Still Life

In my third year at university I was lucky enough to have my first ever choral piece premiered by the Elder Conservatorium Chorale as part of the Three Choirs Concert in the Evenings at Elder Hall concert series. Conducted by the director of the Elder Conservatorium at the time, Associate Professor Carl Crossin OAM, it was an absolute privilege to have it performed alongside works by the likes of Eric Whitacre, Benjamin Britten, and other original Australian pieces.

Set to Thom Gunn's poem of the same name, Still Life paints the somewhat unsettling image of a man on his deathbead, hooked up to life-support machines. The first and final line "I shall not soon forget" is the musical and emotional underpinning of the piece, an image burned into one's memory. This becomes a persistent, repeating thought as the music dies away.