Faleiry Koczkar (née Phillips) was born in Cardiganshire, Wales. Welsh was her first language and she did not speak English until she was 6 years of age. Faleiry played the harp in the Welsh National Youth Orchestra and attained a Bachelor of Music degree with honours at Nottingham University, an Associate Diploma for harp performance from the Royal College of Music in London and a Diploma of Education from the University of New England, Armidale, NSW. Faleiry has been a music teacher and director in London, Sydney, Adelaide and Melbourne. She was Director of Music at Melbourne Girls’ Grammar School from 1981 to 1994.
Since her appointment to Victoria Welsh Choir in 1994 Faleiry has been a huge asset to the choir and through her experience, knowledge and teaching skills. In 2015 the choir was delighted when Faleiry was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for services to choir music.
Inside and outside our choir Faleiry has also been deeply committed to the sustenance of Welsh language and culture and her work in this area was recognised by the National Eisteddfod of Wales in August 2012 making her Llywyd Cymru A’r Byd (President of Wales and the World) 2012-3 in recognition of her services to Welsh culture and the Welsh community in Melbourne. It is therefore totally fitting that Faleiry has been honoured not only by her native country but also now by her adopted country.