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Margaret Brandman : Represented Artist

I compose music that is uplifting, positive or meditative for peace and harmony on the planet.

Random Audio Sample: Firestorm : full orchestra by Margaret Brandman, from the CD Sensations

Photo of Margaret Brandman

Photo: Linda Jocelyn

Born, in 1951, into a family that owned and operated a music studio, Margaret Brandman naturally became fascinated by music. From the age of four she studied accordion and piano, taking up guitar and clarinet in her teens. Her education, supported by formal studies in piano, clarinet, harmony and composition at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, covered many styles of music.

Brandman was awarded a scholarship to the University of Sydney, where she studied composition with Peter Sculthorpe. In 1975 she was awarded a Bachelor of Music (Composition), having already acquired her Associate Performer degree and Teacher of Pianoforte Diploma. She has since also been awarded the F.Comp.ASMC, F.Mus.Ed.ASMC and L.Perf.ASMC degrees by the Australian Society for Musicology and Composition, Hon.FNMSM (UK) and the Dip.E WPTA.

Many of Brandman's compositions have received concert performances and radio broadcast. Undulations for String Orchestra, published in Germany by Furore Music, has been performed in Germany, Switzerland and Sydney. Her Saxophone Quartet has been performed many times in Sydney and in 1997 at the Donne in Musica Festival in Italy. Images and When Spirits Soar were performed at the Festival of Women's Music in Sydney. Lyric Fantasy for Piano and Strings was premiered by the Musica da Camera orchestra with soloist Colin Forbes in Canberra in 1999. The late Aaron McMillan performed and recorded the piano work Sonorities on his Arc of Light CD.

Brandman's song cycle Songs of Love and Desire co-written with lyricist and mezzo-soprano Desire Regina has received airplay several times on 2MBS FM. Spirit Visions for two pianos was premiered at the Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre (JSPAC) in Penrith in 2009, and Autumn Rhapsody concert piano solo was premiered by the composer at the World Forum concert in the UK in 2012. Following the performance of this work, Brandman was presented with the World Forum's Distinguished Contribution Award for the continent of Australia.

In November 2013 the 'Rhapsodies to Rhumbas' concert was staged at the JSPAC. A team of ten musicians and two singers performed Brandman works from the contemporary classical genre, through to music with Latin American rhythms and finishing with Brandman's jazz-influenced works. Audience member Benita Rainer commented: 'your music made me feel happy and the feeling lasted a full 24 hours!'.

Brandman has also gained international recognition through her pioneering of a holistic approach to music education. Her extensive educational catalogue includes Accent on Music (high school text) and her Contemporary series method books.

In 2012, she received the Diploma of Excellence in Piano Pedagogy, from the World Piano Teacher's Association in Serbia, for her educational DVD presentation The Geometry of the Piano and the Symmetry of the Hands.

Books, scores and recordings of Brandman's work are available from the Australian Music Centre. Published works are also available from all music retailers.

Margaret Brandman — current to January 2014

Selected Commissions

  Work Commission Details
Sonorities (unaccompanied piano) Commissioned by Selma Epstein
Binna burra dreaming : for violin and piano (2013) Commissioned by Duo Deconet.
Jucaro rhumba d'amor : for violin and piano (2012) Commissioned by Duo Deconet.
The Eastern Spinebill and the Sulphur-Crested Cockatoos herald a Blue Mountains bush fire : for violin and piano (2012) Commissioned by Duo Deconet.
Lyric fantasy (piano with string orchestra) (1996) Commissioned by Selma Epstein.
Saxophone quartet : saxophone quartet (1976) Commissioned by the Sydney Saxophone Quartet