Elliott Gyger’s work explores a purely musical sense of drama and narrative, and the multilayered interplay of music and text, in a fluent and highly refined lyrical modernist idiom. He has taught at the University of Melbourne since 2008, where he is currently Associate Professor of Music (Composition).
Major works include concertos for E flat clarinet (A wilderness of mirrors, 1996), celesta (Angels and Insects, 2010), tenor saxophone (Smoke and Mirrors, 2014) and prepared piano (From Joyous Leaves, 2015); an hour-long solo piano cycle for Michael Kieran Harvey inspired by Dante, Inferno (2013); and six vocal chamber works for Halcyon, of which giving voice won the 2013 Paul Lowin Song Cycle Prize. His “dialogue for orchestra” on air was awarded the Sydney Symphony 80thAnniversary Composition Prize.
Elliott has written two highly successful chamber operas, in collaboration with librettist Pierce Wilcox. Fly Away Peter (2015), based on the David Malouf novel, was presented by Sydney Chamber Opera in Sydney and Melbourne. His adaptation of Peter Carey’s Oscar and Lucinda (2019) is a co-production between Sydney Chamber Opera, Opera Queensland and Victorian Opera; it premiered in Sydney in July 2019, with future seasons planned for Brisbane and Melbourne.