“A choir is such a wonderful creative resource,” Coro Innominata Musical Director Sally Whitwell says.
“Iʼve got around 30 smart, funny, enthusiastic musicians in mind but thus far Iʼve only just scraped the surface of what they are capable of creatively. This program is going to bring it all out into the open. Canʼt wait!”
The program aims to facilitate close collaboration between composers and choristers, developing new material under the expert guidance of Sydney composer Jessica Wells. It is hoped that the creative relationships forged during the program will extend far into the future, creating a body of work that the composers and ensemble may really call their own.
“I wanted to focus on working with women composers specifically, to be proactive about redressing the balance,” Sally says.
“There are so many reasons why women, historically and socially, have not been supported in their desire to create music. Things are improving so much for gender equity in composition these days, but there is still a way to go. We want to be part of that change for the better.”
Stimulus for the creation of the new works comes in the form of Spanish mystic St Teresa of Avilaʼs sprawling philosophical/theological text The Interior Castle.
Composers and choristers will create seven interludes around a mass by Tomas Luis de Victoria; the interludes taking us on a journey through the seven rooms of the mind to reach what St Teresa believed was the ultimate communion with the creator.
“Weʼre very open to all manner of applicants,” Sally says.
“Thus, there is no age restriction on this program. Nor is there any restriction around the type of music that applicants have experience in writing. People with PhDs are just as welcome as ukulele strummers and bedroom producers and experimental yodellers. It’s the approach to the stimulus that’s important, and utilising the instrument of a chamber choir to the full. Being open to developing skills in collaborative writing is key, so weʼre not interested in deskbound composers. Everyone will be getting their hands dirty!”
Applications are open now and close 23 May. For more information, visit the website.