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dominant SEVEN Ensemble

”Music is liquid architecture; architecture is frozen music.”    

–  Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Dominant SEVEN was an ensemble comprising of seven graduate and post graduate musicians from the Australian National University School of Music. The Canberra based group was launched in August 2004, performing at Llewellyn Hall, touring throughout the local region and was broadcast on ABC classical radio.

Since disbanded, its members included Greg O’Rourke (classical guitar/electric guitar), Harold Gretton (classical guitar), Timothy Wickham (Volin), Brett Janiec (clarinet/bass clarinet), Adam Dickson (percussion), Nathaniel Johnstone (double bass) , Geoffrey Xeros (piano) and Nicole Bates (clarinet/bass clarinet) who joined in 2006.

Its music can be described as quirky, whimsical, improvisational, utilising unorthodox objects and techniques to produce unconventional and original sounds. Alongside inhouse compositions it performed and interpreted works by well-known Australian contemporary composers including Nigel Westlake and Peter Sculthorpe. Being Canberra based it also gave a platform showcasing emerging local artists including Julian Day, Michael Sollis, and Helen Way.

In addition to having a local focus it also performed acclaimed international arrangements such as by Spanish composer Manuel de Falla (1876 – 1946).

Taking inspiration from Dominant SEVEN, The Spotted Xylophone Studio seeks to adopt the challenge of harmonising discordant and divergent ideas, concepts, and forms. Architecturally, the practice strives to embrace the unorthodox, in its methods and outcomes it produces. It adopts a critical questioning attitude, unafraid to challenge convention, if need be, to build upon and produce original architectural compositions.

As with the Dominant SEVEN, the Spotted Xylophone Studio aspires to be simultaneously locally grounded, with an Australian perspective, yet also venturing to draws upon international sources for inspiration.