Illuminating Paradiseis a love letter to a period of change and progress and not too dissimilar to our current times – the wondrous few years surrounding the turn of the 20th century. After being approached to compose a new work by the fabulous people at Queensland Symphony Orchestra, I wanted to write a piece that showcased my love of 1900s composers and other antiquities. Before pen could be put to paper and cursor to screen, I needed to find the main musical idea that could be twisted and distorted by my evil little composer hands.

Sebastian Lingane

And as coincidence commands, I was recently researching the esoteric religion Theosophy, which was much loved by an array of famous composers and artists alike – the connection between the ‘mysticism’ of the universe and artists became my inspiration. The promise of rebirth after staggered enlightenment, the togetherness with space and time, and the ecstasy of self-made divinity is a bodacious temptation for artists wanting more for the human experience, so it’s understandable why so many...