Erin Helyard has been acclaimed as an inspiring conductor, a virtuosic and expressive performer of the harpsichord and fortepiano, and as a lucid scholar who is passionate about promoting meaningful discourse between musicology and performance. Helyard is particularly active in reviving in both score and performance neglected seventeenth- and eighteenth-century opera, including works by Handel, Vivaldi, Grétry, Salieri, Gluck, Cavalli, and Charpentier. As Artistic Director and co-founder of the celebrated Pinchgut Opera and the Orchestra of the Antipodes (Sydney) he has forged new standards of excellence in historically-informed performance in Australia. Operas conducted under his direction have been awarded Best Opera at the Helpmann Awards for two consecutive years (2015 and 2016). Helyard duets in nineteenth-century repertoire on historical pianos with renowned Alkan exponent Stephanie McCallum and on fortepiano and harpsichord he has recently been described as “Australia’s most engaging soloist” by Limelight magazine (2016). In 2017 Helyard was awarded a major Australian Research Council Discovery Grant for a collaborative project with colleagues at the University of Sydney, Oxford University, and the Australian National University (Performing Transdisciplinarity: Image, Music, and Text in Eighteenth-Century Print Culture). His research interests include historical performance practice, eighteenth-century music, seventeenth- to nineteenth-century opera, intersections of music and capitalism, Ancient Greek music, the cultural life of the piano, Bourdieu, music and philosophy, the history of music notation, re-mixes and revisions, and topics related to the body, gender, sexuality, and feminism.
Erin supervises MPhil and PhD research on a wide range of topics, and is delighted to receive proposals for research in the fields of historical performance practice, eighteenth-century music, seventeenth-century to nineteenth-century opera, intersections of music and capitalism, Ancient Greek music, keyboard music, the cultural life of the piano, Bourdieu, music and philosophy, the history of music notation, re-mixes and revisions, and topics related to gender, sexuality, and feminism.