Ella Macens’ new work will be performed by the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra and broadcast on Fine Music 102.5.

Ella Macens has been named as the winner of the 2017 Young Composer Award. Willoughby City Council and Fine Music 102.5 announced today that the Sydney-based composer has taken out the competition with her work Flight.

Ella Macens. Photograph © Darwin Gomez

The Young Composer’s Award is an annual competition jointly run by Fine Music 102.5 and Willoughby City Council, supported by APRA|AMCOS, which provides emerging composers under the age of 30 with the opportunity to have their work premiered live on stage by the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra. The performance is also recorded for future broadcast on Fine Music 102.5. The composer also receives a cash prize of $5,000 from APRA|AMCOS. Previous winners include Elizabeth Younan, Solomon Frank, Christopher Pantelidis, Rachel Merton and Andrew Howes.

Macens’ work Flight will be performed on September 16 and 17. Discussing her composition she said: “As the music unfolded, my mind became hooked on visualising the act of flying in all its forms – I imagined birds flying in our skies. To explore these perspectives, the piece morphs from boisterous and bold rhythmic motifs to more melancholic, soaring passages, as well as representing both the micro and macro perspectives of what these creatures see from above, diving in and out of lakes and forests and soaring high over mountain peaks.”

Macens is currently studying a Master of Music in Composition at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music as part of its National Women Composer’s Development Program. Over the course of the two-year programme, she is working with The Goldner String Quartet, The Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Sydney Philharmonia Choirs and percussionist Claire Edwardes, as well as a variety of other soloists and ensembles.

Macens, whose compositional style is influenced by both classical popular music genres, has been composer in residence with the Sydney Youth Orchestra and Trinity Grammar School and has received both national and international commissions for a variety of ensembles. She has recently had choral works performed by The Song Company and Gondwana treble choir Cantorum. On August 31, Canberra Symphony Orchestra will present the world premiere of her work The Nottingham Poet for Flute and Harp, written for flautist Virginia Taylor and harpist Alice Giles.

Flight will be performed by the Willoughby Symphony on September 16 and 17 as part of the Nature concert at The Concourse, Chatswood.