Carissa Soares is a percussionist and educator from Perth, Western Australia. She graduated from the University of Western Australia in 2020 with a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) majoring in Specialist Music Studies. Upon entry into the university, she was awarded the prestigious Tunley Scholarship and throughout her degree she gained many accolades for percussion performance including the Ewen Prize in Music and the Edith Cowan Prize. Whilst at UWA, she studied under the tutelage of Louise Devenish, Brian Maloney, Francois Combemorel and Alex Timcke. This year, she has been awarded a scholarship at UWA to undertake her Masters of Music.
Carissa made her Perth Concert Hall debut in 2017 performing a vibraphone solo as part of the Performing Arts Perspectives concert which showcases the highest achieving Music, Drama and Dance students based on their WACE performance exams. She has also had the opportunity to travel to the Australian National Academy of Music to participate in a short course with Steven Schick, travel to China with the WASO Chorus playing timpani in Orff’s Carmina Burana and attend the Australian Youth Orchestra National Music Camp in 2019 and 2021. In 2019, she participated in the inaugural Marimbafest Australia competition, held at the University of Western Australia, taking out first prize and the people’s choice award. In 2022, she helped co-ordinate the event as Associate Director.
Carissa is a causal musician with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra and has performed with a variety of ensembles including the Perth Symphony Orchestra, Western Australian Youth Orchestra, West Coast Philharmonic Orchestra and Australian Bass Orchestra. She is currently a member of newly founded D2Drumline in Perth, Mosca Duo and the Perth Thundercorps; a marching band which performs at numerous events in Perth such as the Perth Wildcats home games. As an educator, Carissa currently tutors students from K-12 at Presbyterian Ladies’ College, Christ Church Grammar School and Iona Presentation College.