a natural progression of her desire to continue to develop through close chamber music partnerships. Together with pianist Caroline Almonte, Duo Sol has been praised for their passionate and committed performances, receiving critical acclaim. In 2011 Duo Sol made their debut recital at the International Edinburgh Festival and in 2005 represented Australian Culture and the Arts at the World Expo in Aichi, Japan and were ambassadors at the 35th Celebration of Diplomatic Relations between Australia and China in Beijing. Duo Sol has released two ABC Classics recordings titled “Duo Tsunoda/Almonte” and “Infinite Heartbeat”. 

Miki has collaborated with many of the world’s renowned musicians and ensembles including the late Hiroyuki Iwaki, Philippe Herreweghe, Jaap van Zweden, Xian Zhang, Tadaaki Otaka, Eivind Aadland, Brett Dean, Piers Lane, Li Wei Qin, Claire Edwardes, Het Collectief, Ensemble Offspring and Elision. She has performed on numerous occasions with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra as well as with the Sendai Philharmonic, Ensemble Kanazawa, Kyoto Symphony and Nagoya Philharmonic. 

Since 2008 Miki has held the position of Principal Second Violin with the Royal Flemish Philharmonic Orchestra in Antwerp, and in addition performs with the Amsterdam Sinfonietta and Australian World Orchestra.

 Nicholas Waters Bio

Nicholas Waters (violin)  completed his Bachelor of Music in 2012 at Melbourne Conservatorium of Music. In 2013 he commenced studies at the Australian National Academy of Music with Adam Chalabi whilst also participating in the Sydney Symphony Sinfonia, where he was awarded the inaugural Joan McKenzie Emerging Artist award. 

In 2014, as a Fellow with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Nicholas toured to China, performed chamber music concerts throughout New South Wales and was featured in the Digital Masterclass Series with Andrew Haveron on YouTube. Also during 2014 Nicholas performed as a guest artist with Wilma and Friends. In 2015 he performed as a core player in Affinity Collective’s Open Rehearsals and Ballantyne Chamber Music Concert Series in Melbourne.

Nicholas has performed as a casual musician with the Sydney Symphony and Orchestra Victoria and in masterclasses with Dale Barltrop, Stanley Dodds, James Ehnes, Stefan Jackiw, Anthony Marwood, Natsuko Yoshimoto and the Tokyo and Tinalley String Quartets. 

He studied violin with Robin Wilson and Sophie Rowell at the Australian National Academy of Music and was a finalist in the Kendall Violin Competition. In 2016 Nicholas took part in the ACO’s Emerging Artist Program.

Photo credit: Agatha Yim


Helen Ireland Bio

Helen Ireland (viola) Originally from Adelaide, Helen has made Melbourne her home since moving in 2000 to attend the Australian National Academy of Music. Helen is also a core member of the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra and teaches viola at Melbourne University. A graduate of the Canberra School of Music, Helen was awarded the Erica Haas prize for chamber music. She participated in several Australian Youth Orchestra tours, becoming principal viola of the Camerata in 1998. In 1996, Helen was a finalist in the viola competition at the International Winter School for Strings.  Helen has worked with many leading Australian orchestras, including the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra and the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra. She plays regularly with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria where she has been guest principal and associate principal.  Helen is qualified as a Feldenkrais practitioner and looks forward to helping other musicians with this work.

Helen is a founding member of Flinders Quartet.

Photo credit: Agatha Yim

Zoe Knighton Bio

Zoe Knighton ('cello). After starting cello at the age of nine with Jill Kahans, and graduating from the University of Melbourne with the highest mark of her year, Zoe went on to establish herself as one of the country’s most sought after cellists. Having studied with Christian Wojtowicz, Michel Strauss (Paris), Nelson Cooke, and Angela Seargeant, she has continued this legacy by teaching at The University of Melbourne, Victorian College of the Arts, Monash University, The University of Tasmania, The Australian Youth Orchestra, The Victorian Amateur Chamber Music Society, as well as other masterclasses and workshops.

Zoe has played numerous concertos with Melbourne orchestras, and with pianist Amir Farid made an impressive debut at the Melbourne Recital Centre to great critical acclaim in 2009. Their partnership continues with recordings for ABC, concerts throughout Australia and the release of five CDs on the MOVE label. She has been praised for her “thrilling tenor sound” (Limelight Magazine), “sublime phrasing”, and “many great technical demands which Knighton carried off with ease.”

Zoe continues to freelance with Melbourne’s orchestras and is a regular panelist for national and international competitions.

Zoe is a founding member of Flinders Quartet.

Photo credit: Agatha Yim