Grants and Support


Below you will find the history and use for both the Kate Jourdain and Ariadne Danilow Bequest Funds.


Grants from either of these funds may be available to Wellington Branch members upon application.


Click on the links for the criteria and application forms:











Contact with any questions or to submit an application.





Kate Jourdain   1920-1995


Kate Jourdain was born in Wellington and lived in Hataitai for much of her life. She studied with Valerie Corliss and gained her LTCL in 1945, then studied piano at the Sydney Conservatorium.


On her return to Wellington she took up teaching and performing full time before traveling to England to study at the Royal Academy and gaining an LRAM.


Kate became a member of the (then) Society of Registered Music Teachers on 12 May 1956 and served on the Wellington Committee for over 30 years. She served on the Council of the Institute from 1983-85 and was elected a Fellow of the Institute in 1994.


She was consistently helpful and wise and had regard for other people and a youthful outlook.


Kate bequeathed her music books to the Branch and the sale of these raised funds that were set aside for professional development for Branch members.


The Piano Fund


The Branch’s search for premises and a piano started in 1956, when  “The Association [later Wellington Branch IRMT] has been deeply concerned with the fact that it is impossible to hire a room with a first-class piano in a central position in Wellington, in which musical functions, studentsrecitals and music examinations could be held.”  (Taken from Wellington Branch records).


Four people started the fund-raising by giving concerts. This grew and after many fund-raising functions, student concerts, teacher performances, requests for donations, and other efforts, nearly 40 years later, over $14,000 had been contributed, but this was still not enough to buy a suitable piano and create funds to rent a suitable space.


Finally, at the Annual Meeting in 1997, the Wellington Branch Committee recommended to members that the fund might be better used for general music education and development purposes (for teachers and their students).


Chairperson Elaine Sharman remarked that “this would be an appropriate time to reflect on the huge contribution made by past members of the IRMT on the musical life of this town. We are very grateful for the financial contributions that they have made and also for the depth of musical knowledge and skill that they have passed on to their students and to the community.”


And so the Piano Fund was added to the “Kate Jourdain Memorial Fund” in memory of a dearly loved and respected teacher.




Ariadne Danilow 1901-1997


Ariadne Danilow was born in St Petersburg but was brought up in Vienna,where she was taught by her father who was a Professor of Piano at the Conservatorium. She married Dr Nicolas Danilow in Vienna but then, in 1938, he came, on his own to Wellington to work at the University.  Because of impending war, Ariadne was unable to get a passage to join him in New Zealand until 1947 –  9 years after his arrival here! Ariadne soon made her mark in Wellington by broadcasting and teaching piano.


Fluent in several languages, Ariadne gave coaching to singers in French, German and Russian. She had a very long association with Wellington Branch IRMTNZ, being a Chairperson in 1959 and serving on the Committee until 1990, into her 90s.


Having no descendants, the widowed Ariadne bequeathed the proceeds from the sale of her Wellington house to Wellington Branch IRMTNZ.


Her intention in the bequest was that it should encourage deserving students of Wellington Branch IRMTNZ members. Prizes for the Sonata Celebration come from interest from the Ariadne Danilow bequest (Taken from Wellington Branch records held at the Alexander Turnbull Library and other personal accounts).