This live recording (issued on 2 CDs) from Barry Conyngham’s 75th birthday concert in 2019 evince not just the richness and vitality of the composer’s contribution to Australian musical culture since 2006 alone (all the works featured here having been composed since then).

Barry Conyngham

It is also proof of the deep connection between Conyngham, his music and the staff and students of the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music for whom much of the music was written and who here perform it (variously as soloists, the Ormond Ensemble under Richard Davis and the Melbourne Conservatorium String Ensemble) in the Hanson Dyer Hall, with dedication and obvious affection.

Like that of his mentors Peter Sculthorpe and Tori Takemitsu, Conyngham’s music evokes a sense of (abstract) space as much as (specific) place; it also unfolds in time with a simultaneous sense of inevitability and unpredictability. Perhaps this is what it means to be fluent in feeling as much as intellect?

The initial theme of the opening concerto for chamber orchestra To the Edgehas a curiously Spanish flavour which sets up the listener for the...