Linda Berry

  • PhD(SydU)
  • MMus(SydU)
  • TC(SydTC)
  • BA(SydU)

I was raised in a musical family with singing and the piano always happening. Piano lessons started at 4 yrs, then adding choirs and recorder, at 13 flute, so piano, flute and choirs persisted through school and university, and entry to music teaching in schools.

In Canada I took courses in non-Western music and finally began blues and jazz, long craved. Although the piano was still a big love, flute was portable and linked me as a muso with many groups during a 15-month period. Returning to Australia then gave me two decades of playing flute with bands (folk-rock, blues, latin and jazz) latterly as lead vocal and improvising flute.

In the 80s I also ran community classes "Fundamentals of Jazz Improvisation" for the WEA and a number of evening colleges and unis in Sydney. These were highly acclaimed by many students who included music teachers, student music teachers, budding musicians some of whom I now know to have achieved renown, and instrumentalists from many lifepaths who were interested in learning to improvise. 2MBS-FM and ABC Radio National recorded segments of these classes, and some interviews, for their documentary presentations about the Improvisation course.

Post-graduate study went in-depth to Indian, Turkish and Japanese melodic improvisation, with shakuhachi lessons from Riley Lee. I still enjoy teaching and playing music, swimming, painting and gardening; as well as chatting, laughing, walking, swim/playing with dog at Croudace Bay, researching odd questions online.

My current students are playing pre-composed piano pieces, mostly classical or jazz, some blues and popular, and some also improvise music in such styles or freely!

Details last updated: April 6, 2024