Talbot’s teaching tops state

By Ashleigh Fielding | posted on October 26, 2017

NEVILLE Talbot’s proudest moment as a musician and teacher in Albany has been watching the unity and connectivity of the musical community grow.

There is no doubt he is deserving of his first music teaching award.

Mr Talbot was awarded the Curtin University Teaching Excellence Award at the WA Regional Achievement and Community Awards Gala on Friday night.

He received a certificate, a trophy and a $2000 cash prize.

“It was a beautiful night with incredible people who have done something great for their community,” Mr Talbot said.

“It would have been a fabulous night even if I hadn’t have won, so winning was a lovely cherry on top.”

Mr Talbot was recognised for his contributions to the broader musical community of Albany and the Great Southern, including his teaching at Albany and North Albany Senior High Schools, and for his role as artistic director for the Albany Sinfonia orchestra.

Mr Talbot’s quirky nature, cheeky grin and passion for music is clearly reflected in his teaching.

His enthusiasm for music has encouraged many students to break out of their shells and lean on their musical talents.

“I run the lower school specialist music program at ASHS, as well as the senior concert band, the school choir, the VOICE program, percussion and the Sinfonia,” Mr Talbot said.

“I try and get artists down to Albany too, as I think it’s quite value- adding for our students.

“A singer or a cellist will come down and perform with the Sinfonia, then I will get them to come to school and work with the students. Just seeing the growth and broadening of the entire music program at ASHS has been a highlight for me.

“It’s been a bit of a slow-moving iceberg, but it’s building solid momentum.”

However, Mr Talbot said his teaching and success as a musician wouldn’t have been possible without his family.

“It doesn’t work without a family and a team,” he said.

“Your family has to give up a lot when you’re a musician.

“They travel with you and go to gigs and go to meetings.

“My wife and I are planning a holiday with our two daughters with the prize money.

“I think it should be something to share, to say thank you.”