The divine songstress Katie Noonan will soon grace Southern Cross University’s contemporary music stage as part of the innovative Women in Music Program, now it its ninth year.

Katie will give a two-hour workshop on singing technique and song writing, working with students to give performance and industry feedback, as well as singing a couple of songs, using the University’s new Yamaha grand piano. The workshop will also feature second and third year student performances.

The pop diva will also be giving a public performance at Bangalow’s A&I Hall on Thursday, April 24, with Elixir and The Flametree Quintet.

Southern Cross University’s Women in Music Program has been essential for addressing issues faced in access, retention and success of female students in the non-traditional area of Contemporary Music at the University, said Leigh Carriage, lecturer in the Contemporary Music program.

“With very few full-time female academic staff, there are difficulties in providing support and female role models for students,” Leigh said.

“This project gives students the opportunity to experience first-hand the diversity of professional women working in the contemporary music industry, and to meet, be taught by, and network with some leading female practitioners — something which otherwise they experience less often at SCU.”

Previous visiting artists have included Jan Preston, pianist/songwriter; Sheryl Bailey, internationally recognised jazz guitarist; Lisa Gerrard, internationally recognised film composer/vocalist; Elana Stone, singer /songwriter; Zoe Hauptmann, bassist with the Elana Stone Band; Diana Anaid, singer/songwriter; Helen Stowasser, educator; Lauren Pelon, multi instrumentalist performance artist; Kylie Burtland, composer for music company Noise; and Anje West, Latin vocalist/percussionist.

Leigh said she had been ‘waiting for Katie to come here for a very a long time’ and was delighted that the acclaimed artist could finally fit the visit into her busy recording and performing schedule.

The Bangalow concert will feature music from Katie’s solo album Skin and a fusion of unplugged pop, original jazz and classical music performed over two unique sets when Katie performs with Elixir and The Flametree Quintet. Skin was certified ‘gold’ after debuting last August at number one on the national ARIA charts.

Photo: Pop diva Katie Noonan is coming to Southern Cross University to work with Contemporary Music students.