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Ross Edwards : Represented Artist

Edwards's distinctive sound-world fuses shapes and patterns from nature with a variety of musical resources which reflect and celebrate Australia's cultural diversity.

Random Audio Sample: Veni creator spiritus : for string orchestra by Ross Edwards, from the CD White ghost dancing


Photo of Ross Edwards

Artist website: http://www.rossedwards.com

Influences, styles: Landscape and Nature

One of Australia's best-known and most performed composers, Ross Edwards has created a distinctive sound world which reflects his interest in deep ecology and his belief in the need to reconnect music with elemental forces, as well as restore its traditional association with ritual and dance. His music, universal in that it is concerned with age-old mysteries surrounding humanity, is at the same time connected to its roots in Australia, whose cultural diversity it celebrates, and from whose natural environment it draws inspiration, especially birdsong and the mysterious patterns and drones of insects. As a composer living and working on the Pacific Rim, he is conscious of the exciting potential of this vast region.

Ross Edwards's compositions include five symphonies, concertos, choral, chamber and vocal music, children's music, film scores, a chamber opera and music for dance. His Dawn Mantras greeted the dawning of the new millennium from the sails of the Sydney Opera House in a worldwide telecast. His compositions often require special lighting, movement and costume. A recipient of the Order of Australia and numerous other awards, he lives in Sydney and is married with two adult children.

Recent commissions include Sacred Kingfisher Psalms for The Song Company, Ars Nova Copenhagen and the Edinburgh Festival; a Piano Sonata for Bernadette Harvey commissioned by the Sydney Conservatorium; Full Moon Dances, a saxophone concerto for Amy Dickson, the Sydney Symphony and the Australian symphony orchestras; Five Senses, a song cycle for female voice and piano to poems of Judith Wright; The Laughing Moon for the New Sydney Wind Quintet; Zodiac, an orchestral ballet score commissioned for Stanton Welch by the Houston Ballet; String Quartet No. 3, Summer Dances, commissioned by Kim Williams for Musica Viva Australia; and Animisms, for the Australia Ensemble.

Frog and Star Cycle, a double concerto commissioned for saxophonist Amy Dickson, percussionist Colin Currie and the Sydney Symphony had its resoundingly successful premiere in the Sydney Opera House in July 2016. Bright Birds and Sorrows, a major work for Amy Dickson, saxophone, and the UK based Elias Quartet, will be premiered in April 2017 at the Musica Viva Festival in Sydney. He has recently completed Entwinings for the Australian Chamber Orchestra, to be premiered in October 2017.


Ross Edwards — current to August 2016

Selected Commissions

  Work Commission Details
Ecstatic dance : orchestra Commissioned by HUSH Music Foundation.
Madegascan song : chamber orchestra Commissioned for Sydney Soloists.
Arafura arioso : arranged for guitar and cello (2016) Arranged for guitarist Rupert Boyd and his cellist wife, Laura Metcalf
Melbourne arioso : for solo guitar (2016) Commissioned by Melbourne Recital Centre.
Digital sheet music sample Sea star fantasy : for solo piano (2015) Commissioned by John Porter as a special tribute to his friend and partner Ann Wesley-Smith
Digital sheet music sample Animisms : suite for five instruments (2014) Commissioned for Australia Ensemble.

Analysis & Media

Kit: Dance with nature : the chamber music of Ross Edwards / music resource kit by Philip Cooney.

Kit: White ghost dancing : orchestral music by Ross Edwards / music resource kit by Philip Cooney.

Kit: The chamber music of Ross Edwards / written by Stephen Lalor.

- Article: Contrasting Composers Committed To Local Music

- Document: Ross Edwards

- Document: Composer profile – Ross Edwards, A Natural Way

- Program note: Ross Edwards' "Maninyas: Concerto for Violin and Ochrestra"

- Document: Ecstatic Dance/Edwards

- Document: Edwards - Maninyas – Concerto for violin and orchestra

- Document: Edwards - Maninyas – Concerto for violin and orchestra

- Article: Dawn of a new world symphony

- Article: In Meditative Mode

- Article: Risks in offering Ross Edwards to the young

- Review: The Song Company 18 October 1992

- Review: Lament for A The Song Company 21 March 1993

- Program note: Flower Songs Ross Edwards

- Review: The Song Company: Music and the Environment 23 April 1993

- Program note: Martin Wesley Smith 50th Birthday Concert

- Program note: Southern Cross Chants

- Review: The Song Company Songs Signs and Stars 2 December 2004

- Review: The Song Company Songs, Signs and Stars

- Video: Ross Edwards's "Prelude & Dragonfly Dance"

- Program note: Ross Edwards' "Raft song at sunrise"
by Ross Edwards
Source: the score of this work

- Program note: Ross Edwards' "Water Spirit Song"
by Ross Edwards
Source: the score of this work