Richard Gill is surely Australia’s most renowned music educator. His advocacy for music education combined with obvious passion, charisma and intellect bring a better understanding of the inner workings of music to sizeable sections of the Australian music-loving population, particularly those interested in classical music.

Gill has long been an advocate for new music and composition, including in his role as a conductor. There are many composers who have benefitted from this (including myself), either on the mainstage concert platform with orchestras around the country, or in innumerable concerts to young audiences.

In such educational endeavours at which I was present, Gill never once spoke down to the children. Instead his approach was to present music as being valuable in itself, not as a crutch to other elements, such as “telling a story.” There was rarely if ever a common theme or narrative joining the works together: instead the merits of the music are presented as inherent if you are willing to investigate them as such.

It is largely this approach that informs much of Creating Music. This is not a method-book, but rather, as explained in his foreword to teachers, a “book to acknowledge your autonomy as a music teacher… introduce...

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