Phil Braithwaite

Flute, Clarinet, Saxophone

Phil Braithwaite began his musical education at the Christchurch School of Instrumental Music, as a participant in New Zealand's inaugural Suzuki Method program. As a school aged pupil, Phil studied Violin, Recorder, Piano, Voice and Clarinet before settling on the flute as his main instrument and obtaining his L.T.C.L. Diploma at the age of 16. Phil went on to study with Roger Buckton and Rolf Just (University of Canterbury, New Zealand) and after arriving in Australia continued with Prue Page, Toshio Takahashi (Suzuki Method) and Linda Vogt.

After a varied careers in set building and construction Phil became the National Sales Manager at the Flute Tree(Woodwind Group Pty Ltd) in 1994, where he also trained as a repair technician.

Since 2005 Phil has been based at the Mitchell Conservatorium in Bathurst, teaching flute, woodwind instruments, directing school bands and performing across a range of genres. He has been a member of a number of orchestras, chamber music ensembles and other groups and appears regularly as a soloist and ensemble member in the Blue Mountains and Central West.

In 2014 Phil became Associate Director of Mitchell Conservatorium where he looks forward to enabling a vibrant future for regional conservatoriums in Western NSW.


Phil Braithwaite, woodwind teacher, Bathurst

Hollie Coleman

Clarinet, Saxophone, Flute

Hollie Coleman has been involved in music since she was 6 years old when she started playing the Recorder. She then began learning Clarinet which she has been playing since the age of 8. During this time she has completed Trinity and AMEB exams including her ATCL Recital Diploma in 2005. She attended the University of Newcastle Conservatorium in 2008 where she started her Bachelor of Music degree. Upon returning to Bathurst in 2009 Hollie joined the staff at MitCon and has continued her studies by distance education since 2010. After taking some time off studying while having her 2 children she successfully completed her Bachelor of Music degree majoring in Clarinet in 2016. She also completed the Jerry Nowak Conducting Course in 2010 which she found to be one of the most rewarding educational experiences she has had.

Hollie learnt Flute, Saxophone and Oboe while in High School and a few years ago decided to learn Trumpet for a little while. Hollie’s love and passion for music and performing is evidenced in the many shows that she has been involved in, such as the Carillon Theatrical Society productions both on stage and in the orchestra. She has performed in many community ensembles over the years including the Bathurst City and RSL Concert Bands, CTS Show Band, Macquarie Philharmonia, and in High School with Swing Factor.

Hollie also loves conducting and had a very exciting opportunity in 2014 when she conducted the Bathurst Chamber Orchestra accompanying the amazing flautist Jane Rutter. Hollie loves teaching and hopes to inspire her students and continue developing her performance and teaching career.

Hollie Coleman, woodwind teacher, Bathurst

Sam Schoeler-Jones


Teaching the flute at the Mitchell Conservatorium since 2007, Samantha completed a Bachelor of Music Performance at the Western Australian Conservatorium of Music with Richard Gill(OAM) as Dean in 1991.
During her time in Perth she performed with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra. In 1995, she was accepted into the Franz Liszt Hochschule für Musik in Weimar, Germany, to complete further studies with Professor Robert Winn, former Principal Flautist of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London.
In 1997, Samantha moved to Berlin to study Music Therapy at the Insitut für Musiktherapie. On returning to Australia in 2004, she decided to combine her experience as a music therapist with music education and completed a Diploma in Secondary Education. 
Between 2007 -2017  she worked as a classroom music specialist in the Blue Mountains with the Department of Education, teaching recorder ensembles across a number of schools in the Blue Mountains, as well as conducting choir and school band programs.
In 2016, Samantha was invited to become a mentor for the National Music Teachers Mentoring Program under the auspice of the late Richard Gill (OAM). A major highlight for Samantha during her employment with the Education Department, was to be invited to conduct 700 recorders for the Festival of Instrumental Music at the Sydney Opera House in 2014 and 2015.

Presently, Samantha divides her time between teaching flute and recorder at the Mitchell Conservatorium and being employed as a Registered Music Therapist (RMT) in South West Sydney, supporting vulnerable families and children and providing professional development in the early childhood sector. Further to this, Samantha specialises in early intervention supporting neuro-divergent children and children with disabilites 0-12yrs.


Samantha Schoeler-Jones, woodwind teacher, Bathurst

Emma Knott


Emma initially studied at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music. During 1987 she undertook a Masters Degree in Performance. Returning to Australia and while teaching at the University of Wollongong, Emma formed the Wollongong Conservatorium Flute Ensemble, later to become the Stables Ensemble, which has won many major Australian and overseas awards. She was a lecturer in Flute at the Sydney Conservatorium from 1996 to 2006 and assisted in preparing a beginner tutor book with Margaret Crawford for Mark Walton. Emma is an AMEB examiner and has been Secretary of the Australian Flute Society, Vice-President of the Flute Society of NSW and conductor for the Sydney Youth Orchestra. She has played with numerous orchestras and has been very active in encouraging, adjudicating and teaching flute to early beginners through to post graduate students.



Dr Jason Thornton

Saxophone, Clarinet, Flute

World renowned multi instrumentalist/composer/educator,Dr Jason ThorntonBMus(Hons.), DipEd, MMus, PhD, has been at the forefront of the music industry for the last three decades, touring the world with the historical elite.

His playing credits include;

Frank Sinatra, Shirley Bassey, James Taylor, Gloria Estefan, Cher, Cat Stevens,The Troggs, 1927, Matt Finish, and The Masters Apprentices. Most recently he has been working with Angry Anderson (Rose Tattoo), Steve Kilbey (The Church), Ian Moss (Cold Chisel), Craig Calhoun (Temptations), as well as many local acts.

As an Educator;

The Australian Institute of Music, Australian International Conservatorium of Music, Capilano University (Vancouver), University of Western Sydney,Southern Institute of Technology (NZ), Edinburgh University (Scotland), Mitchell Conservatorium.

Dr Thornton is primarily a saxophonist but plays the following;

Sopranino Sax, Soprano Sax, Alto Sax, Tenor Sax, Baritone Sax, Eb Clarinet, Bb Clarinet, Alto Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Piccolo Flute, C Flute, Alto Flute, EWI, Piano, Bass and Guitar.


Dr Jason Thornton, woodwind teacher, Bathurst

Katherine Howarth


Katherine Howarth is a clarinettist based in Orange, NSW. Katherine completed a Bachelor
of Music Performance in clarinet at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, achieving First-
Class Honours. Scholarships awarded to Katherine during her undergraduate degree include
The William and Marie Souter Encouragement Awards in 2018 and 2019 and the Vice
Chancellor’s Global Mobility Scholarship. During her time at the Sydney Conservatorium,
Katherine studied clarinet and bass clarinet with Susan Newsome. During her studies,
Katherine performed in masterclasses with international clarinettists Jose Franch-Ballester
and Dimitri Ashkenazy and lessons with Robert Hill, Janet Hilton, Richard Hosford, and
Timothy Lines while on tour in the U.K.
Katherine was the principal clarinettist of the Conservatorium Symphony Orchestra (2019),
Wind Symphony (2019) and toured China with the SCM Modern Music Ensemble as bass
clarinettist (2019). She has also performed with the Sydney Youth Orchestra (2018-2021) and
was the principal clarinettist during their 2019 international tour of the U.K. Katherine made
her debut as concert soloist with the Sydney Youth Orchestra in their opening 2021 concert,
performing Claude Debussy’s Première Rhapsodie for clarinet and orchestra. In addition to
orchestral performances, Katherine has participated in various chamber music mentoring
programs, including Ensemble Offspring’s Hatched Home Academy (2020).

Anna Ossig-Bonanno


Anna trained in Germany mainly in the Orff-Schulwerk approach. Anna has been teaching at Mitchell Conservatorium in Bathurst since 1992. She initiated Early Childhood Classes at our Lithgow Division for 3 to 9 year olds in 1995, including tuned percussion and recorder. She has prepared children for instrumental demonstration concerts. Anna completed her Bachelor of Education (Primary) at the University of New England in 2003. 

Anna teaches recorder and classical guitar and is the Director of Mitchell Conservatorium's Recorder Ensemble.



We pay our respect to all First Nations elders both past and present from the lands where Mitchell Conservatorium students reside. In particular, we acknowledge the Wiradyuri and Dharug peoples of Australia, who are the traditional custodians of the land where Mitchell Conservatorium campuses are located.

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