Still Oblique to the Pathétique

As published on A confession: sometimes, when I am moping along a footpath through an oncoming rush of rage-inducing text-walkers, the gaudy jackets of a team of charity fundraisers will appear up ahead and – like the markings on a poison dart frog – warn me of imminent danger. I feel the icy handContinue reading “Still Oblique to the Pathétique”

Huanchaco, Barry. Barry, Huanchaco

I’ve been watching the cats for a while, lying in the grooves of a corrugated iron roof I can see from my third-story window in Huanchaco, Peru. Lounging about in the late afternoon sun, I can count three of them in various states of feline elongation. Like the many street dogs that wander amongst theContinue reading “Huanchaco, Barry. Barry, Huanchaco”

O Bratsche, Where Art Thou?

As published on Let them eat cake. And drink coffee. And let it be free, too. This will help entice them to come to a chamber music concert on a weekday morning. Ah geez, of all the barnacles clinging to our cultural memory bank, I’ve gone for the one with connotations of aristocratic condescensionContinue reading “O Bratsche, Where Art Thou?”

Stuck In The Mimir With You

It’s a tough gig being a composer nowadays. Just imagine, a piece you’ve written for string quartet is programmed in a concert at a festival, in this case the Texas-based Mimir Chamber Music Festival in its Melbourne iteration at Melba Hall. That’s brilliant, you think. I hope they enjoy it. What else is on theContinue reading “Stuck In The Mimir With You”

Don’t Leave Me Alone

As published on It had been a rough week, if you remember. On the Monday, Leonard Cohen added his name to 2016’s long list of casualties, a list soon joined by the Democratic Party, Hillary Clinton’s wardrobe of blue pantsuits and any faith in humanity you’d held onto after Brexit. As the days rolledContinue reading “Don’t Leave Me Alone”

The Sound of One Penny Dropping

As published on   The eyes gave him away. They’re hidden on the back wall of the hall, in amongst the cartographic wood panelling of which the warm, red lighting makes you feel like you’re an ember in the cosy heart of a fireplace. But I found them. His grotesque lips and the manyContinue reading “The Sound of One Penny Dropping”