15 November 2022
2022 Paul Lowin Prizes Winners Announced
© Maria Boyadgis
Composers Paul Dean and Elliott Gyger have been announced as the recipients of the 2022 Paul Lowin Prizes in Sydney on Monday 14 November 2022.
The Paul Lowin Prizes were presented in conjunction with the annual Peggy Glanville-Hicks Address - delivered by William Barton and Dr Anita Collins - and a performance by double bassist Ben Ward of Walimbaya by Yuin composer Brenda Gifford.
Brisbane-based composer and clarinettist Paul Dean was awarded the Paul Lowin Orchestral Prize - valued at $25,000 - for his first symphonic work, Symphony No.1, "Black Summer". Aptly titled, the work was written at the conclusion of the Australian bushfires of 2019-20 and the first few months of the COVID-19 pandemic. The symphony was commissioned by the Alex Briger at the Australian World Orchestra and premiered at their 10th birthday celebrations in 2021.
Dean's Symphony stood out among 52 entries in the prize category for its sustained intensity, powerful sense of urgency and scope. This marks Dean's first honor in the Paul Lowin Prizes.
Melbourne-based composer Elliott Gyger was awarded the Paul Lowin Song Cycle Prize - valued at $15,000 - for his work for Autobiochemistry for mezzo-soprano and cello.
Among the 44 entries for this prize category Gyger was praised for his bold use of data-driven text and an elegant combination of voice and cello.
For this work, Gyger set music to a 22-poem sequence of the same title by Sydney poet Tricia Dearborn. Autobiochemistry was commissioned by Gyger's long-time collaborators Halcyon, who will present its world premiere in Sydney in December.
Autobiochemistry marks Gyger's second win in the Paul Lowin Song Cycle Prizes. He previously won the prize in 2013 for his work giving voice and had also been shortlisted in 2019 and 2006.
Entries of the 2022 Paul Lowin Prizes reflected a wide range of
musical approaches and stylistic interpretations of the
orchestral and song cycle forms. The shortlisted composers were
also acknowledged in the prize presentation:
Anne Cawrse and
Matthew Hindson for the Orchestral Prize,
Brett Dean and
Cameron Lam for the Song Cycle Prize. Their works
can be said to represent the high standards of contemporary
Australian music composition.
The Paul Lowin Prizes are managed by Perpetual as Trustee for the Paul Lowin Trust and presented in collaboration with the Australian Music Centre.
PAUL LOWIN ORCHESTRAL PRIZE ($25,000)
WINNER Paul Dean - Symphony No. 1, "Black Summer" (2021)
SHORTLISTED Anne Cawrse - The Rest is Silence - Concerto for Cor Anglais and Orchestra (2021)
SHORTLISTED Matthew Hindson - Soprano Saxophone Concerto (2019)
PAUL LOWIN SONG CYCLE PRIZE ($15,000)
WINNER Elliott Gyger - Autobiochemistry (2019) for mezzo-soprano and cello
SHORTLISTED Brett Dean - Madame ma bonne sœur (2021) for mezzo-soprano and string quartet
SHORTLISTED Cameron Lam - The Splendour of Lying Naked in the Sun (2022) for soprano, mezzo-soprano, counter tenor, tenor, baritone, and bass.
© Australian Music Centre (2022) — Permission must be obtained from the AMC if you wish to reproduce this article either online or in print.
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