Find love and make history

Barbara and Ken Klaebe standing together outside in professional attire.

Barbara and Ken in 1961

The University of Adelaide is a place where history is made, the wonder of music is celebrated, passions are explored, and love is found. 

The late Barbara and Ken Klaebe, alumni of the University, discovered all this and so much more when they both pursued German studies as part of their Bachelor of Arts degrees in 1961.

Both were eager to reconnect with their German roots. Little did they know at the time that they’d fall in love and be married the following year in April 1962. 

Barbara and Ken Klaebe with sons Peter and Simon in 1966

The happy couple with sons, Simon and Peter, in 1966.

Barbara and Ken’s son, Peter, together with siblings Simon, Rachel and Helen, purchased two side-by-side premium seats as part of the Elder ‘Take a Seat’ refurbishment in memory of their parents who had a love of learning, history and music. 

“They’d appreciate us children dedicating a seat to each of them. I’m sure they’d say it’s money well spent. Education was a huge thing in their lives which they instilled in us children. Mum wanted all of us to play a musical instrument,” Peter said.

Adele Wiebusch playing piano

Barbara's Aunty, Adele Wiebusch, playing the piano at Elder Hall in the 1930s.

“Mum learnt the piano and ended up being an organist at church. Her aunt, Adele Wiebusch, who was a music student at Elder from 1929 to 1930, taught Mum and her sister – my Aunty – Mary to play,” he said.

A passion for music runs in the family. Mary completed a Master of Music at the University in 1980, and her daughters, Stephanie and Lise, are both music graduates from the University, and have connections to Elder Hall too. 

Couple Barbara and Ken Klaebe smiling and standing together in a garden.

Barbara and Ken in 2016.

This year the Elder Conservatorium of Music invites you to 'take a seat' and help refurbish the iconic Elder Hall, a place where the wonder of music has been celebrated for more than 100 years.

Dedicating a plaque to honour a loved one is a special way to remember them for years to come. One hundred percent of your gift will aid in the refurbishment of Elder Hall. An engraved plaque will be placed on the back of the seat/s in recognition of your donation. The refurbishments will be complete in early 2023. Those who dedicated a seat will be invited along to an opening celebratory concert to view their plaques.

Tagged in philanthrophy, TakeASeat