Australian French Horn Player Carla Blackwood recently returned to Australia after over a decade living in Europe to take up the position of Lecturer in Music in French Horn Performance at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, at the University of Melbourne. Prior to this Carla was principal horn of the Tiroler Symphony Orchestra Innsbruck, Austria and horn professor at the Tiroler Landeskonservatorium for Music in Innsbruck. A passionate chamber musician and lover of variety, Carla regularly performs in a range of orchestras, as a soloist, and in chamber music projects across Austria, Germany, Switzerland, and in her home country Australia, on both modern horn and period instruments.
Successful auditions have moved Carla around Europe and the world. She has worked as guest principal horn with the SWR Sinfonie Orchestra Baden Baden und Freiburg, Vienna Radio Orchestra (RSO Wien), Camerata Salzburg, Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Royal Swedish Philharmonic Orchestra, Sydney Symphony, and Melbourne, Tasmanian and Adelaide Symphony Orchestras. In addition she has had contracts with the Deutsche Oper Berlin and Musikkollegium Winterthur, and performed with the NDR Sinfonie Orchestra Hamburg, the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, the Wiener Symphoniker, Sinfonie Orchester St Gallen, Sydney Symphony, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and many more.
Carla first spread her wings and left her home town of Bathurst to study at the Sydney Conservatorium under Geoff Colinson and Ben Jacks. Whilst studying for her Bachelor degree Carla performed regularly with the Sydney Symphony, developed her enthusiasm for opera playing with the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra, and toured with the Australian Chamber Orchestra. She was member of the Australian Youth Orchestra already at the age of 16 and continued to be involved in AYO throughout her time as student in Australia. Sydney Sinfonia, the then training orchestra of the Sydney Symphony, was similarly important in Carla's musical education, an ensemble of which she was a member throughout her Australian studies.
In 2004 Carla's love of music and hunger for adventure brought her to Austria, where she undertook postgraduate study with Hector McDonald and engrossed herself in the rich cultural life of Vienna. Lucky enough to be the winner of numerous scholarships, Carla's unabated curiosity led her to move to Basel in 2006, where she undertook further postgraduate study with Christian Lampert and Horst Ziegler. In addition to her studies on modern horn, Carla's interest in early music was awakened through her minor study of natural horn under Thomas Müller. Later studies in soloist performance led Carla to Radovan Vlatkovic in Zürich, with natural horn studies under Glen Borling.
In her free time Carla enjoys bushwalking (or hiking, depending on the continent!), yoga, swimming, knitting and reading.