Compositions

Our researchers work at the intersection of many different musical forms, often combining traditional and contemporary practices and techniques in their compositions.

Below is a select list of compositions created by our researchers.

Boom for two double bassesTwo men playing double basses

A composition by Dr Robert Davidson and Zachary Sakrewski for two double basses involving singal processing, improvisation and extended techniques

Between the Palms of the Hands 

An experiemntal work for the Australian Recorder Project composed by Dr Eve Klein

Stalin's Piano 

Composed by Dr Robert Davidson, Stalin's Piano is a collection of "voice portraits" of artists and politicians in juxtaposition. The music is derived from the intonation of each speaker, closely followed and framed by the piano, which distills prosodic features into a idiolectic style for each person, and primes audience perception of the musical aspects of spoken prosody. Each speaker is heard in a recording and accompanied live by solo piano. 

Counting 2015 Collage of pictures and words

Counting 2015 is a work for voice, electronics and visual projections exploring the affect of numbers in contemporary life. Numbers are no longer cold calculations, but have become a central part of how we convey emotion, recognition and connection. From the quotidian emotional power of metrics to the body counts tallied by new human rights movements, such as Black Lives Matter and Counting Dead Women, numbers are entered into our phatic repertoire. Drawing upon improvised and extended vocal techniques typified by the work of composer Luciano Berio and vocalists Cathy Berberian and Diamanda Galás, Counting 2015 uses the extremities of the human voice and live processing to highlight the complexity of our new found sensibility to numbers.

Datasets related to the Syrian Civil War were shaped into a scrolling graphic score for voice and electronics. Through a process of crowdsourcing, videos of people counting were sourced from social networks as the generative audio-visual material from which the work is made.

Drawing upon the trajectory of web artists like Jonathan Harris, Aaron Koblin and Eric Whitacre who have used social media as a key point of connection with audiences as actors within their work, Counting 2015 asks its participants, contributing via Facebook, to reflect upon the emotional and human consequences of numbers they encounter in that space. In this way the composer acts as curator and facilitator of a discussion in online communities, where participants are both audience members and performer-collaborators.