The Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra has announced the participants for the Australian Composers’ School for 2022 and 2023. The four chosen composers will spend two years being tutored by some of Australia’s most accomplished composers and workshopping their own works with the TSO.

The participants selected from Australia-wide submissions include two Sydney-based composers, Angus Davison and Georgia Scott, and two Melbourne-based composers, Thomas Misson and Sam Wu.

Australian Composers' School
Angus Davison, Thomas Misson, Georgia Scott and Sam Wu. Images supplied

Davison, who is currently completing a Masters degree in composition at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, is a Sydney-based composer and music educator. His music, described in Limelight as having a “bright energy”, has been played by local groups such as Ensemble Offspring, as well as internationally in Europe and the US.

Scott, who completed a Bachelor of Composition at the Royal College of Music in London, has had her work performed extensively in Australia by the Sydney Symphony Orchestra among others. Her one-act opera Her Dark Marauder was premiered by Sydney Chamber Opera as part of the Sydney Conservatorium’s Composing Women Program in 2021.

Misson, whose work Glow has been performed by the Australian Chamber Orchestra Collective, is currently completing a Masters of Music in Melbourne. His work has also been performed by Ensemble Offspring.

Wu has completed studies at the Julliard School and Harvard university. His work has been performed by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, the China National Symphony Orchestra and the Sarasota Symphony Orchestra among others.

The Australian Composers’ School aims to provide experience and opportunities for young composers, giving them the chance to have larger-scale orchestral compositions performed by professional musicians.

The program is overseen by Matthew Hindson, the Director of the School, who will be joined by Maria Grenfell and Holly Harrison next year, and Jessica Wells and Paul Stanhope for 2023, who will tutor the four participants.

“The panel was very impressed by the overall standard of applications to the Australian Composers’ School, which included applications from composers at the beginning of their career to those who have already had residencies and substantial high-profile opportunities with professional orchestras,” said Hindson. 

Over the two-year course, the participants will be guided in writing various styles of orchestral music, starting with the more traditional before shifting to more commercial styles (like film scoring) and more collaborative projects in the second year of the course. They will spend one week each year intensively workshopping their compositions with the TSO, focusing on their own specific voices as young composers.

“It was a challenge for the panel to narrow down the field to just four successful applicants, but some general points that stood out were the diversity and strength of each composer’s individual musical voice, their current and future career history and trajectories, their potential for contribution to orchestral writing in diverse forms, and their solid technical foundation underpinning general compositional craft including harmonic, rhythmic, structural and colouristic imagination,” said Hindson.

More information about the program and its four new participants can be found here

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