Rātā Studios School of Music will be hosting a 4-day chamber and orchestral music program in January 2024. Following the great success of three Summer Orchestral and Chamber programs and four years of Winter/ Spring  WELLSO Weekends, we’re excited to bring this opportunity back!

Players of all levels are welcome!  The course is based on the principles of WELLSO (Wellington Late Starters Orchestra. The Chamber groups/sectionals will be organised according to experience and level of playing but the Orchestra will be for all the players and parts will be arranged accordingly so we can all enjoy playing together.

The programme will be hosted within Rātā’s modern facilities and practice rooms at Scots College. The cost will include all group tuition and sheet music, an early evening meal together on the first day, lunches plus morning and afternoon tea and coffee during the weekend. Individual lessons will be available with the tutors during the programme and a rota will be arranged nearer the time for those interested.  

What will WELLSO Summer 2024 be about?

The influence of Folk music

WELLSO Summer school this year will be based around Orchestra music influenced by folk tunes. You don’t need to look or listen far to find music that comes under this category. Dvorak, Brahms, Liszt and Bartok come to mind straight away and there are so many others once you start looking, Se we decided that the orchestra days of Summer School will be based around those pieces. There will be plenty of sectionals and also workshops looking at the folk music influences in classical music.

Pieces will include (sections of):

Bruch Swedish Dances No. 2

Smetna Die Moldau

Dvorak Slavonic dances No. 2 in E min

Brahms Hungarian Dance no. 3 in F

Liszt Hungarian rhapsody 2 arranged for orchestra

Maybe some Purcell too!

In addition to the two days of Orchestra music there will be 2 days of chamber music too. For the first time we are splitting the 4 days so we can all focus more rather than spreading ourselves too thinly! We hope this will give us all the chance to look at music in more detail. Music for the chamber music will depend on the instruments and ability of players signing up and that music will be organised later.

As always, we will have some great tutors for you

We have coaching from top NZ professionals and previous coaches have included: 

  • Doug Beilman (NZ String Quartet for 20 years) 
  • Brenton Veitch (Principal Cello Orchestra Wellington) 
  • Belinda Veitch (Viola, NZSO) 
  • Mark Cookson (Principal Clarinet, Orchestra Wellington) 
  • Bruce Roberts (Former Principal Trumpet, Auckland Philharmonic, Christchurch Symphony Orchestra) 
  • Lawrence Reece- Principal Timpanist, NZSO 
  • Ursula Evan, Violin, NZSO 
  • Lachlan Radford, Double Bass, NZSO, Auckland Philharmonic, Orchestra Wellington.  

A range of workshops on playing skills have previously included; 

  • Improving the quality of your tone while playing 
  • Looking after your body as a player 
  • Ideas of how to practice 
  • Coping with performance anxiety  
  • Dynamics and timings 
  • Playing in a section 
  • Care and history of our instruments 


If you are flying from outside of Wellington and are concerned about daily travel, we were able to arrange local players on the programme to give lifts every day in the summer and this worked very well. There is excellent and convenient accommodation at Victoria University as well as Wellington’s Hotels. 

“From participating in the WELLSO Summer programme my playing went to the next level…I had a one-on-one with one of the most respected Trombone players in NZ”. Pete from Hamilton WELLSO Summer School 2017 


“Well prepared, well organised, social, supportive and fun.  Don’t just think about it – GO!” Lynne, Violinist, WELLSO Summer school 2017 


Start: Thursday 11th January 2023
Finish: Sunday 14th January 2023
9.00am – 5.00pm Thurs-Sat 9.00 – 3.00pm Sunday


Scots College Creative and Performing Arts Centre Music Rooms


Mark Bobb and guest musicians for sectionals

Target Market



  • Please email mark@ratastudios.co.nz to let him know what instrument you play,
    so he can sort out your music and any dietary requirements you may have to assist us with our menu planning:

(incl GST)

Fee includes course tuition, morning and afternoon tea, lunches and one dinner on the first night.



About Mark Bobb

A Professional opera singer, jazz singer and violinist, Mark Bobb is also an accomplished teacher of voice, violin and theory.

Mark Bobb

He is currently living in Wellington, New Zealand, singing with the NBR New Zealand Opera Company. He coaches three choirs and is teaching at Scots College, St Patrick’s, Kilbirnie, St. Mary’s College, Hutt Valley High School, Encore School of Music. Mark also teaches privately.

Since moving to New Zealand in late 2010, Mark has been singing in the NBR New Zealand Opera Chorus in Wellington. He trained at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London obtaining a performance diploma, AGSM (Merit) and teaching diploma. Prior to that he obtained a degree in Performance Arts at Middlesex University, UK. He has sung with Opera North in the UK as well as numerous smaller companies and has toured extensively in the UK, Europe and the far east.

Mark teaches classical singing, jazz, musical theatre and performance techniques and has a lot of experience teaching voice for theatre to teenagers and young adults.

Playing music with others is an important part of music education and enjoyment and Mark is always keen to encourage chamber music. He teaches quartets and small string orchestras.

Our Location

Rātā Studios
Based at Scots College
1 Monorgan Road
Wellington 6022
Rātā Studios
Based at Scots College
PO Box 15064
Wellington 6243
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