The Lost Art of Classical Music Improvisation

Presenter: Rupert Guenther

Wednesday 09.50 – 10.30

Dora Stoutzker Hall

Invitation for 1-4 delegates to take part. Please bring instruments if you wish.


A new breakthrough approach to improvisation, which allows classical musicians without any previous improvisation experience to very quickly begin to give wings to their own feelings, ideas and life experience, and improvise their own original classical music, in much the same way that a painter creates pictures of the imagination onto a blank canvas.

It is worth noting that this approach differs radically from other popular notions of improvisation in classical music practice, such as extemporisation which treats existing compositions as a springboard for the musician to merely add their own variations to, or jazz, which means embarking on an entirely new life-long learning discipline in order to even begin improvisation.

This approach, to the contrary, relishes in and is strengthened by all the traditional classical training, sensitivity, nuance and experience which classical players already have attained, and then adds a few simple understandings which form the basis of all music throughout time.

We find that quality improvised music made in this manner is indiscernible from the finest composed scores in its unique diversity and emotional value for both the artist and their audiences. Imagine every artist bringing music to the concert platform which no one else can offer!


Rupert Guenther has taught his approaches to classical music improvisation in masterclasses in universities, schools and music camps for over 20 years including Vienna University for The Performing Arts, St Paul Summer Academy (Austria), Vorarlberg State Conservatorium (Austria), ESTA international conference Sweden, The International Society for Improvised Music (Denver USA and Switzerland), The Reflective Conservatoire (The Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London), as well as private sessions for some of the world’s top soloists and key players from opera and symphony orchestras in Europe.

He has toured worldwide for over 20 years, and has released over 28 CDs of his own original improvised music since 2003 including five CDs commissioned and recorded for Radio ABC Classic FM in Australia.

He holds a Bachelor of Music Performance in violin (Melbourne University). He studied violin with Brian Finlayson and the renowned Professor Helfried Fister, and attended Masterclasses with Professor Igor Ozim.

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