interview with cut common

Workshop environments should be supportive and encouraging, and a safe space to try out new ideas, even if they don’t work.

Workshops should never be a give-and-take transaction, but rather a sharing of information and ideas. They can often be a daunting experience for composers, especially when you’re sitting in front of as many musicians as are in an orchestra.

To help promote KPO’s concert, I did an interview with Cut Common about my time as a composer in Ku-ring-gai Philharmonic Orchestra’s composer workshops.

You can check it out here.

2017 - 2018

It’s been a very exciting year since the last little update posted on this website. There has been a lot of flying and writing and rehearsing which I haven’t had the chance to share, so here’s an update of what I’ve been doing!

incubating 001 / seoul / december 2017
At the end of last year, I had the privilege of flying to Seoul to work with ensemble mise-en on a piece I wrote for them for a new festival called audio trading manual. I was thrilled to have been a chosen composer in the incubating 001 program, and to have met other great composers from around the world.

I wrote a piece called treading a line between states of flux for the members of ensemble mise-en, and I learnt a lot working with them.

the madeira residency / madeira / january 2018
At the start of January, I flew to the small island of Madeira to take part in the Estalagem da Ponta do Sol Residency for Contemporary Music and Electronics. It was a very exciting ten days in the beautiful town of Ponta do Sol, where I was able to learn from the composition faculty, take inspiration from the beautiful scenery, and collaborate with other talented composers and musicians. As part of the course I was taking part in, I was given the opportunity to write a new piece for Keiko Murakami which I workshopped with her during the residency.

Working with Keiko resulted in two recordings of a structure of silences: an exploration of 間 ; with and without electronics, and the premiere of the piece in a concert on the last night of the residency.

During the residency, fellow Australian participant Dan Thorpe performed a piece I wrote for him in 2016 called lightjar, which was the first time I was able to hear it performed live!

as it calls in the dawn light / merism duo
I was really excited to have had the chance to work with saxophonist Mary Osborn again, this time writing for her duo with Michellina Chan, Merism Duo. They were putting together a program of new pieces by different international composers inspired by the birds of their country. Written for two saxophones and electronics, the electronics is derived from field recordings I took in my backyard and around my neighbourhood, capturing the birdsong of many different birds that live around me.

The piece was premiered at the World Sax Congress in Zagreb, and toured around a bunch of cites in Australia, Singapore and Europe.

june in buffalo festival / buffalo / june 2018
I attended the June in Buffalo Festival this year as a participant composer. It was a very intense week of exciting New Music, having attended many masterclasses and workshops with renowned composers including Louis Karchin, Roger Reynolds, John Harbison and Hans Thomalla, as well as meeting other fantastic composer participants and having the chance to hear about, and listen to their music.

As a participant composer, I also had a piece, a structure of silences, performed in the afternoon concert on the first day of the festival by Michael Matsuno.

ensemble offspring hatched open mic night / sydney / july 2018
As part of Ensemble Offspring’s Hatched Open Mic Night at 107 Projects in Redfern, I had the pleasure of working with my good friend, Naomi Johnson, on the Australian premiere of a structure of silences.

While rehearsing, we were also able to record the piece without electronics at the music box project’s residency at legs on the wall in Lilyfield, capturing its beautiful warehouse acoustics.

I’ve been really lucky to have had this piece performed on three different continents, by three different people in different spaces, and I have started a new Soundcloud dedicated to documentations of this piece.

penrith symphony orchestra / sydney / september 2018
I was thrilled to have been commissioned this year by Penrith Symphony Orchestra as the winner of their Young Composer Award. They premiered like two tiny lights on September 1st at the Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre in Penrith, conducted by Paul Terracini.

making waves playlist / australia / september 2018
As always, it is an honour to have a piece included in the monthly Making Waves playlist. This month’s playlist, “Stillness Waves” was curated by Ethan Connor McAlister, who included Keiko’s acoustic performance of a structure of silences, recorded outside the Capella in Madeira, on the playlist. You can check out the whole playlist by clicking here!

six-four / melbourne / october 2018
six-four is an exciting ensemble made up of young and talented musicians from Melbourne, and I was excited to have been commissioned by a group of performers who are so passionate about new music. They were really fun to work with, and premiered the voice of space in their concert, Bloom, on October 13th.

ku-ring-gai philharmonic orchestra/ sydney / november 2018
In late 2016, I partook in a workshop with the Ku-ring-gai Philharmonic Orchestra in which I wrote them a piece called eggshell. They have included it in their program for their concert on November 3rd, alongside the music of Debussy, Tchaikovsky and Prokofiev. If you’re interested, click here for more information.

classical sundays at the studio / sydney / November 2018
I’m going to be a part of Classical Sundays at the Brett Whitely Studio in Surry Hills for the third year. This time, I’ve written a piece in a style I’ve not tried before, in which the performers will play from an image I’ve drawn. The concert will also feature music by other composers such as Vickie Tran, Will Hansen and Tom Alfred amongst others, and will be held on Sunday 18th November from 2-3pm, so check it out if you’re around!

Here’s a sneaky-peek at the score:

000 2.JPG

That’s everything for now! Have a nice day!

new recording: it melted with the rain

Hi there!

Lots has happened in the last little while - I lead a mass flute workshop for a piece I wrote called spilt milk, and I went to Connecticut!

I'm really proud to share with you this little recording of it melted with the rain which was commissioned for Meraki Chamber Players (Natasha Loomis, Alexander Knox and Terrence Thornhill).

it melted with the rain was premiered by the Meraki Chamber Players at the Evening of Premieres as part of the festival on the 20th of June at the Hartt School in Hartford, and you can check out the livestream of the whole concert on the Connecticut Summerfest Youtube Channel, or you can have a listen to the studio recording (mixed and mastered by Will Jones) right here:

Hope you enjoy it! And have a great day!

p e a c e

march: a little update

Hello Lovely Humans!

It's been a little while, and I've been running around like a mad person, getting back into the swing of things I haven't stopped by to update you on what is going on! There's been a couple of exciting things happening in the background of teaching life, and here they are:

1. eighth blackbird workshop
I am super lucky to be friends with the powerhouse that is Liz Jigalin who runs the music box project. She recently asked me if I wanted to be a part of the workshop they were doing with incredible performers from Chicago's eighth blackbird. So while the workshop did feature a couple of pieces written by young composers, it was more focussed on the performance of the works, rather than the actual compositions. 

This was a really exciting experience - the music box project resurrected a piece I wrote for them last year called skin, translucence and the members from eighth blackbird gave them tips, as well as things to think about when interpreting and performing a piece. It was an honour to meet them and a really fun experience!

2. glasswalk premiere
I can now officially say that I've had an orchestral premiere! Thanks to John Keene and his orchestra ensemble nouveau, I had my very first orchestral premiere last Friday. It's quite something to be able to hear a piece you've only imagined in your head come to life on a stage in front of an audience!

3. connecticut summerfest
I am heading over to Connecticut in June for Connecticut Summerfest! I've never been on a solo mission overseas, or been to a music summerschool or course overseas before so I'm pretty nervous and excited. As part of the course, I've been commissioned to write a piece for the Meraki Chamber Players, who I'm very excited to work with, plus, I'm very happy to let you know that I'll be attending the festival on a Women's Composer Scholarship! Let me know if you've been before/are going/have any recommendations of things to do over in Connecticut!

That's about all from me at the moment. There are still some things working in the background that I can't let you know about just yet, but I'm pretty excited for when I can!


happy 2017 + tilde~ new music academy + glasswalk premiere + something new to listen to

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you've been having a great 2017 so far, and not melting in this crazy heat (at least, in Sydney!)

2017 is looking like a big year so far - a lot of it slightly unplanned, but very exciting. What I can tell you about so far is a couple of things that are happening in the very near future.

1. tilde~ new music academy
Melbourne, I am heading your way! I'm excited to be participating in this year's tilde~ music academy and learning from the likes of Liza Lim and Chris Dench and Mohammed Kubbarra! There's also the tilde~ new music festival on the Sunday the 17th of January, and it has a stellar line-up. You can find out more about it here. If you're in Melbourne, or heading to tilde~, definitely say hi!

2. ensemble nouveau + glasswalk premiere
On March 3, ensemble nouveau is premiering glasswalk, an orchestral piece that I've written! It's not a lot that you get to write for orchestra, let alone, hear something you've written for it in a concert! In the program is also some Dvorak and Brahms, so if you're not that into new music (which is ok!), there'll hopefully be something for you too! You can check out the event here. Entry is free!

3. another orchestral piece
Last year, I was very lucky to have been chosen as one of three composers to write for, and workshop with the Ku-ring-gai Philharmonic Orchestra. These workshops took place over three weeks in November, and the outcome was a recording of eggshell. Have a listen, and let me know what you think! KPO is a wonderful orchestra and I had a great time working with them. Definitely check them out!

That's all from me for now. Hope you all have a fantastic 2017!

yMusic + the music box project.

I had such a wonderful time at the yMusic + the music box project gig on Friday night! Thanks to everyone who came, and especially thanks to the musicians who brought skin, translucence to life and Liz Jigalin and Lamorna Nightingale for organising such a cool event!

yMusic is probably one of the coolest and tightest ensembles I've seen, so definitely check them out! I'm off to see them play with Ben Folds tonight ^.^

Anyway, if you missed the gig last week, here's a recording of my piece:

classical sundays

I just finished writing a piece for Classical Sundays at the Studio, a concert series organised by AGNSW held at the Brett Whitely Studio in Surry Hills. 

I've recently stumbled across and become intrigued by the art of paper marbling, in particular, the traditional Japanese art of suminagashi, a technique that involves crating patterns using ink floating on water. 

This piece written for flute, clarinet, violin and cello explores this art, and you can come see its premiere at the Brett Whitely Studio on 18th September from 2-3pm. Would love to see you there!

callan park: lives lived, lives forgotten, and lives found

I've been working with Michelle Leonard and Leichhardt Espresso Chorus this year as their conducting intern, but recently, I've had the opportunity to write them a piece to open their concert about Callan Park. Inspired by the present-day greenery of Callan Park, they will be performing a piece I wrote called Green Mosaic. We're working on it in rehearsals and starting to come together!

The concert is featuring a new song cycle, written for LEC and Song Company by Andrew Howes.

Come and have a listen, the choir is wonderful and I've been having such a fantastic time working with them!  


yMusic + the music box project.

I was recently asked by Elizabeth Jigalin - director of the music box project. to write a piece for a quartet of violin, saxophone, trumpet and bass guitar for their concert with yMusic, an ensemble from NYC who are currently on tour with Ben Folds. 

The concert will be featuring a whole lot of new music from both Australia and the USA, including seven world premieres by the likes of Harry Burgess, Milan Monk, Elizabeth Jigalin, Missy Mazzoli and myself, as well as music from Sufjan Stevens, Son Lux, Nico Muhly and much more. 

The concert's going to be at Backstage@Creative Space 99 in Darlinghurst at 7pm on the 19th of August. Super excited to be part of this project and can't wait for the concert! Tickets are $25 and available here and on the door.

You can find more info here.

15 seconds of harp

Recently, I stumble upon a project create by Olivia Jageurs called "15 second harp", where you can send Olivia (who is based in the UK) a 15 second piece for harp and she will play it and post it on social media the next day!

I sent through a piece I wrote called stasis and you can listen to it here and be sure to check out all the other 15 seconds on her website as well!

solo waves ~ making waves playlist

I'm excited to announce that my piece, TRACINGS, is in this month's Making Waves playlist: Solo Waves.

Making Waves is a series of monthly playlists curated by Lisa Cheney and Peggy Polias that features new Australian works, and I'm thrilled to have been included alongside some very talented people!

You can check out the playlist here!

I've also previously been included in their playlist: Existential Waves, which you can find here!