Now in his final year of study at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Coonabarabran’s answer to Pavarotti, Jack Ayoub, is grateful to the community who backed him for success.
What does 2017 have in store for Jack Ayoub?
There are a great many things in store. I have been appointed to the role of ambassador for the Sydney Symphony Orchestra this year, a role which will give me the chance to find new ways for the orchestra to engage a new/different audience. As part of this I have already been working with the team at the Sydney Symphony Orchestra to get bus-loads of kids from low-socioeconomic schools and second- English schools into the Opera House for concert performances. Last year I also created, along with my associate Mr James Fick, the St John’s College Forum. Based on the Athenian forums of old, it aims to offer up a different voice in provoking heathy debate. I have been relentless in using my clout as “Just Jack” to invite Kerry Chikarovski, Bob Carr, Miranda Devine, Professor Richard Banati and many others. This year I will continue my chairmanship of the forum.
What will this year’s study load involve?
I’m in my last year of the degree, which means I will only sleep when absolutely necessary.
Where do you hope to end up, career-wise?
I will either be singing internationally (eventually) or running the country from the PM’s office.
In addition to your studies, what else do you get up to in Sydney for fun?
Not a great deal. If I’m not doing something with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra or practicing or at the conservatory, you may find me reading the ‘Closing the Gap’ report and other such things. Basically, I love knowledge!
What was your highlight from last year?
My final recital! Why? Because everything went swimmingly and we got a mark of 88, would you believe?
Were there any major challenges that you had to overcome in 2016?
I don’t think I have ever really had any major challenges. Problems arise and I always (with help) manage to find a way forward.
Does returning to Coona during the holidays help “recharge the batteries”?
YES! In fact, there is a code at the conservatory, when I’m getting grumpy and short with people they say. “Jack’s tank is running low.”
How is the community back home helping you to achieve your dreams?
Plato is quoted as saying, “The community which has neither poverty nor riches will always have the noblest principles.” And I think that rings true in my case.
Jack Ayoub - university student, opera performer, ambassador, debate founder, all-round-nice guy.