Prof WALTER, Adrian, AM
Office of Director
Professor Adrian Walter AM has had a distinguished career in tertiary education for over 30 years. He took up the position of Director of the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts in 2012 after a period of time as Professor of Music and Head of the School of Music at the Australian National University, Canberra.
Adrian has held a number of senior managerial positions in the tertiary education sector where his ability to manage change and implement strategic direction have been keenly sought. He was appointed to lead and develop emerging schools in Creative Arts and Humanities at the Charles Darwin University, Australia, as well as provide strategic leadership as Dean of the Faculty of Law, Business and Arts.
Adrian has a strong commitment to developing close ties between tertiary institutions and their communities, including industry, employers and other stakeholders. To this end he has been successful in developing academic and vocationally oriented programs that balance the requirements of high quality tertiary education with local cultural enrichment. He has been successful in creating internships for students and in significant fundraising from both government and corporate organisations.
As part of his commitment to ensuring that Hong Kong students have opportunities to enrich their education through the use of new educational technologies, he initiated and oversaw the establishment of the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Art’s Innovation Hub (iHub). This will continue to be a major initiative for the Academy. It includes live streaming of masterclasses and innovative approaches to performing arts education and authentic learning supported by strong links to the professions.
Adrian’s unique combination of practical skills as a performing artist and his tertiary management experience have seen him involved in three major reviews of Australia’s biggest University Conservatoires. He also recently undertook a consultancy for the South Australian Government looking at new initiatives in performing and cultural arts education.
In 2013 he launched an ambitious 10 year strategic plan for the Academy to ensure that it continues to thrive both locally and internationally as a significant part of a continuously evolving global higher educational environment. He continues to work closely with staff and stakeholders in the development of this strategic ‘road map’ to ensure that Academy graduates are well prepared to take up roles as the next generation of performing artists and cultural leaders.
A graduate of Adelaide University’s Elder Conservatorium of Music, Adrian began his career as a classical guitarist. He went on to gain his PhD in the area of Historically Informed Performance Practice in the area of 19th century music. As a specialist in this area he has performed as a soloist and chamber musician throughout the world on original 19th C guitars. Recognized as an expert in this area he has also worked internationally presenting masterclasses and lectures in Australia, Italy, the UK and China, including the Central Conservatory in Beijing and in Shanghai and Tianjin.
Adrian’s interest in music also led him to set up the Darwin International Guitar Festival, of which he was Artistic Director for 14 years. The Festival was the first of its kind in Australia and bought together the world’s leading classical guitarists, composers and makers. During this time he commissioned over 30 new works, greatly enriching the guitar repertoire.
Adrian’s distinguished contributions to Australia’s cultural landscape were recognised in 2009 when he was invested as a Member of the Order of Australia, for “service to the arts, particularly in the area of classical guitar performance and musical composition through the Darwin International Guitar Festival, to music education, and as a supporter of emerging performers.”
- BMusHon (University of Adelaide)
- GDipEd (SA College of Advanced Education)
- PhD (Charles Darwin University)