Musical director in tune with Prince Harry
IT WAS a sea of lights outside Sydney Opera House last week as thousands descended on the harbour for the Invictus Games opening and closing ceremonies.
It’s a long way from a small country town, as Chinchilla born-and-raised Games musical director Steven Stanke would know.
Lieutenant Commander Stanke’s love affair with music began at the age of 12 when he joined Chinchilla Citizens Band.
Upon graduating high school, he decided to move to Toowoomba to pursue his passion for music and hasn’t looked back.
Now the director of music for the Royal Australian Navy, the Invictus Games is just his latest achievement.
Lt Cdr Stanke said the road to preparing all the live music for the ceremonies had been incredible.
“I am excited but tired, it’s been a long process and lots of weeks of rehearsals,” he said.
“Even though the Games are Prince Harry’s idea, we really wanted to take Australia to the world and present a very Australian flavour for the opening.”
For the ceremony, Lt Cdr Stanke arranged all the music and conducted a tri-service band of 38 musicians from the army, navy and air force.
“The atmosphere was fantastic,” he said.
“The best part for me was seeing all the competitors come in sitting right in front of Harry.”
TRIBUTES FLOW: Lachlan Hughes (right), pictured with his father Philip at their property Heatherlea, was tragically killed in a workplace accident on Wednesday.