Performances, Works and Recordings

A full list of works is available as a PDF on request. I’m happy to send scores and recordings (if available) for specific works via email. Please email me at andrew@vordenker.com.au.

Milestones

These are moments (works, workshops, experiences) that really led me to think about my artistic practice the way I do now…

  • A Repeated text - 2019

    I was asked to make a 10 minute work with a deadline of 2 days for a variety night performance evening at PACT theatre in Erskineville. “A Repeated Text” has a voiceover that gives the audience instructions which aim to lead them to question barriers of etiquette and desire. About half of this work is my own sound design, the other half is a track by Moby and all of it was my choreography, with some directional help from Dean. This was my first solo performance work. 10’

  • Adventurous Bodies - 2019

    To make my work more available to be auditioned by prospective collaborators in physical theatre and dance, I decided to release an album called Adventurous Bodies which features music written for such works. It’s a self-release and available on all major digital distribution platforms. It was a weird experience to put together because listening to work I’d written 6 or 7 years ago is really confronting - I’ve changed so much since then!

  • Remote Control - 2018

    A 2 hour ‘performed archive’ by Dean Walsh for the Brand X “Flying Nun” series. I wrote a lot of music and sound design for this gig, and designed/operated the tech for it. It’s an incredible journey into a 3 decade long career that traversed many significant moments in time, as well as shifts in pubic attitudes towards sexuality and masculinity.

  • Proxima - 2018

    I was asked to make an experimental music work for this performance night, so I teamed up with Ben Hinchley again, but this time forming a new name to call ourselves; Flœk. We use the audiences’ phones as the PA system and our phones as control devises using datafeeds of live heartrate, movement, touch and proximity in a work about what it means to be ‘together’ and ‘apart’. This first rendition was 30 mins long, and very problematic. We’ve had further developments of it since, but this work was significant as it was a duo work that I’d co-devised using sound, technology and movement as intrinsic to the development and piece as a whole.

  • Threshold:NRC - 2018

    Dean was asked by PACT to make a work to sit in a double bill with Cloe Fournier. He made “Threshold:NRC”, for which I did a bit of sound design but a lot of stage management and studio assistant work. This piece was my first full experience of Dean’s abilities, and my first back-stage experience of a “professional level” full length performance art piece. It was hard yakka given the resources at hand, but he made a monumental work. It’s being developed again in 2019.

  • Vignettes of Identity - 2017

    Immediately after Exile Nothing, I collaborated with visual artist Guy James Whitworth by sitting for him as a life model and making a performance work for his exhibition. I worked with Dean and Ben and James Beck (cellist from the AAQ/SAQ) to make a piece incorporating text (sung/spoken), costume elements, blocking/choreography, about different aspects of sexuality, gender and identity.

  • Exile Nothing - 2017

    When I met Dean Walsh over skype in late 2017, we decided to start making work together… and began making “Exile Nothing”. Dean and I became romantic partners very quickly. He is a much more senior artist and is constantly ‘casually’ teaching me as we make work, hold workshops or simply creatively ‘play’ together. “Exile Nothing” is still in development, it’s a full length piece (60 mins) about child sex abuse, domestic violence and parental neglect, and is a duo between Dean and I. In it I sing a song I wrote whilst at Gallop House called “Meth Song”, and the soundscore is still being decided on entirely.

  • Australian Art Quartet (now known as Sydney Art Quartet) - 2016-2017

    The AAQ (or now, SAQ) premiered my string quartet work “27” whilst I posed as a nude life model for visual artist Wendy Sharpe to create murals of. My nude durational still performance (sure, let’s call it that) reflected on the music composition’s own premise; that of dissecting and revealing my deeper sense of self (albeit that the performance of it was 2 or 3 years after the composition of the music).

    The “27” performance was so successful that the AAQ invited me to their Bundanon development later that year to make a new work… so I made “30/31” with them - a co-devised piece using improv, movement, costume, staging and technology.

    These two experiences, the performance of “27” and the making of “30/31” really set me up for where I’ve found myself to be - combining my interests in performance art and sound/music composition.

  • Sarah Dowling’s and Andrew Morrish’s workshops at Strutt - 2016-2017

    These workshops were a major influence that deepened my interest in the “theatre” side of “physical theatre”. In both I experimented with areas of expression I didn’t know I had available to me.

  • Bodies in Motion - 2016

    A work of dance and electronic (fixed media) music, this was the first piece I wrote music to that I also performed dance to. It was part of Strut’s “advanced contemporary” class showing. There were about 12 dancers following a scored improv to my music, myself included. 5’24

  • Gallop House - 2016

    I was the inaugural composer in residence at Gallop House (Prelude Foundation, Bundanon Trust), Perth. This residency was for 6 months, which was followed by a short 2 months residency at the Mattie Furphy writer’s cottage in Perth. During this time I took the plunge to pursue my interest in performing, and took up singing lessons and dance lessons. The dance lessons at Strut really shook me through my core, and I found myself falling in love with movement. I would, from then on, begin to transform my practise to incorporate movement and improvisation.

  • Relentless City - 2016

    Plexus Trio commissioned a work by me for their event at the Metropolis Festival in Melbourne that had to be about “cities”. So I composed a work that used live data feeds of the weather and of the performer’s heart rates to make a work that would be bespoke to each city it is ever performed in. The data triggers responsive poetry and various aspects of soundscape. 10’

  • Catharsis - 2015

    Building on my collaboration with Ben, when I was commissioned by the Australian Piano Quintet, I immediately composed a piece with multiple dynamic tempi that referred to the performers’ live heart rate as that tempo. The work itself was me nutting out some frustration or anger about something (I can’t remember what) so the heart, its chakra, neural-physiological connections, is what this piece is all about. 15’

  • Your Warped Distant Call - 2015

    I was approached by double bassist Elsen Price for a new work, so I made him a monster. This 24 minute electroacoustic duet for double bass and mandolin established my creative partnership with Benjamin Hinchley - I wanted to do a whole bunch of electronic effects and for me to operate it remotely during the concert, and Ben helped me with the software. 24’

  • Give me the Night - 2014

    This piece made me feel like “a real composer” for the first time… mainly because of the cultural cringe in Australia, many of us feel/felt that we need overseas recognition to be a ‘real’ anything. So when I was accepted into the Ochest de Ereprijs young composer workshop, I was over the moon. I loved writing this work, and was inspired by the facilitators, but my style didn’t appeal to the ensemble as a whole so the romance was short lived. 4’.

  • Sky Earth Bird - 2014

    My first work for a much larger choir, and made up by kids. This was a significant work for me because I got to practise devised composition methods with the kids - stuff I’d always wanted to try out but never really got many chances to do. I still use the working methods that I’d developed during this composition. 9’

  • Song of the Virtues - 2013

    A huge commission by the Song Company, easy brief; “Write the music that the angels sing to keep the universe intact”…. …. so I teamed up with Chris Mansell for words again and Roland Peelman (the conductor) grilled me more than I’d been grilled to date on my technique, but it was really worth it. This work toured with their Christmas season that year. 8’

  • Morphic - 2013

    My first major work for dance was for Sarah-Vyne Vassallo’s “Morphic” coproduced between Chronology Arts and Dirty Feet. Almost entirely electroacoustic but using a lot of samples of my own acoustic music, the full score’s about 30 mins. It was performed at the Seymour Centre.

  • 27, 28, 29, 30/31 - 2012-2018

    This is a series of string quartet works I wanted to be about coming of creative maturity. What I discovered is that instead they became a musical interpretation of the turmoil or elation I was experiencing during the age the title reflects… AND a reflection of the development of my technique… which these four works definitely do. 27 I wrote during my masters, and it’s very conventional… I won’t give you an analysis of each, but it ends with 30/31 where I integrated movement, staging and technology into the composition.

  • Seven Stations - 2012

    Commissioned by Charles Davidson, with help from ArtsNSW (Create) and quite a few favours, I collaborated with poet Chris Mansell to write a song cycle centred around various train stations in Sydney. The song cycle was recorded and released by Hospital Hill records.

  • “E” - 2011

    Alicia Crossley and I have shared a long friendship, which really began when she commissioned this work from me in 2008. One of the first “professional” works I’d written for acoustic instrument with fixed media electronics. 4’30.

  • Inspirational Gift - 2009

    A commission by Penny and Greg, I started musical portraiture with this piece… I got to know Penny well over a year and wrote a piece about her. A mixed 5 piece ensemble, flute, clarinet, viola, saxophone, cello. 17’30.

  • Quintessence - 2008

    This was a Chronology Arts project. We had 5 quintets of 5 different instrumental families and presented 5 new works for them. I (delightfully) ended up with the string quintet. Quintessence featured an approach to writing I’d been working on in another significant work (Inspirational Gift) - music portraiture. I wrote about 5 very significant people to my life at the time; my partner Rudson, Charles Davidson who’d supported Chronology’s genesis, my friend and guide Roland, my best friend in the whole world (who I could never see) Laura and a man I loved and worked with very closely, Alex. 20’50.

  • Chronology Arts - 2007-2014

    I established Chronology Arts with Alex Pozniak, who I met during MODART. Together we made so many concerts and commissioned so many works that I cannot remember them all… it’s all a blur now. We had 6-8 events a year with 4-10 commissions for each event over a 7 year period. We played our own works but mostly works by other emerging composers. We had a residency at the Seymour Centre for a number of years, and collaborated with DirtyFeet on a dance/music collaboration.

  • Les Mots - 2007

    The first Chronology Arts concert was in November 2007. Straight after MODART, Alex and I decided to put a massive concert on with only 10 weeks notice - ‘easy mate’…. we did an open call out and just selected compositions in whatever instrumentation…. 15 works and 25 performers later, I’d learnt a few things about producing!!! For the occasion, I wrote “Les Mots”, which as a love song for my then-partner, Rudson. It was later re-interpreted by Roland Peelman and Jessica Aszodi, but I am still enamoured by the baritone sax writing in the first version, though Jess’s version has a really cool woodblock rhythm…. 8’

  • <<click your username.>> - 2007

    “To begin, click your username”. Whilst I was beginning to produce concerts and music in France I discovered I was accepted into the MODART program by the Song Company. I wrote <<click your username.>> about gay online dating… the song was a “hit” I thought as it was broadcast here in Australia as well as in New Zealand.

  • Enfer En Paradis - 2007

    Straight out of uni I went traveling and lived in Cannes (France) where I created "Enfer en Paradis” a string quartet work for a concert I put together with local musicians the the “herberge de jeunesse”…. it’s like a long-term youth hostel. It’s a piece that juxtaposed the ‘red carpet’ sect and the relatively poorer (working middle class, recent immigrants, etc) on the other side of the main road in Cannes.

  • A few really important classes during Undergrad - 2003-2006

    Michael Smetanin. Ivan Zavada. Judy Bailey. Matthew Hindson. Anne Boyde. Mary Finisterer. Peter Blamey. Amanda Cole. Jessica Wells. Simone East. Richard Toop. … and to my colleagues who let their innuendo run wild with me as we started SECS (the Sydney Eclectic Composers Society). Marshall McGuire, Roland Peelman. These amazing people, teachers and artists gave me unforgettable lessons. Of course, there were others who gave me the subtle grounding needed for the composition I’m now capable of; Daryl Pratt, Jason Noble, Lewis Cornwell, David Larkin…. I wanted to list 3 or 4 ‘big important lessons’ but the more I thought about it the more I realised how impossible that would be…. all these lessons were important, if not then then certainly they are (to me) now.

  • Getting accepted in to the Sydney Conservatorium’s Bachelor of Music (Composition) - 2003

    I’d never really felt that the other students at school could really understand me - a few did, but most didn’t. When I got to the Con I found Everyone was really enthusiastic about what I loved - music being a major part of that. By the end of the degree though it was obvious that although we may have gone in with similar passions, we all left on our own terms and very individualistically.

  • Gabriel’s Oboe on mum’s stereo - 1992

    I was 8 years old. When I heard the oboe solo for the first time, I got spine tingles. I was enraptured by the music. Written by Ennio Morricone, this work (from a film called “The Mission”) has caused many people to take up the oboe - it’s beautiful. This moment inspired me to make experiences that gave the same feeling of rapture to others. I was fortunate to have a great composer and a beautiful empath as music teachers in high school, and encouraging parents.

  • Born - 1984