Bio

Dan Thorpe

Composer // Performer // Creative

Bio.

… a pianist and performer with a special interest in queer work, and work with a focus on the theatrical and performative. He trained classically through his teens, before injury gave him an out from playing dead white men. The work he performs now celebrates his broken and queer body, rather than further battering it into a ninteenth century mould. He has been described as having “no respect for the culture of pianism” [Audience Feedback, 2019],  as well as “one of Adelaide’s most exciting young performers” [The Thousands].  He has performed in some pretty cool places, like Spectrum (NY), Praça Das Artes (Brazil), The Center for New Music (SF), the Red Rattler (NSW), Oakland Freedom Jazz, a raft on Elizabeth Quay (WA), and the lobby of Portuguese luxury hotel Estalagem da Ponta do Sol (I bled all over their piano, which they were weirdly fine with?). His work as a performer has been documented by Laundry, ABC New Waves Podcast ([1], [2], [3], [4], [5]), Making Waves/Making Conversations. He was awarded Best Emerging Artist by the Adelaide Critics’ Circle in 2016 in acknowledgment of his work as a performer and composer. He also performs in Stereo//Mono with Melanie Walters, primarily on electronics.

… a composer whose work “decimates the boundaries of genre” [Cut Common]. The work he is most proud is the pieces he’s made in collaborations across disciplines and artforms; like 2015’s personwwhowatchestoomuchtelevision — in collaboration with poet Rhys Nixon and the contemporary dancers of Concrete Collective, or 2016’s front pockets, back pockets, jacket pockets — the 2016 Soundstream ECF winning song cycle using the poems of Stacey Teague. That’s not all he enjoys making, though; he’s also particularly proud of From Above (commissioned by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra), false cognate (commissioned by the APRA AMCOS Art Music Fund, and performed dozens of times around the world), and untitled (limp wrist) (for Decibel + an untrained mover). Dan’s work has been performed around Australia and the world, by musicians like the Australian String Quartet, Ensemble Offspring, the West Australian Symphony Orchestra, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, unassisted fold, Conrad Tao, and Kupka’s Piano. His work has been presented as part of highSCORE Festival, Æpex Ensemble’s Soundsystem Takeover, and Freshminds Festival. In the latter, his Debussy Remixes (2015) were finalists for best mixed media work; he has also been honoured as a finalist in the SA Music Awards for his release Homecoming (Three Years Later), as the recipient of Best Emerging Artist award by the Adelaide Critics’ Circle in 2016 in acknowledgment of his work as a performer and composer, and named South Australia’s Young Achiever of the Year in Arts and Fashion in 2018. He sometimes writes on commission, but prefers to work collaboratively with performers. He holds a Bachelor of Music (Composition)  from the University of Adelaide, with honours and a Master of Philosophy in Sonic Arts from the same institution. He was a 2018 Carclew Fellow, and has received project and commission funding from APRA AMCOS, Carclew, and The Helpmann Academy.

… a noisy queer with thoughts an opinions (but not in a Morrissey way, it’s ok). He has written for The Lifted Brow ([1], [2]), and presented research at Electroacoustic Winds Conference (Aveiro, PT), Totally Huge New Music Conference (WA), ACMC, TENOR (co-author), as well as student-run congresses and presentations. He has facilitated workshops about listening and field recording for young people at Carclew, developed, taught an industry-readiness curriculum at the University of Adelaide (2014-2017), and worked as an ITAS Tutor (2013-2015). He is on the scientific committee for TENOR 2019.

… a working class queer who works in hospitality. Be kind if he forgets to email you, he’s probably making, like, a dozen espresso martinis or something. He lives, writes, and exists primarily on Kaurna Land, and acknowledges the never-ceded sovereignty of elders past, present and emerging. Australia always was, and always will be aboriginal land.