Conductor Patrick Burns won the Jury Special Prize in an international conducting competition in Bulgaria.
Conductor Patrick Burns won the Jury Special Prize in an international conducting competition in Bulgaria. Rob Williams

Ipswich City Orchestra conductor among world's best

IPSWICH City Orchestra conductor Patrick Burns has put our city on the map by beating some of the world's best at a recent international conducting competition.

Mr Burns came fourth in the Blue Danube International Opera Conducting Competition in Bulgaria, winning the Jury's Special Prize.

"I was elated. It was my first international competition," he said.

"It's judged on technical ability. There were no rehearsals so it was about your ability to make it up on the spot.

"A good conductor is like a good football coach. You have to direct professional musicians and inspire them to do better."

Mr Burns, who speaks German, French, Italian and Czech, said there were a number of surprising skills needed to be a quality conductor.

"Language is important and psychology. It can be true what they say about opera singers, they can be divas," he said.

"The competition showed the quality of Ipswich's performing arts. We've got such talented performers and an audience that embraces live entertainment.

"Conducting is one of the best jobs around and has taken me all over Australia and the world."



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