The seventies were heady times for artists in Australia. The Australia Council was established, the Sydney Opera House opened, our film industry made great strides forward, and a wide range of new musical initiatives, commercial as well as classical, changed the landscape. One of the new professional groups was the Leonine Consort led by Charles Colman. Colman assembled some of the best young singers in the country for performances of early music and vocal chamber music of the 19th and 20th centuries. In 1983, Peter Seymour, Artistic Director of the Sydney Philharmonia, invited Charles Colman to become the director of a new professional vocal ensemble as a part of Sydney Philharmonia. Auditions were held throughout Australia in early 1984. From over 100 applications, the initial octet was formed with Margaret Schindler, Romola Tyrrell, Susan Gotts, Narelle Tapping, James Bonnefin, Adrian Brand, Martin Cooke, and Stephen Bennett.