It’s really no secret that we have an abundance of talented youth, in all forms of endeavour, throughout the Far North.

Whether it be academia, the arts, sport or time investment in the care of our environment, there is just so many young folks who go about the business of excelling in their chosen field quietly but confidently. 15-year-old, Grade 10 student Liam Gane is one such example.

Last year, as a ninth grade student at Cairns State High School, Liam obtained his Associate of Trinity College London certificate in his chosen instrument – the cello. One of Trinity College’s youngest collegiates, this unassuming lad modestly considers this is another step in his desire to one day join a professional orchestra and from there, perform as a soloist.

And as his recent achievement will attest, he certainly has the talent to do just that. His musical journey began at age four, when his older brother Zakari (a graduate from the School of Excellence in Music at Cairns High) showed him how to hold the cello, the bow and play those first enthusiastic, albeit scratchy, notes. From there, he quickly picked up technique and rhythm before taking on the cello in earnest during his primary education at Edge Hill State School.

Like many, he auditioned to gain access to Cairns State High School’s esteemed Music Excellence program. Once gaining entry, the school’s fabulous music programme had Liam’s playing coming to life, firstly in junior ensembles, before taking a seat in the senior orchestra and exercising his vocal chords the senior chorale.

His playing began to flourish however via the private tutelage of Robert Dowdell, himself the owner of a very impressive resume, playing Double Bass with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra before moving onto The Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra, alongside Joan Sutherland. Robert identified early the abundant talent in Liam and set about pushing that talent to the limit. The result is a charming young man realising his ambitions by playing at a level well beyond his years.

He has already played with the North Queensland Chamber Orchestra on several occasions, most recently occupying the front desk during March’s performance of “Italian Dreams”, well known as being a challenging performance.

Liam can often be seen in a more relaxed mode busking at the monthly Palm Cove Markets, with the financial contributions he raises on these efforts being concentrated on the purchase of his next Cello.

Many of those visitors strolling through the markets have stopped to marvel at his playing from a vast repertoire. His music and the swaying palm trees which punctuate the Palm Cove esplanade are a perfect pairing. Liam is currently studying for his Licentiate of Trinity College of London and has a stated aim of one day travelling to Europe to pursue his ambition.

Of course, the vagaries of the COVID regime may dictate this timeline, but if his desire and determination are anything to go by, one can’t help but wonder if even this will stop him from achieving his dream.

Written by Jules Steer

Jules Steer is the Publisher of Oasis Magazine. With a career in Business Development spanning three decades, she's stressed, #blessed, and coffee obsessed ☕

A solo mum of four "determined", "focussed" and "energetic" young kids, she is often found with her head in her hands, lamenting her latest parenting fail.

A cricket-loving hip-hop tragic, very ordinary triathlete and champion cheerleader of all things #Cairns, Jules is easily recharged with Shiraz and Vodka - sometimes in the same glass.

Warning: Most situations get sweary quickly.