Who is Fiona Caldarevic?

Glad you asked!  I love writing music. Whether it's brand new original music or rejigging someone else's.  I love turning music into something completely different, mixing up styles and genres, creating surprises. I also love making music bigger.

I am freshly qualified to write your arrangements and orchestrations with a Master Certificate in Arranging and Orchestration from Berklee College of Music. And I'm fresh full of new and exciting creative ideas. 

Below is the story of my musical journey.

History - Musical Influences

At the Merimbula Jazz Festival 1980

At the Merimbula Jazz Festival 1980

My influences are rather interesting, having been brought up by parents who are exotic-music-loving migrants from South America. As a youngster at home in Canberra, all day long without stopping I heard classical music of all types, folk music from all cultures including South America, Spain and for some reason Russia; easy listening orchestral music (think Percy Faith, Mantovani, Paul Mauriat etc); lots of nostalgic music like Bing Crosby & the Andrews Sisters (the choice of music accompanying holiday road trips); a heap of big band jazz - Benny Goodman, Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey; and ABBA.  As a child I was taken to jazz festivals where trad jazz bands were the choice entertainment.  

This interesting musical smorgasbord, for an Australian child of the 70s and teenager of the 80s, was certainly unique, and has manifested itself in different ideas and an enormous passion for great arrangements, lush harmonies, eccentric rhythms and an open mind for all musical genres. 

History - An Award-Winning Young Composer

Some publicity about the Composers Competition in the Canberra Times in the 80s.   Photo by Fairfax Syndicate.  

Some publicity about the Composers Competition in the Canberra Times in the 80s.  Photo by Fairfax Syndicate. 

By teenagehood I had already taken an interest in composition.  After having dabbled in writing music at school, as a school holiday activity at age 14 I attended a MIDI workshop - this is back in the mid-80s - and by the end of it I composed my first MIDI piece, "Andromeda 72", which I entered into the National Young Composers Competition in 1987 and won the "Computer Music and Fairlight" category.  One of the most exciting moments of my life was when they played Andromeda 72 at the Sydney Town Hall in front of a packed audience during the awards ceremony. 

As a Performer

As classical guitarist in  Two Girls Ten Strings  with violinist Lizzie Walsh

As classical guitarist in Two Girls Ten Strings with violinist Lizzie Walsh

I play piano, classical guitar, violin, viola and a bit of ukulele.  I have done all my exams for classical singing and have enjoyed doing gigs as a solo jazz singer as well, revisiting my parents' and now my own love of jazz and its gorgeous repertoire.  

Some notable groups I have gigged with:

  • Musical director and orchestrator for the Narrandera Community Orchestra
  • Musical director for Leeton-based acappella choir "Splendid Blend"
  • Classical guitarist and arranger in violin/guitar classical duo "Two Girls Ten Strings" in Narrandera
  • Violist and arranger in Narrandera string quartet "Highly Strung" 
  • Co-founder, arranger and singer in jazz acappella quartet "Sway" based in Sydney in the 2000s
  • Lead singer and keyboardist in Canberra-based covers band "Silhouette" in the 1990s