Due to the increased risk to members of the public during concert events, it is with regret that Steel City Strings has decided to cancel the concert ‘Composer in the Room’.

We thank all of you for helping to support our ensemble and hope to reschedule the concert for later in the year. All tickets purchased through Trybooking will be refunded. Please email SCS with any questions: steelcitystrings@gmail.com

Steel City Strings in 2020

In 2020 we are celebrating our region with three great programs. 

We kick off in March with the world premiere of a new work by Elena Kats-Chernin, who was voted favourite Australian composer in ABC’s countdown, along with favourite local composers. (CANCELLED).

In June we feature celebrated didgeridoo performer William Barton and local Indigenous musicians and composers.

In September we return to our “brand” as a classical chamber orchestra with Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons” performed by brilliant young soloist Emily Sun, bookended by JS Bach and an Australian composition.

Richard Gill's memoir Give Me Excess of It


"​....the members of Steel City Strings are outstanding examples of hard work, enterprise, enthusiasm and dedication. They reach for the stars and beyond. More power to these wonderful people."

Richard Gill AO
​Conductor ​& Australia’s greatest music educator



Having won the 2019 APRA National Award for Excellence in a Regional Area, in 2020 Steel City Strings will continue to enrich our regional communities with the transformative power of live music.

Series 1: The Composer is in the Room

Sun 29 March 2pm, Nowra School of Arts – Book Now
Sat 4 April 7.30pm, Wollongong Town Hall – ​Book Now
Sun 5 April 2pm, Bowral Memorial Hall – Book Now

Features the world premiere of a new work by Elena Kats-Chernin who was voted number one favourite Australian composer in the recent ABC Favourite Composers countdown.

It is a great honour for our region to premiere this work, which was commissioned by a local philanthropist specifically to be presented in our region by Steel City Strings.

Other Australian works, by Ann Carr-Boyd, Andrew Ford, Moya Henderson, Matthew Hindson and Frederick Septimus Kelly, have also been chosen for their audience appeal.

Elena Kats-Chernin - The Composer Is In The Room

Series 2: Earth Connections

Sun 21 June 2pm, Bowral Memorial Hall – Book Now
Sat 27 June 7.30pm, Wollongong Town Hall – Bookings open May 2020
Sun 28 June 2pm, Berry School of Arts – Book Now

Features William Barton, widely recognised as Australia’s finest didgeridoo player.

William says "I want to take the oldest culture in the world and blend it with Europe's rich musical legacy.” 

Steel City Strings will reach out to William, his friends, and local Indigenous artists in a program of shared creations.

William Barton - Earth Connections

Series 3: Seasons

Sun 13 September 2pm, Burrawang School of Arts – Book Now
Sat 19 September 7.30pm, Wollongong Town Hall – Bookings open Aug 2020
Sun 20 September 2pm, Berry School of Arts – Book Now

With Seasons, Steel City Strings returns to its “brand” identity as a classical local Chamber orchestra that earned us our 2019 APRA National Art Music Award for “Excellence in a Regional Area and Commitment to Performing Australian Music”.

Vivaldi’s Four Seasons will be bookended by works by JS Bach and an Australian composition. 

Featuring brilliant young violinist Emily Sun, 2018 ABC Australian Young Musician of the Year and multi international prize-winner.

Emily Sun performs Seasons with the SCS

"Music Education does not just make children more musical; it unleashes their creative powers."

Richard Gill, AO
Legendary conductor, teacher and tireless advocate for music education in Australia

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Kyle Little
Artistic Director/Concert Master - Orchestra
Karella Mitchell
Principal Cello - Orchestra
Jacob Antonio
Principal Violin - Orchestra
Adrian Davis
Principal Viola - Orchestra
Luke Spicer
Conductor - Orchestra


Steel City Strings (SCS) is a vibrant​ string orchestra showcasing the professional talents of players from the Illawarra and Shoalhaven Region. ​The orchestra provides an important platform:

  • for local musicians to come together to play exciting music
  • to inspire young local string players
  • to feature local soloists
  • to support and showcase talented Australian composers

Concerts have featured compositions by Australian composers Carr-Boyd, Sculthorpe, Ford and Grainger as well as local composers Michael Barkl and Adrian Whitehall. The orchestra also features the talents of exceptional local solo musicians.

Mentoring and developing young local players through coaching and providing opportunities to play and perform with the orchestra is an integral part of our strategy for developing the orchestra and its members.

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The orchestra's most recent performance in Kiama last Sunday presented a fascinating program of works from various musical periods, beginning in the Baroque era with Locatelli's delightful Christmas concerto followed by the effervescent Divertimento in F major by Mozart. In these works, the orchestra played with a strong sense of ensemble, and brought an infectious verve to the Mozart.


In Debussy's Sacred and Profane Dances of 1904 the orchestra was joined by harpist Paulina Smirnov whose scintillating playing created a wonderful and subtly-nuanced centrepiece for the concert.