Emma Di Marco

contemporary musician, writer, photographer


D’Addario Woodwinds Artist Dr Emma Di Marco is an Australian contemporary musician, educator, artistic director, photographer, and entrepreneur. She holds a PhD in Musicology and a Bachelor of Music in Advanced Performance with 1st Class Honours. Emma was awarded a prestigious Churchill Fellowship to travel to the USA, the UK, and the Netherlands to study the practices of contemporary saxophone music and performer-composer relationships in this field. In 2018, Emma held performances in three continents (Australia, Europe, and North America) and began development on her most ambitious project yet - Blood Red - a mixed media performance art piece which explores personal and professional identities of musicians and how they are represented in sound, photography, and coding. This project is set for preview performances in 2020. Throughout 2019, Emma has launched her own lifestyle brand - Emma & Vincent - as well as starting work on her third studio album with the Barega Saxophone Quartet.

As a champion of Australian music, Emma has toured Australia on multiple occasions with programs that consisted of specially commissioned Australian works. These performances featured collaborations with Australian artists including Nexas Quartet and the Hourglass Ensemble. Emma has performed in recital in Brisbane, Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne, and Hobart and has performed internationally in the USA, the UK, France, Ukraine, and Croatia. She is a regular on the industry conference scene with performances at three World Saxophone Congresses (Zagreb 2018, Strasbourg 2015, St Andrews 2012), the Australasian Saxophone and Clarinet Conference (Sydney 2013), and the Australian Clarinet and Saxophone Festival (Melbourne 2011). Emma has completed two solo tours across Australia - Shimmer in 2016 and East Coast Tour in 2014 - which both featured new compositions for solo saxophone by young Australian composers. 


Emma is a founding member of acclaimed chamber ensemble, the Barega Saxophone Quartet. Her involvement with Barega has seen over a dozen new works for saxophone quartet commissioned, multiple tours interstate and internationally, as well as collaborations with Trichotomy, Hourglass Ensemble, the Queensland Wind Orchestra, Lyre Duo, and a range of visual artists. In 2016, Barega were featured soloists with the Queensland Wind Orchestra and performed David Maslanka’s Concerto for Saxophone Quartet and Wind Ensemble. Barega Saxophone Quartet released their debut album, Three Serpents, in 2015 which featured Australian compositions written especially for the ensemble. Their sophomore album, Abandon Control, was released in late 2017 and presents a wide selection of contemporary repertoire for four saxophones by both Australian composers and young artists. Both albums feature a collaboration with visual artist  Megan Crocombe. The ensemble conducted performance abroad in 2018 (Zagreb, Croatia) as well as engaging locally in Brisbane with Made Now Music and the Queensland Conservatorium.


Passionate about her work in education, Emma is Head of Woodwind and Community Programs at Grace Academy, the exceptional arts program of Grace Lutheran College in Brisbane. She has previously held positions as a saxophone specialist at Somerville House, Clayfield College, Cannon Hill Anglican College, and music specialist centre, Vivo College of Music. Emma's students have gone on to the undergraduate programs at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music and Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts; positions in the Queensland Youth Orchestras and the Young Conservatorium Ensembles (Griffith University), and extremely successful performances at Brisbane based competitions. Emma has held the position of sessional lecturer in saxophone at the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University.


Emma has studied primarily with Barry Bobart at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music. As a student at the Universite Europeene de Saxophone in 2010 and 2011, Emma has also studied with Claude Delangle, Arno Bornkamp, Vincent David, Damien Royanais, Masataka Hirano, Christian Wirth, Phillip Braquart, Lars Mlekuesch, the Diastema Saxophone Quartet, and the Habanera Saxophone Quartet. 


Emma is an accomplished researcher in the classical saxophone field. Her research has examined the performance of classical saxophone music in Australia with the aim of fostering further development and growth through increased engagement with digital music-making practices and higher job satisfaction of performers. Her previous research interests include: Classical Saxophone Music, Australian Music, Performance Practice, Performance Careers, Ethnography, Digital Music-Making, National Identity, and Job Satisfaction. Emma has presented at academic conferences in Brisbane, Sydney, Auckland, and Perth with a wide range of papers and lecture-recitals. These includes presentations at the MSA-NZMS 2013, 2015, and 2017 Conferences, the IMC 5th World Forum on Music, the IASPM-ANZ 2013 Conference, as well as the Australasian Saxophone and Clarinet Conference. In 2017, Black Swan Press released the eBook 'The Rites of Spring' of which Emma was a contributing author. She also has a selection of peer-reviewed and industry articles published. Emma has previously held the position of editor of the Australian Clarinet and Saxophone Magazine which is the leading industry publication of it's kind in Australia.


She is an endorsed artist with D’Addario Woodwinds and exclusively uses D’Addario Reserve reeds.