Karen Cortez is a genre-hopping cellist and amateur chorister, and completed her Bachelor of Music (Music Education) at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. She is one of the founding members of educational quartet "Quart-Ed", performing and teaching for audiences of all walks of life. The quartet's philosophy of pluralist music education means they frequently perform new Australian works, often in collaboration with composers. Karen has recently been exploring the string folk scene and performed with the Narrownecks at the Dorrigo Folk and Bluegrass Festival in 2019. Karen sustained an anxiety-related playing injury in 2016 and is now on the road to recovery with a passion for awakening and deepening people’s musical identities, and developing healthy music making practices in school settings and beyond. In her free time, Karen enjoys connecting with the world and people for whom music is about and for: Recently, she was a facilitator for Girl Guides NSW, ACT & NT's environmental advocacy seminar, and is currently completing a Certificate IV in Outdoor Leadership.

Karen is the Sydney Contemporary Orchestra - Ensemble Modern 2022 musician for the Sydney International Composers Concerts - Contemporary Chamber Music concert on December 22, 2022, at the TLC Theatre. Sydney Australia.


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I really want to thanks a lot for this beautiful opportunity, the performance was great, I'm very happy of that.
I hope to collaborate again with you again in the future.

Matteo Tundo - Composer (Italy) 



....an amazing energy, funding and collecting works is needed to organize and realize an orchestra such as SCO and all these wonderful concerts, you make the quality of music rise in every musical work and there are not a lot of you out there.

Trimor Dhomi - Composer (Kosovo)


"Thank you so much for providing such wonderful opportunities for composers! The December 22 concert marked the first time my music has been performed in Australia. Without SCO’s program I may never have reached this important milestone in my composing career. "
Paul Dice, Composer President, International Friendship Through the Performing Arts)