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Sir Charles Mackerras scholarship unites with the Allan Tregonning scholarship 2024

Fri 19 April 2024

We are delighted to announce that a £11,000 scholarship will be available to an Australasian music student for the academic year 2024/25, thanks to combined funding from our Sir Charles Mackerras and Professor Allan Tregonning scholarship funds. All students from the region will automatically be considered for the scholarship based on their audition performance.

About the scholarships

Professor Allan Tregonning arrived at Trinity College of Music in 1939 on an Australasian scholarship to study piano. Age 19, he was the youngest student ever to receive this award. Advised by the New Zealand High Commission to stay put in London when war broke out, Allan lived at the College at Mandeville Place, acting as Fire Warden. He had to cycle around London to sit exams, often in awful weather and on roads damaged by bombing. On one occasion, examiners took pity on him when he arrived soaking wet, allowing him to sit two exams in the same day. However, due to a misunderstanding, he played the wrong piece. The examiners offered him the correct music, but the talented pianist declined, playing the piece from memory. Allan eventually returned to New Zealand to become a Professor of Languages, but the memories of London and Trinity College of Music stayed with him. When he died in 2014, aged 94, he left the residue of his estate to Trinity Laban to provide a scholarship for a student from Australasia.

Sir Charles Mackerras became President of Trinity College of Music in November 2000, a position he held until his death in 2010. At the time of his passing, he was one of the most versatile, adventurous, and generally admired and respected conductors of the past six decades. Mackerras was brought up in Sydney, Australia, and went to Sydney grammar school. At the city’s New South Wales Conservatory (now Sydney Conservatorium of Music), he studied the oboe, piano and composition, and his first job was as principal oboist with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. For much of his life, Sir Charles lived and worked in London and Trinity Laban is very proud of its connection to him, as both an Honorary Fellow and later, our President. The Mackerras scholarship can be offered thanks to the generosity of Sir Charles and Lady Mackerras. We are also extremely grateful to their daughter Catherine.