Lyle Chan : Associate Artist
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Photo: Matt Hardy
Lyle Chan's compositions are known for their combination of intellectual rigor and powerful emotional impact, even for audiences unaccustomed to classical music.
His unusual approach to writing music results in perpetual works-in-progress with only one work per genre (see www.lylechanmusic.com for a deeper explanation).
The works have been performed by, amongst others, the Sydney Philharmonia Choir, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, conductor Alondra de la Parra, soprano Taryn Fiebig, pianist Simon Tedeschi, Australia Piano Quartet, Seraphim Trio, New Sydney Wind Quintet and especially Acacia Quartet, the ensemble with whom he enjoys a unique, longstanding and symbiotic relationship.
Lyle Chan is best known for three works. His most 'notorious' composition is Wind Farm Music, Dedicated to Tony Abbott, a commission from human rights lawyer Julian Burnside that continues to attract prime media coverage. The work that first brought him widespread recognition was Rendezvous With Destiny for narrator and chamber ensemble, commissioned by the Art Gallery Society of NSW for performance by the Hon. Bob Carr, former Minister for Foreign Affairs. His most personal and confronting work is his 90-minute String Quartet, a memoir of his years as an AIDS activist in the 1990s. It was hailed by American composer John Corigliano as 'a serious and deeply felt work of art born out of a seemingly endless plague'.
In 2015 the Queensland Symphony Orchestra and the Song Company both present world premieres of major new works by Chan, the latter in collaboration with writer and cartoonist Michael Leunig.
In 2014, Lyle Chan's String Quartet: An AIDS Activist's Memoir in Music, was performed in several capital cities in Australia and included in the International AIDS Conference. It was greeted by superlative reviews in The Australian and The Age, with Limelight magazine calling it 'a crushingly powerful work of musical history … A towering piece'.
In 2013 he received two Australia Council new work grants to write a saxophone 'choral concerto' for Michael Duke and an avant-garde work for the NOISE.
Lyle Chan holds a Bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where he studied under Conrad Pope, J. Peter Burkholder and the Pro Arte String Quartet. He spent over a decade at ABC Classics, where as Artists, Repertoire and Marketing Manager he spearheaded the production of over 200 recordings, including every winner of the Best Classical category of the ARIA Awards between 1998 and 2008.
In addition to being a composer, he is also a fully qualified neurolinguistic coach and hypnotist (Master Practitioner and Trainer) and passionately pursues personal growth for himself and others. His 'adventures' in personal growth frequently form the basis for his musical compositions.
Lyle Chan's AIDS Memoir Quartet is represented by Jacqueline Thomas-Piccardi of Cinque Artist Management.
Lyle Chan — current to November 2015
Awards & Prizes
|2017||Art Music Awards: Work of the Year: Orchestral||Winner||Serenade for tenor, saxophone and orchestra ('My Dear Benjamin')|
||Smoke Weather Stone Weather : string quartet||Commissioned by The NOISE.|
|Sonata No. 5 : from Six Sonates for Diverse Instruments (2018)||Commissioned by Australian National Academy of Music for the Debussy Centenary 2018|
|Serenade for tenor, saxophone and orchestra ('My Dear Benjamin') : from 'Voices and Instruments' (2016)||Commissioned by Queensland Symphony Orchestra.|
|Love is always born : from Voices and Instruments (2015)||Commissioned with the assistance of Kathie and Reg Grinberg.|
|Wind farm music, dedicated to Tony Abbott : a quodlibet for piano trio (2015)||Commissioned by Julian Burnside.|