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Ian Cugley (1945-2010)

Random Audio Sample: Sea changes : opera by Ian Cugley, from the CD Dreams & desires

Photo of Ian Cugley

Photo: self-portrait by Ian Cugley

Ian Cugley (1945-2010) came to prominence through his 1960s orchestral works Pan, the Lake and Prelude for orchestra. Prior to his move to the UK in the 1980s, he was active in Tasmania where he composed, taught music and computing at the University of Tasmania, and worked as a percussionist with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra. The orchestra also premiered Cugley's Violin Concerto (1977), commissioned by the Tasmanian Conservatorium of Music for Jan Sedivka.

Since his move to the UK, and partly due to his deteriorating health, Cugley no longer considered himself an active composer. 'I used to be a composer, reasonably well recognised in my own country, but I don't do that now and I tend not to dwell on the past', he stated on his website.

Former composition teacher, Peter Sculthorpe, regarded Ian Cugley as one of his most talented students. Cugley's Pan, the Lake, recorded by the Sydney Symphony Orchestra for EMI in 1968, was based on a theme from Sculthorpe's Irkanda IV.