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Tristan Coelho : Associate Artist


Photo of Tristan Coelho

Photo: Jason Catlett

Tristan Coelho (b. 1983) is an award-winning Sydney-based composer who specialises in concert music, film and multimedia projects.

With an interest in a wide range of music from experimental classical and electronic to world music and jazz, he strives for a unique balance in his scores and an individual sound for each project. This diversity of sound worlds is mirrored by the range of performance venues he has worked in, including art galleries in London, 12th-century churches in France, theatres in the Netherlands, and concert halls in Australia and the US.

In 2016, Tristan was a finalist in the Instrumental Work of the Year category in the APRA Art Music Awards.

Project highlights include read/write error, a commission for Ensemble Offspring's 20th year celebrations, Smell of the Earth, commissioned for the Canberra International Music Festival and performed by Tambuco Percussion, and works for The Song Company, the Chronology Arts Ensemble, Kammer Ensemble and recorder virtuoso Alicia Crossley. In 2012 Tristan was co-commissioned by the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and the Oz Asia Festival for the ensemble work, As the Dust Rises, with mentoring by Tan Dun and James Ledger. His orchestral debut was in 2005 with Glass Canvas performed by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Martyn Brabbins as part of the Cybec 21st Century Composers' Program.

In 2014, Tristan was invited to the Etchings Festival held in Auvillar, France where his work Ripples was premiered, and where he received lessons from Mark Andre and Beat Furrer. He has appeared at the Young Composers' Meeting hosted by Orkest de Ereprijs, the Dartington International Summer School, the NYU/ASCAP Film Scoring Workshop and the Internationale Ferienkurse für Neue Musik, Darmstadt.

Tristan's experience in music for film and multimedia is diverse, including a recently completed score for Australian feature film The Marshes (2017) and numerous other short films and advertising campaigns. Recently, his score for the King Candy Crush Saga Sweet TVC campaign was aired internationally and his work with McCann Health won him a Gold Lion at Cannes and two Gold Spikes at the 2014 Spikes Asia Festival of Creativity. His orchestration and arrangement credits include work for Japanese video game composer Hitoshi Sakimoto, Australian composer Matthew Hindson, oud virtuoso Joseph Tawadros and the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra.

Tristan graduated from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music in 2006 and went on to study at the Royal College of Music in 2007-2008. He has studied composition formally with Michael Smetanin, Damien Ricketson, Mary Finsterer, Trevor Pearce and David Sawer, among others, and piano with Stephanie McCallum.

Tristan is a founding member of Sideband, a composer/performer collective which supports emerging Australian musicians and also celebrates works by established composers. Sideband released their debut CD in 2014 and is currently producing their second album.


Tristan Coelho — current to June 2017

Awards & Prizes

Year Award Placing Awarded for
2016 Art Music Awards: Work of the Year: Instrumental Finalist read/write error

Selected Commissions

  Work Commission Details
Digital sheet music sample Smell of the Earth : for percussion quartet (2016) Commissioned by Canberra International Music Festival.
Digital sheet music sample Short Circuits (trios: flute, saxophone, percussion) (2016) Composed for Jane Bishop, Ben Carey and Niki Johnson
As the Dust Settles : for bass recorder and vibraphone (2011) Commissioned by Alicia Crossley.
Digital sheet music sample Glass Canvas : for orchestra (2005) Commissioned by Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.