A string quartet commemorating controversial Mexican artist Frida Kahlo (1907 - 1954) has won its composer a place at the Australian String Quartet's National Composer's Forum in Adelaide.
Mark Holdsworth, a 20 year-old student from Fremantle studying at The University of Western Australia's School of Music, is one of only six student composers chosen nationwide. Kahlo's life of tragedy inspired Mark to write the ‘Frida Kahlo Portraits', exploring Kahlo's illnesses.
The forum gives composers the opportunity to have their pieces workshopped, performed and recorded by the Australian String Quartet. The workshops, open to the public, will take place next month under the guidance of Carl Vine. A graduate of UWA, Vine is Artistic Planning Director of Musica Viva Australia. In 2005, he was awarded the Don Banks Music Award, the highest accolade the Australia Council for the Arts can confer on a musician.
In another national win for a School of Music Postgraduate student, Daniel Masmanian (30) of North Fremantle, has been selected for the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra's September Composer's School for his orchestral work ‘Scurrilous Words'. Daniel is one of five composers selected nationwide. He composed his piece, a movement of a larger symphonic work, for entry to the composer's school. Daniel enjoys the challenge of creating pieces which allow him to focus on keeping meaning in 12-tone composition.
Meanwhile, piano performance students Siang Ching Ngu (21) of Churchlands and Sharon Chung (23) of Willetton won a $5,000 first and $1,000 second prize respectively in the recent special 10th Anniversary WA Pianists' Competition with performances of works by Liszt, Chopin and Prokofiev. Siang Ching, in the final year of her Performance Degree, was also awarded WA Pianist of the Year, while Sharon is beginning a Masters degree. Both students have plans to study at the Australian National Academy of Music in Melbourne in 2011 before returning to Perth to undertake postgraduate studies at the School of Music.
Sharon Chung (+61 4) 13 082 813
Siang Ching Ngu (+61 4) 04 256 381
Mark Holdsworth (+61 4) 09 681 190
Daniel Masmanian (+61 4) 32 482 969
Janine MacDonald (UWA Public Affairs) (+61 8) 6488 5563 / (+61 4) 32 637 716