Two very special additions to our lineup

Orpheus is delighted to announce that two notable Wellingtonians have agreed to become Vice Patrons.

Dr Margaret Medlyn ONZM needs no introduction to Wellington audiences. Known as a charismatic singer/actress, Margaret sings regularly with the major opera companies and orchestras in Australasia. She is Head of the Classical Voice department at Victoria University of Wellington, and a Senior Lecturer, Classical Performance – Voice, teaching singing in the Classical Performance programme as well as coordinating and lecturing voice-related courses. 

Margaret has sung with English National Opera, Covent Garden, Vienna State Opera and all the companies in Australasia, and worked with leading international conductors including Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Simone Young, Donald Runnicles, Jeffrey Tate, Edo de Waart, Markus Stenz, Jaap van Sweden and Roger Norrington. Her roles include Leonore (Il trovatore), Aida, Tosca, Turandot, Giorgetta (Il tabarro), Maddalena (Andrea Chenier), Marie (Wozzeck), Salome, Judith (Bluebeard’s Castle), Agathe (Der Freischütz), Kostelnička (Jenufa) Kabanicha (Kátya Kabanová), various Rhinemaidens and Valkyries, Senta, Sieglinde, Isolde, Kundry and Fricka.

Suzane Snively ONZM, CNZM is also a well-known figure in the New Zealand arts scene.

Suzanne’s current roles in the arts sector include as a Director of New Zealand Opera, as a Trustee of the New Zealand Opera Foundation, as a Director of Experience Wellington and a Trustee of the Wellington Theatre Awards Trust. She sang with her university choral group, where she minored in dance, and was a soloist at her church

Suzanne has been honoured by the Queen with the 1993 Women’s Suffrage Centennial medal, an ONZM (2005) and DNZM (2021).  She was a Fulbright and Reserve Bank Scholar and honoured by the National Council of Women as one of their women leaders. Suzanne was Wellingtonian of the year in 2013. 

She specialised as an economic strategist as a Partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers for nearly 15 years with clients from the private and NGO sectors as well as central and local government.  She has been a company director for over 35 years, often chairing Boards. Her governance experience includes former Directorships of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, of R A Hannah and Co, of Wellington City Council’s Capital Holdings (which included being a Director of the Wellington Airport Board), of Whitireia and Weltec Polytechs, of Otago and Wairarapa Crown Health Entities, the Health Research Council, the New Zealand Army Leadership Board and the Whanau Ora Commission Agency (Te Pou Matakana). She was Chair of Fulbright NZ, of New Zealand’s first FM radio company, Cosmopolitan FM, of DANZ, of Mary Potter Hospice, the National Advisory Council on the Employment of Women (NACEW) and Whitireia NZ Limited.  As a Director of Westview Farm Partnership for 35 years and Chair of the Agri-women’s Development Trust, Suzanne brought an applied economic lens to improving productivity and she has experiential knowledge about agricultural economics.

Her economics background provides the context for managing risk through identifying opportunities as well as threats.  Suzanne is presently applying this context as a member of the Risk and Assurance Committee for the Ministry of Transport. She has previously chaired several other Audit and Risk Committees including for WOCA, the Ministry for the Environment, the Department of Conservation, the Health Research Council (Acting).

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