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In conversation with Stephanie Grenning

Danger Music

Eddie Ayres

QAG Lecture Theatre

Biography / Culture/Social Equity / Music



#About the event


Eddie Ayres

Eddie Ayres

Eddie Ayres learnt the viola as a child in England, studying in Berlin and London before playing the viola for eight years with the Hong Kong Philharmonic. As Emma Ayres, she moved from Hong Kong to Australia to present a long-running and extremely popular radio program on ABC Classic FM, while teaching music privately and professionally.

When Emma hung up her headphones at the end of 2014, there was a public outpouring of emotion. This tattooed, intelligent, warm and witty woman had made her way into the hearts of many Australians. What the devoted audience didn't see, however, was Emma's daily struggle to live within her woman's body. For sixteen years, she knew that she was transgender but to take any action seemed impossible. Emma believed there was too much to lose - family, friends and her career.

In 2016, Emma accepted a position teaching cello, viola and double bass to Afghanistan's children at the world-renowned Afghanistan National Institute of Music. Amid the chaos and unpredictability of life in war-savaged Kabul, Emma realised she had to accept her future and returned to Australia to begin transitioning from female to male. In 2016, Emma became Eddie.

Danger Music, Eddie's second book will be published in September 2017. He is currently writing a children's book which will be published in 2018. Cadence: Travels with Music, published in 2014, was his first book.


Stephanie Grenning

Stephanie Grenning

Stephanie Grenning is a teacher, musician, researcher and conductor. She is currently the Junior Secondary Coordinator and music teacher at a large State High School in Cairns comprising a multicultural student population, including a large number of ABTSI and Pacific Islander students along with students from a refugee background. Through this role she manages and implements social emotional learning and wellbeing programs catering to diverse and at-risk students. As well as guest lecturing at the University of Queensland, Stephanie assisted with the design of a new course called Music in War, Protest and Peace. She has presented internationally on intercultural music-making and music education in at-risk and diverse settings, including post-conflict cultural reconciliation.

Stephanie also conducts the Training Choir of the Cairns Gondwana Indigenous Children’s Choir, a part of the Gondwana Choirs directed by Lyn Williams OAM. Additionally, she is currently employed as a research assistant for Margaret Barrett on the ARC Pedagogies of Expertise in Musical Thought and Practice research project. Stephanie studied at the University of Queensland with Associate Professor Patricia Pollett.

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