THIS PAGE LAST MODIFIED : Friday 31 January 2020 10:47

A biographical register of Australian colonial musical personnel–Q

Dr GRAEME SKINNER (University of Sydney)


To cite this :

Graeme Skinner (University of Sydney), "A biographical register of Australian colonial musical personnel–Q", Australharmony (an online resource toward the history of music and musicians in colonial and early Federation Australia):; accessed 10 April 2020

- Q -

Introductory note:

The primary focus of the biographical register is musical personnel first active before the end of 1860, with a secondary focus on members of their circles - families, pupils, colleagues, and other important contacts - first active after 1860.

Beyond that, there has been no systematic attempt as yet to deal with musical personnel first active after 1860, and so far the coverage is selective.

A major upgrade of the contents of this page was completed in December 2019, and newly added documentation (including genealogical data) and Trove tagging now brings the page content up to 1860 close to completion.

QUELCH, Thomas (Thomas QUELCH; Mr. QUELCH)

Harpist, harp player

Active central VIC, 1856-70 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (shareable link to this entry)


[Advertisement], Mount Alexander Mail (17 September 1856), 3 

MESSRS. HARNEY, QUELCH and COPELAND respectfully intimate to the Inhabitants of Castlemaine and vicinity, they are open to engage for balls, suppers, and quadrille parties, either in town or country. N.B. - A String Band. Apply as above to Mr. Jones, Albert Hotel, Castlemaine.

[Advertisement], Mount Alexander Mail (16 September 1857), 3 

MESSRS. HARVEY & QUELCH respectfully intimate to the patrons of the above rooms, that the Quadrille Party is permanently fixed for Thursday evenings, commencing on the 17th inst.
Violinist - Mr. HARVEY.
Harpist - Mr. QUELCH.

[2 advertisements], Mount Alexander Mail (12 April 1858), 3 

MESSRS. HARVEY and QUELCH'S select Quadrille Party will commence on Tuesday Evening next, 10th instant. Gentlemen's Tickets, 2s Gd. Ladies free. Dancing to commence at half-past eight.

Criterion Assembly Room, Castlemaine.
A SELECT Quadrille Party held in the Lower Room of the above splendid Hall every Thursday Evening. Gentlemen's Tickets, 2s 6d. Ladies free. Dancing to commence at half-past eight.
Violinist, Mr. Harvey.
Harpist, Mr. Quelch.

"THE ODD FELLOWS' BENEFIT", Mount Alexander Mail (16 December 1859), 4 

The entertainment at the Mount Alexander Hotel under the patronage of the Castlemaine and Chewton lodges of Odd Fellows, is described the most successful thing of the kind that ever took place on Forest Creek. The numbers present were variously estimated at from 400 to 300. Among the artistes were Mrs. Vincent, Mdlle. Louise, Mrs. King, Miss Barnet, Mr. Black, Mr. Kitts, and Messrs. Harvey and Quelch, all of whom generously volunteered their services. During the evening the "Maniac Lover" was performed by the amateurs. The beneficiares will receive between 50l and 60l.

[Advertisement], Mount Alexander Mail (4 June 1860), 3 

A QUADRILLE PARTY will be held in the Hall of the above, every Wednesday and Saturday evening, commencing at eight o'clock.
Violinist, Mr. Harvey.
Harpist, Mr. Quelch.

[Advertisement], The Ballarat Star (16 December 1868), 3 

FIRST-CLASS VIOLINIST desires Engagement. Apply Mr. Quelch, Harpist, opposite Fire Brigade Room, Ballarat East.

The official Post Office directory of Victoria . . . 1869 (Melbourne: F. F. Bailliere, 1869), 597 

Quelch Thos., harpist, Ballarat (31)

[Advertisement], The Ballarat Star (27 June 1870), 3 

TO-NIGHT! - Quelch's Select QUADRILLE ASSEMBLY. Conway's Cosmopolitan Hotel, Humffray street north.

QUIN, Alfred Charles (Alfred QUIN; Mr. A. C. QUIN)

Violin player, conductor

QUIN, Frederick (Frederick QUIN; Fred QUIN)

Violoncello player, cellist

Both arrived Brisbane, QLD, 9 November 1873 (per Runnymede, from London, 6 August)
Active Brisbane, QLD, ? until early 1880s (shareable link to this entry)




"SHIPPING", The Brisbane Courier (10 November 1873), 2

November 9. - Runnymede, barque, 701 tons, Captain Hay, from London, August 6. Passengers - Saloon: Messrs. Nixon, Kitson, Williams, Queely. Second Cabin: Messrs W. B. and P. W. Nutting, Frederick and Alfred Quin . . .

[Advertisement], The Brisbane Courier (13 November 1873), 1

BRISBANE MUSICAL UNION. COMPLIMENTARY CONCERT to Mr. R. T. JEFFERIES, on TUESDAY, 25th November instant, on which occasion Messrs. FRED. QUIN (Violincello) and ALFRED QUIN (Violin), from London, will make their first appearance.

"MADAME MALLALIEU", The Brisbane Courier (9 March 1874), 2

MADAME MALLALIEU, long the deservedly favorite pianiste of Brisbane, will take her annual benefit at the School of Arts this evening . . . The performance will be under the leadership of Mr. Jefferies, and among the professional musicians to be present may be mentioned Madame Osborne, Messrs. Frederick and Alfred Quin, and Mr. Dignan . . .

"Musical Societies. TO THE EDITOR", The Brisbane Courier (28 January 1878), 3

"Music", The Brisbane Courier (31 December 1879), 5

"Music", The Brisbane Courier (2 March 1881), 6

"Music", The Queenslander (28 October 1882), 580

I understand it is in contemplation to organise an orchestral society in Brisbane, under the direction of Mr. Alfred Quin, for the practice of symphonies, overtures, concertos for solo instruments with accompaniments for orchestra, operatic selections, and so on. I heartily wish the new society success. It will supply a want now much felt amongst amateur instrumentalists who are anxious to make themselves acquainted with purely orchestral writings - an advantage hitherto denied them. The society need not in any way intrench upon the good work now being done by the Musical Union: on the contrary, the increased practice and readiness which will be acquired by the members will render them more efficient as executants, and should be thus a distinct gain to the old society, to which it ought to be a willing handmaid. The number of instrumentalists in Brisbane is now largely increased, so that this opportunity for general practice will, no doubt, be eagerly embraced, and the concerts of the society will serve to place it upon a sound financial basis.

"AMUSEMENTS", The Queenslander (3 March 1883), 336 

For his violin solo, Mr. Quin had selected the second concerto of De Beriot, and, whether from the favourable acoustic properties of the hall, or because he was in extra good form, Mr. Quin appeared to excel himself. This favourite composition has rarely been better rendered in the colony, and this painstaking artist has seldom been heard to better advantage.

"PROCEEDINGS UNDER THE COPYRIGHT ACT 1912", Commonwealth of Australia Gazette (13 April 1916), 913 

4792. Matthew Joseph Keogh, 6 Elizabeth-street, Norwood, S.A., and Alfred Charles Quin, 52 Rundle-street, Adelaide, S.A. - Song: "The Small Still Voice." Words by "Gumsucker." Music by A. C. Quin. 23rd February, 1916.

"CROWN ABANDONS LARCENY CHARGE", News (18 January 1933), 7 

Bibliography and resources:

Peter Roennfeldt, "Music by the few for the many: chamber music in colonial Queensland", Queensland review 19/2 (December 2012), (178-89), 181, 182, 183, 184 (DIGITISED)

QUIN, Michael (Michael QUIN)

Bugler (21st Regiment)

Active Perth, WA, 1835 (shareable link to this entry)


"MAGISTRATE'S COURT", The Perth Gazette (22 August 1835), 549

Michael Quin, a bugler in H. M.'s 21st Regt, was, charged with having taken away three planks of native mahogany, the property of William Ward . . .

"MAGISTRATE'S COURT", The Perth Gazette (29 August 1835), 555

Patrick King, corporal in H. M. 21st Regt., laid an information against William Ward, of Perth, for purchasing a pair of ammunition boots, issued to Thomas Fitzpatrick as regimental necessaries . . . Thomas Fitzpatrick, being examined, stated, that on last Friday week, he took the same pair of boots . . . He swore that Quin, the bugler, never gave him a pair of boots to dispose of, and that he never used such words to Ward as "I can depend on your not saying any thing about it" . . .

On reference to our report last week of the proceedings in the Court, it will be observed, that the above-named W. Ward preferred a charge against Michael Quin, (the person alluded to in the previous case,) of taking away certain planks, his property, for which offence he was committed, but released from custody, on the undertaking of his Commanding Officer, that he shall appear at the next Quarter Sessions of the Peace, to take his trial.


Musician (Achille Fleury's band)

Active Ballarat, VIC, 1857



Vincent v. Fleury de Recuillon. -
Mr. Cope appeared for the plaintiff, and Mr. Wigley for the defendant.
This was a plaint to recover £29 10s. for the performance of the plaintiff, his wife, and a Mr. Youle, for singing and playing the piano for M. Fleury in Melbourne.
The defendant was the well-known M. Fleury, formerly the leader of the band at the Victoria Theatre . . .
A witness named Quinn, who had been one of Mr. Fleury's band, was called, and said he had performed at Mr. Fleury's concerts for five months before the plaintiff, his wife and Mr. Youle came, and they were well attended. After these parties came, the attendance fell off.
The extra night charged £2 10s. for, was for the benefit of Mr. Fleury.
"The musicians agreed to take half salary. The Vincents and Youle sang only two songs.
Cross-examined by Mr Cope. - One of these songs was the "Rat Catcher's Daughter," the other a comic duet between Mr. Youle and Mrs. Vincent.
Auguste Feuillen [? Feuillon] gave similar testimony to the preceding witness.
The Assessors found a verdict for the plaintiff for £13, being the balance, allowing for £14 already received.

QUINN, Michael (Michael QUINN)

Bandmaster (Band of the 18th Royal Irish Regiment), ? bandsman (Band of the 12th Regiment)

? Active Australia, c.1860 (with 12th Regiment)
Active Australia, March-August 1870 (en route from New Zealand to England)
Died Parsonstown, Ireland, 31 March 1876 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony)

See also Band of the 18th Regiment

"Band Master Quinn, 2/18th Reg.", Museum of New Zealand/Te Papa Tongarewa 


"TESTIMONIAL TO BANDMASTER QUINN", New Zealand Herald (29 March 1870), 3 

The testimonial to be presented by the Auckland Choral Society to Bandmaster Quinn of the 18th Regiment is now completed, and is now on view at Messrs. Upton & Co.'s establishment, Queen-street. The gift consists of a very handsome conductor's baton carved out of native wood and highly finished with silver mountings. In the butt is set a very rich specimen of auriferous quartz, and a silver plate bears the following inscription,

"Presented to Michael Quinn, Bandmaster 2nd 18th Royal Irish, from the members of the Auckland Choral Society."

The baton is accompanied by a very neatly furnished case lined with blue velvet, and containing the following address: -

"The Auckland Choral Society, in recognition of the valuable time and zealous service which you have, during your residence in Auckland, devoted gratuitously to the cause of music, desire to present you with the accompanying conductor's baton.

"It will serve to perpetuate in your memory the time when you conducted the first symphony that was ever played in the colony of New Zealand - possibly in the Australian colonies - and you will never again hear Mozart's No. 6 without remembering the evening when H.R.H. the Duke of Edinburgh, President of the Society, played amongst your first violins.

"Your departure from amongst us has created a void which at present we can see no means of filling; for, apart from the love of music for its own sake, which you succeeded in engrafting in your bandsmen who chiefly supplied the wind instruments for our performances, we can scarcely hope to meet again a conductor who will inspire his performers with such perfect confidence in his skill, power, and presence of mind. You will, of course, in the places you will hereafter visit, meet with better music than Auckland music, and better musicians than your old friends here, but we venture to say, that you will not, during your future career, find a more enthusiastic and united band, or one by whom your own remarkable talents and graceful skill, will be more appreciated, and we hope you will occasionally think with pleasure of your days amongst us." . . .

"THE ROYAL VICTORIA THEATRE", Sydney Punch (26 March 1870), 9 

The old "Vic" looked quite itself again, when, on Wednesday evening, quite a crowded House assembled to witness Sun and Shadow. His Excellency the Governor and Suite, Major Bishopp, and the officers of the 18th Regiment, and several families of distinction were present. The splendid band of the 18th, through the courtesy of the officers, attended and discoursed most excellent music. The overture I'ltaliana in Algieri was given with great precision and force, and a choice selection of gallops, valzes, &c., was performed during the evening much to the delight of the audience. Mr. Quinn, the bandmaster, must be complimented upon the efficiency of the bandsmen, among whom may be mentioned two cornet players especially, who are undoubted masters of that instrument . . .

"The Band of the 18th (Royal Irish)", Sydney Punch (23 April 1870), 2 

The hint which Mr. Punch gave in last week's issue has been most courteously acknowledged by the gallant officers of the 18th, and arrangements have been made for their splendid band to play alternately (on Tuesdays, from three to five o'clock) in the Gardens and Domain. A very charming programme was given on Tuesday last, in which the overture to "Masaniello," a waltz by Quinn, with cornet solo by Mr. Quinn, the bandmaster, and a selection (Nabuchodnosor), formed the principal attractions. The citizens of Sydney will doubtless gladly avail themselves of the opportunity of hearing the enlivening strains of the band of the 18th.

"The Band of the 18th Royal Irish . . .", Empire (26 April 1870), 2

The Band of the 18th Royal Irish will perform the following programme in the Botanic Gardens, this (Tuesday) afternoon, weather permitting, commencing at 3 o'clock: - March - "Grand parade," Moore; overture - "Barbier Seville," Rossini; waltz - "Au du Schonen Zlanen Donan," Strauss; selection - "Macbeth," Verdi; quadrille - "Sydney, Mrs. C. Read; galop "Foxhunters;" "God save the Queen."
M. Quinn, bandmaster.

"BOTANIC GARDENS", The Sydney Morning Herald (17 May 1870), 4

THE BOTANIC GARDENS. - The Band of the 18th Royal Irish will perform the following programme in the Botanic Gardens, this afternoon, weather permitting, commencing at 3 o'clock. March, "Grand Parade;" Overture, "Tancredi," Rossini; Waltz, "Demaris," Quinn; selection, "Un Ballo in Maschera," Verdi; Quadrille, "Swiss;" Galop, "Schomberg;" "God Save the Queen."
M. Quinn, bandmaster.

"HAND BALL MATCH", Bell's Life in Sydney (25 June 1870), 2

On Tuesday afternoon, a game of hand-ball took place, at the Victoria Barracks, between Mr. Quinn, bandmaster of the 18th Royal Irish, and Mr. Dillon a local player of some celebrity. The match was for £15 aside, and the best out of seven games. Shortly after they commenced it was evident that the bandmaster was over-matched, and he lost four games in succession, which constituted Mr. Dillon the winner. The game lasted one hour and a quarter. Another match between the same two, for £10 aside, is on the tapis.

"YE BANDE OF YE 18th REGIMENT IN YE BOTANICALE GARDENES", Sydney Punch (30 July 1870), 4

"BOTANIC GARDENS", The Sydney Morning Herald (2 August 1870), 5

The Band of the 18th Royal Irish will perform the following programme in the Botanic Gardens, this afternoon (weather permitting), commencing at 3 p.m. March, "Beauty," Sprake; overture, "Semiramide," Rossini; waltz, "Elisen Tange," Gung'l; fantasia for trombone, "Swiss Boy," Quinn; selection, "Maritana," Wallace; quadrille, "Adelina," Glover; galop, "Durch Die Lufte," Ziehrer; God save the Queen. M. Quinn, bandmaster.

"18TH FOOT", Naval & Military Gazette and Weekly Chronicle of the United Service (12 April 1876), 16

The news of the sudden death of the late bandmaster, Mr. M. Quinn, was received in the battalion on the 31st ultimo with deep regret. Mr. Quinn left the battalion on furlough on 1st January last, but, owing to severe illness, was unable to return in February. He was originally on the staff of the King's County Militia, which he left, and joining the 1st Battalion 12th Regt., from which corps he proceeded to Kneller Hall in 1863 to be trained as bandmaster. In 1866 he joined the 2nd Battalion, "The Royal Irish," in the field in New Zealand, and gained the war medal. Lieutenant-Colonel Wilson, commanding, allowed the band to wear crape for a week, and prohibited them from playing on church parade or to church on Sunday. He also issued the following regimental order on Saturday: - "It is with much regret that the commanding officer has received official information of the death, on the 31st March, of Bandmaster Michael Quinn, at Parsonstown. He was possessed of high musical attainment, and the unwearied attention he paid to the band resulted in the good reputation it has maintained both in New Zealand and since its return this country."

Bibliography and resources:

Online inventory, National Army Museum, UK 

Musical instruments 1855-11-4: Baton, 1866; presented to Bandmaster M. Quinn of the 2nd Battalion 18th (Royal Irish) Regiment of Foot; silver plated head with bands of engraved double swags round dome and staff socket; plain ebonised cane tapering to ferrule which is decorated as head; silver collar in middle of cane is inscribed with presentation inscription.

Musical instruments 1955-11-4: Baton, 1870; presented to Bandmaster Michael Quinn of the 2nd Battalion 18th (Royal Irish) Regiment of Foot by the New Zealand Auckland Choral Society; silver plated head inset with a polished white stone with yellow metallic flecks, possibly gold ore; central and terminal bands with oblique floral bands in relief; floral patterned staff socket; brown wooden cane tapering to silver plated ferrule, decorated

QUON, Ah-Lok

Chinese theatrical performer and singer

Active Castlemaine, 1861 (TROVE tagged by Australharmony) (shareable link to this entry)


"NEW INSOLVENTS", Bendigo Advertiser (6 July 1861), 2

Quon ah Lok, of Castlemaine, Chinese theatrical performer, and singer, now a prisoner in Her Majesty's gaol, Sandhurst.
Causes of insolvency - An adverse judgment in County Court, and pressure of creditors.
Assets, £66; liabilities, £456 4s.; deficiency, £390. 4s."

© Graeme Skinner 2014 - 2020