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2 April 2024

Recipients of the 2024 MOMENTUM Commissions announced

Aaron Wyatt; Christine Pan Image: Aaron Wyatt; Christine Pan  
© Jessica Bader Photography; Ester Maria Photography

Christine Pan and Aaron Wyatt have been chosen as recipients of the MOMENTUM Commissions.

An initiative of the Australian Music Centre, the MOMENTUM Commissions aims to connect creators with private philanthropists and provide new opportunities for the creation of new music. The latest round of the Commissions, supported by Hendrik Prins, called for proposals for a solo or small ensemble work expressing a theme which resonates with the composer.

Two works were chosen from a competitive pool of submissions, based on a demonstration of technical capability, creative vision, and the authentic candour of their proposal.

Composer Christine Pan (NSW) will write a new work for solo bass clarinet, exploring bioacoustics and the impact of noise pollution on birdlife. On receiving the Commission, she said, "I'm grateful for this chance to explore bioacoustics' intersection with technology and environmental awareness through the bass clarinet's expressive colour palette. Drawing inspiration from current research data, I am excited to see how science can meet music through the virtuosic potential of a solo instrument."

Christine's newly commissioned work will follow a growing portfolio of music that spans across gaming, science, palliative care, film, and theatre.

Aaron Wyatt (VIC) will compose a new work for a chamber trio, exploring themes of reconciliation and Indigenous identity in light of the recent referendum defeat. As a person of Noongar, Yamatji, and Wongi heritage, Aaron's work will interrogate what it means to be Australian in the modern era, and how Australia can confront the demons of our colonial past. He says, "It's a great honour to be chosen for this commission, and I look forward to being able to contribute to the rich and vibrant landscape of art music that we have in this country. It's invaluable to have organisations like the Australian Music Centre championing this part of our cultural heritage."

The work will see a development of Aaron's music practice, for which he is also known as an accomplished violist and conductor.

In addition to funding the composition of new music, this round of the MOMENTUM Commissions will also support a premiere performance for the two works, to be held in Melbourne in late 2024.

Since its conception in 2020, the MOMENTUM Commissions has funded the creation of new works by Australian composers including Rae Howell, Anne Cawrse, Nicole Murphy, Elizabeth Younan, Reuben Lewis, and Helen Svoboda.

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