The Callaway Centre

Eileen Joyce - a timeline

Further information

Eileen Joyce Callaway Archive collection

Other Eileen Joyce Resources

  • De Vries, Susanna. Great Australian Women: from Federation to Freedom. Sydney: HarperCollins, 2001. pp.131-176.
  • McMahon, J.T. College, Campus, Cloister. Nedlands: University of Western Australia Press, 1969. pp.80-85.

Eileen Joyce lived from 1908 to 1991 and had a distinguished career.

25 March 1991

Dr Eileen Joyce died in East Surrey Hospital, Redhill, England after fracturing her hip in a fall. Her ashes were interred at St Peter's Anglican Church, Limpsfield, Kent, England.

November 1981

Eileen attended her investiture as a Companion of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George at Buckingham Palace, London.

28 June 1981
10 June 1971 and 28 August 1979

Eileen attended the opening of the Eileen Joyce Studio at the University of Western Australia, a building donated by her in memory of her parents. The Studio houses her Goff clavichord and French piano stool, and an Augustus John portrait of Eileen, presented to the Western Australian Museum in 1979, now on permanent loan to the University. 

10 June 1971 and 28 August 1979
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Eileen was conferred with honorary doctorates from the University of Cambridge (1971) and The University of Western Australia (1979).

28 October 1969

Eileen performed in a 2-piano recital with Australian pianist Geoffrey Parsons at Australia House, London in aid of the Australian Musical Association. 

18 May 1960
28 June 1981

Eileen gave a recital at a festival in Stirling, Scotland, playing two sonatas by Scarlatti, Beethoven's Appassionate, works by Mendelssohn, Chopin, Debussy, Ravel and Granados, with an encore of Liszt's Consolation in D flat. This was her last public performance for many years. 

9 - 16 October 1954

Eileen featured as a harpsichordist in the second of a new festival series, the Bach Festival in Bath, England. 


Harpsichord maker Thomas Goff taught Eileen to play the harpsichord in London. Eileen then commissioned Goff to build her a clavichord, which was later decorated by artist Roland Pym. It is now held in the Eileen Joyce Studio at the University of Western Australia. 

19 June 1947

Eileen performed with Sir Malcolm Sargent during the London Music Festival at Harringay Arena, London.


Eileen performed Rachmaninov's Piano concerto no.2 as the background musical score of the popular British film Brief Encounter. This was the first of several films in which Eileen performed and/or played a role.

3 September 1941

During World War II, Eileen made many recordings, including Mozart's Romance in A flat, K.205. 


Eileen was recruited by the Entertainments National Service Association (ENSA) to play for British armed forces during Word War II, appearing in army camps, hospitals and local theatres.

11 April 1936

Eileen returned to Australia for the first time, embarking upon a national tour. She also held a recital at the Kalgoorlie Town Hall on Easter Saturday.

4 January 1936

Eileen gave the first performance in England of Shostakovich’s Concerto for piano, trumpet and strings, op. 35, at a Proms concert in Queen's Hall, with Harold Barr and the BBC Symphony Orchestra under conductor Sir Henry Wood. 

1 September 1933

Music recording critic Christopher Stone hailed Eileen as a new great musical talent in the London Daily Express.

8 June 1933
28 June 1981

Eileen made her first recording at the Parlophone studio in London. She recorded Liszt's Concert study no.2 in F minor and de Schlozer's Concert study in A flat. 


After studying in Leipzig, Germany, Eileen delivered a letter of introduction from her music professor Robert Teichmüller to conductor Albert Coates in England. Coates arranged a successful audition with Sir Henry Wood. 

September 1926

At age 18, Eileen embarked on a tour of Western Australian country towns including Albany, Kalgoorlie and Boulder. A farewell concert was given at His Majesty's Theatre, Perth on 21 December prior to her departure for study overseas.

circa 1920

Eileen had her first piano lessons at St. Joseph's Convent School, Boulder, Western Australia. 

1 January 1908
Eileen Joyce was born in Zeehan, Tasmania, Australia, the fourth child of Joseph and Alice Joyce.

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Detailed timeline of Eileen Joyce's life

A fuller version of this timeline may be downloaded below.


Sources of information

  • Battye Library, State Library of Western Australia, Perth.
  • Callaway, Sir Frank and Lady Kathleen. Personal correspondence viewed with the permission of the Callaway family.
  • Davis, Richard. Eileen Joyce: a Portrait. Fremantle: Fremantle Arts Centre Press, 2001.
  • Joyce, Eileen. The Eileen Joyce Collection, print and sound recordings held at the Callaway Centre Archive, UWA.
  • Joyce, Eileen. The Handa Collection, sound recordings held at the Callaway Centre Archive, UWA.
  • UWA, School of Music, Perth.
  • UWA, Wigmore Music Library, Perth.

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