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Mark Pollard : Represented Artist

I love everything about music. I am attracted to many styles of music and my style is responsive to what inspires me at any one time. For me composition is about what really tickles my fancy at that moment and expanding this sensation into a new work.

Random Audio Sample: Carillon for Sacha (solo piano) by Mark Pollard, from the CD Australian piano miniatures

Photo of Mark Pollard

Photo: GiuliaMcGauran


Australian composer Mark Clement Pollard has an eclectic compositional style utilising such diverse materials as improvisation, jazz, pop and the indigenous musics of South East Asia.

His work has been released on nine compact discs including A Handful of Rain, a collection of his ambient works. His music is broadcast and performed widely in Australia. Internationally his work has been included at many major festivals including the Warsaw Festival and the Tokyo Nova Festival.

In 2003 he completed a Bass Clarinet Concerto for the brilliant Dutch performer Harry Sparnaay and, in 2007, his Electric Guitar Concerto was premiered with critical acclaim at the final gala concert of the 2007 Darwin International Guitar Festival. His Beating the Rusty Nail for violin and piano was premiered at the 2008 Perth International Arts Festival, and his Gunnai Dreaming was premiered at the 2009 Parliament of World Religions.

Site-specific elements feature in many of his works. These have included Sounding the earth for the Melbourne Museum, Sounding out Andy for the National Gallery of Victoria, the drumming dunnies for the Port Fairy Spring Festival, and with every step for the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

In 1983, Pollard received one of the inaugural Jacobena Angliss Music Awards. In 1992 he received the Albert H. Maggs Composition Award and, in 1993, the Spivokofsky Composition Prize. In 2001 he received one of the inaugural VCA Teaching Excellence Awards, in 2006 a VCA Incredible Colleague Award for outstanding contribution to the VCA community and, in 2009, a University of Melbourne Universitas21 teaching Fellowship. In 2008 Mark Pollard received the AMC /APRA Classical Music State Award for long-term contribution to the Advancement of Australian Music.

In 2011 he was an invited speaker at the Conference for Inter-disciplinary Musicology in Glasgow and guest composer in residence at Green College Vancouver where he created new work and mentored a group of VCA composers in the Resonating Spaces project at the Museum of Anthropology. In 2012 he completed Schubert 3 for the Reconstructing Schubert project and a new large-scale orchestral work Silent Spring: five sound images inspired by Rachel Carlson's powerful book of the same name.

In 2013 he collaborated with animator Paul Fletcher on the large scale site specific work Resonating Spaces: The Ian Potter Museum of Art creating a series of three installed animations. In 2014 he continued this work with Resonating Spaces: The Melbourne ZOO involving 42 composers and 11 animators. Also in this year he completed Fanfare for the Danish Tour which was premiered in Copenhagen and had his work The Heavenly Muzak Machine tour Norway, including performances in prisons!

Mark Pollard — current to November 2014

Teacher/Influence on

Taran Carter (1999 - 2001)

Sebastian Harris (2001 - 2004)

Evan Lawson (2007 - 2009)

Anthony Lyons (2001 - 2002)

Christine McCombe (1993 - 1994)

Andrián Pertout

Mark Viggiani

Awards & Prizes

Year Award Placing Awarded for
1992 Albert H Maggs Composition Award First Prize View from the beach

Selected Commissions

  Work Commission Details
Digital sheet music sample A thousand steps from sunrise : for trombone octet of 6 tenor trombones and 2 bass trombones (2015) Composed for the Slider Asia Festival 2015
Digital sheet music sample Silent Spring : five symphonic images (2012) Composed for University of Melbourne Doctor of Music submission
Schubert 3 : solo piano (2012) Composed at the request of Ian Holtham for the Schubert D960 project
Digital sheet music sample The heavenly muzak machine : six miniatures for vibraphone eight hands (2010) Commissioned by Speak Percussion.
Digital sheet music sample Gunnai dreaming : for choir (S,S,A,A,T,B), 2 - 4 bullroarers and narrator (2009) Commissioned by Lavalla Catholic College Senior Choir
Digital sheet music sample Beating the rusty nail : violin with piano (2006) Commissioned with assistance from Arts Victoria for the Australia and Japan year of exchange (2006)