Christian grew up surrounded by music in a family in which everyone played an instrument or sang. He obtained an honours degree in music performance from the University of Western Australia (UWA), with Alan Bonds. He continued his performance studies at the Australian National Academy of Music, learning from Marco Van Pagee, Caroline Henbest and Roger Benedict. Since then he has performed widely as a freelance viola player in a variety of orchestras, including the Western Australian Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria, and as a chamber musician.
At UWA Christian was introduced to the baroque and classical forms of his instrument. He grew to love the gut-strung viola, and has gone on to perform with many early music ensembles, including the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra.
At the same time, Christian was developing an interest in modern, contemporary and avant-garde music. As an undergraduate, projects for the Perth International Arts Festival and Tura New Music immersed him in the contemporary sound world, and introduced him to the possibilities of extended instrumental technique. In his subsequent freelance work, Christian has been privileged to work with many wonderful composers and performers of new music, notably Silo String Quartet, the Arcko Symphonic Project, and BIFEM’s own Argonaut.