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Tim Dargaville : Represented Artist

Music can take your breath away. Render you speechless for a time. That's the kind of experience I strive to create...

Random Audio Sample: Canticles (solo piano) by Tim Dargaville, from the CD Australian piano miniatures


Photo of Tim Dargaville

Photo: Rosalie Hastwell

Tim Dargaville is an award winning composer with a national and international profile whose music is a distinctive voice in recent Australian contemporary music. Central to his creative work is a nurturing of authentic musical expression that embraces diversity and reimagines the ordinary.

Recent compositions explore intercultural experiences in imaginative ways - in particular, the kolam series (2007 - ongoing) connects the composer's direct learning of the South Indian vocal percussion art form of konakkol to the Tamil mandala making tradition of kolam, resulting in a series of interconnected compositions for solo, chamber and orchestral ensembles. Other works take a more personally poetic stance - Lost Pages from the Book of Memory and Forgetting (2017) reimagines the string quartet as a dissolving sonic mandala, providing a container for an expressive remembering of his late mother Rosemary and her disappearance into dementia.

Compositions include work for the concert platform, as well as music and sound design for theatre productions, and have been acclaimed by audiences and critics alike, being described as virtuoso showpieces "loaded with compositional integrity" (Joel Crotty,The Age). International recognition has been received with performances at the Warsaw Autumn Festival (Warsaw, Poland), the Unerhorte Musik series (Berlin, Germany), the East-West Music and Dance Encounter (Bangalore, India), the Wigmore Hall Masters Series (London, UK), and the Rotterdam Bach Festival (Rotterdam, the Netherlands). Recent international premieres have taken place at the 2018 World Saxophone Congress (Zagreb, Croatia) and the 2018 May Residencies (Graz, Austria). In 2018 Tim Dargaville was a special guest presenter and visiting artist at Kunst University's Doctoral School for Artistic Research in Graz, Austria

In Australia, music has been broadcast on ABC national television, featured in the Melbourne and Sydney International Festivals, awarded the prestigious Albert Maggs award, the Jean Bogan prize and an Ian Potter Music Commission. Compositions have also been nominated for both Sounds Australian and Green Room Awards for best new work. In 2017 a composer portrait concert titled "Speaking in Tongues" was held at the Salon at the Melbourne Recital Centre, and broadcast nationally on ABC FM.

Collaborations have occurred with internationally renowned oboist Diana Doherty, Adishakti Theatre Arts Laboratory (India), The Melbourne Theatre Company, The Australian Virtuosi, and acclaimed pianists Michael Kieran Harvey and Bernadette Harvey. Publishers include Red House Editions, Reed Music, The Keys Press, and La Trobe University Press, and recordings have been released on Universal, ABC Classics, Move Records, and the Divine Art (UK) labels.

Also a highly regarded music educator with a longstanding career in tertiary and secondary education, Tm Dargaville has taught in the faculties of the Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music, Monash University, the Victorian College of the Arts, the Music Department of La Trobe University, the Australian Institute of Music, amongst other educational environments. He is currently based at the University of Melbourne, completing a PhD in music composition and teaching at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music.


Tim Dargaville — current to August 2018

Awards & Prizes

Year Award Placing Awarded for
2014 Albert H Maggs Composition Award First Prize Between Breath and Word
2003 Ian Potter Music Commission Commission Rubia
1999 Jean Bogan Prize for Piano Composition Winner Negra I

Selected Commissions

  Work Commission Details
Digital sheet music sample Water has no equal : for soprano saxophone and piano (2018) Commissioned by Michael Duke and David Howie
Digital sheet music sample After and before : for flute/alto flute, clarinet/bass clarinet, piano, violin, cello (2017) Commissioned by Laila Engle.
Digital sheet music sample Lost Pages from the Book of Memory and Forgetting : for string quartet (2017) Commissioned by Ironwood Chamber Ensemble.
Digital sheet music sample Between Breath and Word (octets: flute, oboe, clarinet, harp, piano, violin, viola, cello) (2016) This work has been commissioned for 2014 Albert H Maggs Composition Award, with generous support provided by the Faculty of the Victorian College of the Arts / Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, University of Melbourne
Digital sheet music sample Kolam : for saxophone quartet (2012) Funded through Pozible.
Soundtrack for the Melbourne Theatre Company production of "Tribes" (dramatic music) (2012) Commissioned for the 2012 MTC production of "Tribes"

Analysis & Media

- Video: After and before, by Tim Dargaville