Australian composer Paul Stanhope was thrilled when the West Australian Symphony Orchestra approached him about commissioning a new concerto for trombone. “I jumped at the chance!” he tells Limelightahead of the new work’s premiere, which will see WASO’s Principal Trombone Joshua Davis in the starring role, under the baton of Asher Fisch.

“I’m often influenced by extra-musical meanings, narratives or sometimes other musics, but this time I have written a piece of pure music,” he says. “I’ve enjoyed the challenge of composing on a large canvas where only the musical ideas matter.”

Paul StanhopeAustralian composer Paul Stanhope

Other concertos under Stanhope’s belt include his 2013 Piccolo Concerto and a cello concerto, Dawn and Darkness, written in 2016 for the Sydney Symphony Orchestra with Narek Hakhnazaryan as the soloist. “With each of these concertos I’ve tried to create distinct orchestral worlds, defined by orchestral techniques and colours – for example, using oboe quarter-tone scales in the cello concerto or carting in two octaves of tuned cowbells in the Piccolo Concerto,” Stanhope recalls. “I think the cello concerto was the trickiest to manage in terms of finding balance solutions, even though it was for a...