Welcome to Gondwana Online for 2021!

  • All class times are in Australian Eastern Standard Time, unless otherwise stated.
  • If all classes for a subject are full, a waitlist option will appear. Further classes may be added depending on demand, presenter availability and Gondwana Choirs’ discretion.
  • Each class requires a minimum number of students to go ahead. If that minimum fails to be reached all enrollees will be contacted and refunded directly.
  • If you have any questions about Gondwana Online please contact Sarah Thomas via email on sarah.thomas@gondwana.org.au
  • Gondwana Choirs is a Child Safe organisation. Read our policy here.
  • Gondwana Online is delivered via Slack and Zoom. Instructions will be sent via email after purchase, with tech support available.
  • Successful participation in this interactive learning program requires reliable internet access.

An Australian singing adventure for children based in the United States of America and Canada

with Elizabeth Vierboom

Session time: Saturdays at 5pm EST / Saturdays at 2pm PST

Session dates: Saturday 1 May, Saturday 8 May, Saturday 15 May, Saturday 22 May, Saturday 29 May and Saturday 5 June (6 sessions total)

Session duration: 45 minutes – 1 hour

Suitable for children aged 6 -12 years.

Cost: AUD$160 + booking fee, per child

Join Elizabeth Vierboom on a singing adventure around Australia. Across a 6 session fun filled adventure we will sing Australian songs, explore different parts of the country, learn a little about Indigenous culture, and make new friends.

The course is designed for young Australians living in the USA and Canada, but of course non-Australian friends are also welcome.


About Elizabeth Vierboom

Elizabeth Vierboom studied music at the NSW Conservatorium of Music and the University of Sydney majoring in the violin and pipe organ.  Having played and toured with the Australian Youth Orchestra and the Sydney Youth Orchestra, Elizabeth then turned to teaching high school and primary music and further developing her interest in choral music. This dates back to her high school choir conductor, Richard Gill, whose energy and love of singing was infectious.

She has long championed the performance of Australian choral music and has been responsible for the commissioning of many new works for young choirs by emerging and established Australian composers. As an educator, Elizabeth Vierboom is recognised for the enthusiasm she kindles in young musicians and the passion she arouses in students to develop their skills, critical thinking and musicality.

Elizabeth Vierboom is a much sought-after presenter at in-services and educational conferences locally and internationally. She enjoys the status of ‘Accomplished Teacher’ with the NSW Institute of Teachers. Her previous appointments include Barker College and, most recently, Abbotsleigh.

An Australian singing adventure for children based in the United Kingdom and Europe

with Lyn Williams AM

Session time: Saturday mornings at 9am London (GMT/BST) / 10am Europe (CET/CEST)

Session dates: Saturday 6 March, Saturday 13 March, Saturday 20 March, Saturday 27 March, Saturday 17 April, Saturday 24 April (6 sessions total)

Session duration: 45 minutes – 1 hour

Suitable for children aged 6 -12 years.

Revised Cost: AUD$160 + booking fee, per child


About Lyn Williams

Since establishing the Sydney Children’s Choir in 1989, Lyn has completely transformed the choral landscape in Australia by harnessing the incredible musical and expressive power of young voices through her world-renowned children’s choirs: The Sydney Children’s Choir, Gondwana Voices and the Gondwana Indigenous Choir. This has grown into the organisation, Gondwana Choirs, which puts the vocal power of young voices at the centre of its impressive and wide-reaching artistic program.

As a conductor, Lyn could have easily chosen to pursue a career working exclusively with the nation’s symphony orchestras. Instead, she forged her path to create the instrument of a children’s choir in Australia like no one had done before. Her approach was, and remains, premised on treating young people with complete respect as musicians. This is reciprocated by her singers being willing and able, through her choral training, to charter previously unknown artistic territory.

Lyn is in constant pursuit of the new and the exciting and draws interesting and meaningful connections between artists. In addition to her ongoing work with the Sydney Children’s Choir and Gondwana Voices, for the past ten years Lyn has been devoted to the creation and evolution of the Gondwana Indigenous Choir (GIC). Through Lyn’s support, the singers see choral music as an ideal vehicle for the preservation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island languages and cultures. Lyn has developed strong relationships with Indigenous elders and cultural custodians across Australia and has brought together these cultural custodians with composers to create new works for the choir. This work would not be possible without Lyn’s artistic vision, cultural respect and integrity and this remarkable ensemble makes a unique contribution to Australia’s cultural life.

Recently, Lyn’s work with singer-songwriter Felix Riebl and the singers of Marliya (present and past members of the GIC) has resulted in the critically-acclaimed festival show Spinifex Gum, which has featured at almost every Australian arts festival, since its premiere at the Adelaide Festival in 2018. This work is political, challenging, and uplifting and evinces that our young Australians should be at the centre of our national discourse. Lyn conducts Marliya on their two albums – Spinifex Gum (2017) and Sisters (2019).

Lyn continues to maintain connections with professional orchestras as Music Director of several significant national events and as a trusted chorus master. She is frequently engaged to speak and lead workshops at international events such as Europa Cantat (2018) and Africa Cantat (2020).

Lyn’s choirs have shaped the course of thousands of lives, with alumni now performing in opera houses and concert halls across the world, completing ground-breaking medical research or as skilled and passionate leaders of non-profit organisations.

Lyn’s dedication and contribution to the Arts has been acknowledged on multiple occasions: with the Excellence by an Individual at the 2019 Art Music Awards; the Australia Council for the Arts’ prestigious Don Banks Music Award in 2017 for outstanding and sustained contribution to music in Australia in recognition of her lifework as founder and director of Gondwana Choirs; the Medal of the Order of Australia (2004); Member of the Order of Australia (2019) and most recently on being named recipient of the prestigious Sir Bernard Heinze Memorial Award, in recognition of her outstanding contribution to Australian music. She is also a composer, winning the 2009 APRA-Australian Music Centre Vocal/Choral Work of the Year for her work A Flock of Stars.

Sight Singing and aural skills for school aged students

with Gondwana Choirs

Suitable Ages: 10 -18

Course dates:
This course runs for 24 lessons, across three terms.
Term 1: starts Monday 22 February, ends Thursday 1 April
Term 2: starts Saturday 17 April, ends Thursday 24 June
Term 3: starts Monday 12 July, ends Thursday 16 September
Cost: AUD$480 + booking fee, for one course of 24 lessons
Time: Please click here to view the Sight Singing Timetable for 2021

Much of your success as a young musician depends on your ability to hear and understand music accurately.  Gondwana’s developmental aural and sight singing course will assist you to recognise and reproduce pitches, intervals and rhythms as well expanding your melodic memory. It aims to assist you to sing a melody at sight from written music. In learning these skills you will be accelerating your ability to sing more complex choral music and super charging a possible musical career.

Read more about each of the course levels from the drop-down list below.
Use the self-assessment guide to select your starting level. There will be flexibility to swap classes if you have not picked quite the right class for yourself.

Each course consists of 24 lessons, given across three school terms, comprising sight singing, melodic and rhythmic dictation. There are 9 levels to the program:

Level 1:

  • Keys: C, G and F Major
  • Intervals: Major 2nd and 3rd, Perfect 4th & 5th
  • Time signatures: 2/4 – 3/4 – 4/4
  • Rhythm: minim, crotchet, quaver, semiquaver and corresponding rests


Level 2: all material learnt in Level 1 +

  • Keys: A harmonic minor
  • Intervals: Major 6th, Perfect 8ve, minor 3rd & 6th, raised 7th
  • Time signature: introduction to 6/8
  • Rhythm: semibreve, dotted minim, dotted crotchet and corresponding rests


Level 3: all material learnt in lower levels +

  • Keys: E harmonic minor
  • Intervals: all Major intervals, consolidation of intervals found in a harmonic minor scale
  • Time signature: 6/8 – 9/8
  • Rhythm: syncopation, triplet, quaver-2 semiquavers, 2 semiquavers-quaver, ties


Level 4: all material learnt in lower levels +

  • Keys: D Major, D harmonic minor
  • Intervals: all intervals found in Major and harmonic minor scales
  • Time signature: 2/2 & 3/2
  • Rhythm: consolidation of all rhythms known so far, rhythm duets


Level 5: all material learnt in lower levels +

  • Keys: Bb & Eb Major, introduction to Mixolydian mode
  • Intervals: all intervals found in Major and minor scales and in Mixolydian mode
  • Time signature: 3/8, reading in mixed meter
  • Rhythm: more complex rhythms
  • Sight-singing duets


Level 6: all material learnt in lower levels +

  • Keys: A & Eb Major, G minor
  • Intervals and scales: melodic minor scale, triads in root position and 1st inversion
  • Time signature: 7/8, mixed meter
  • Rhythm: more complex rhythms (crotchet triplet…)
  • Sight singing duets, sing in both treble and bass clefs


Level 7: all material learnt in lower levels +

  • Keys and Modes: learning all 7 modes (covered in 10 weeks), all Major and minor keys
  • Intervals: augmented and diminished intervals
  • Time signature: 5/8
  • Cadences: Perfect and Imperfect cadences
  • Sight singing in trios, in treble and bass clefs


Level 8:

  • Keys and Modes: learning all 7 modes (covered in 10 weeks), all Major and minor scales
  • Intervals: all intervals
  • Time signature: 6/16 & 9/16
  • Rhythm: duplet, triplet in 5/8
  • Cadences: Plagal cadences
  • Sight singing: Modulations, atonal melodies


Level 9:

  • Keys and Modes: all keys and Modes
  • Modulating melodies, atonal melodies
  • Sight singing with text
  • Chordal dictation
  • Dictation in 2, 3 and 4 parts
  • Complex syncopation

Theory of Music

with Gondwana Choirs

Suitable ages: 10 – 25
Course dates: This course runs for 24 lessons, across three terms.
Grade 1 – Saturdays from 9.00am – 9.45am
Grade 2 – Tuesdays from 4.30pm – 5.30pm
Grade 3 – Tuesdays from 5.45pm – 6.45pm

Term 1: starts Monday 22 February, ends Thursday 1 April
Term 2: starts Saturday 17 April, ends Friday 25 June
Term 3: starts Monday 12 July, ends Friday 17 September

Cost for the course:
Grade 1 – AUD$480 + booking fee
Grade 2 – AUD$500 + booking fee
Grade 3 – AUD$500 + booking fee

Theory of music is an essential part of each musician’s journey – it’s how we learn and understand the building blocks of the music we sing and play.

Gondwana Online is offering theory of music grades 1, 2 and 3 as online courses taught in small groups via Zoom this year, taught by our experienced educators. We will be using the How to Blitz! theory books as the basis for our live, interactive classes. Books are available for purchase via the Gondwana Choirs online shop, or your local music retailer.