Friends, colleagues and former students of well-known and highly respected musician Emeritus Professor David Tunley will gather at The University of Western Australia tomorrow to celebrate his 80th birthday.
E/Professor Tunley founded several community music events including the York Winter Music Festival which ran for 10 years and the more recent Terrace Proms. His composition, Concerto for Clarinet and Strings, was performed by Jack Harrison (to whom the work is dedicated) with the Strings of the ABC Festival Orchestra at the 1966 Festival of Perth and his Wedding Masque was conducted in a later Festival of Perth by Georg Tintner.
E/Professor Tunley was born in Sydney in 1930 and studied for the diploma of the Sydney Conservatorium, majoring in piano. In 1958, he was appointed first full-time Lecturer in Music at UWA where he remained for the rest of his career, eventually being appointed to the Chair of Music and Head of the Department.
As a scholar, E/Professor Tunley is internationally recognised as a leading authority on French music and in 1983 was made a Chevalier in the Napoleonic Order of Palmes Académiques for services to French music. Four years later, he became a Member of the Order of Australia for services to music in this country.
He is a past National President of the Musicological Society of Australia, past Chairperson of the Music Board of the Australia Council, and a former Federal Chairperson of the Australian Music Examinations Board. He has been a Research Fellow at Christ Church and Wolfson Colleges in Oxford and at the Rockefeller Study Centre at Bellagio in Italy.
E/Professor Tunley has authored more than 70 publications including eight books, and was Founder/Conductor of the University Collegium Musicum.
Celebrations, at the UWA School of Music's Callaway Auditorium from 5pm on Tuesday 4 May, will begin with a special honorary lecture by Emeritus Professor Margaret Seares, who was Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor of the University and Head of the School of Music until 1995.