Sacred Music Waves (December 2019)

Rachel Bruerville, curator of this month’s playlist and Making Waves Intern during 2019 shares the following thoughts about this special collection of recordings:

As an introduction to the final Making Waves #playlist of 2019, ‘Sacred Music Waves’, I would like to share some somewhat rambling thoughts on ‘sacredness’, Australian music, and culture.

Our ‘Sacred Music Waves’ playlist features quite an Anglo-centric collection of music. As someone who works in the office of an Anglican Cathedral, and who is a ‘classical’ choir nerd, my bias is probably showing! The idea for a sacred music playlist came from my revelation, as a composer who had never attended an Anglican choral service before beginning work in this office, that oh my gosh! There are mass settings and motets sung every single week to a captive audience who connect deeply with the music? What an incredible thing.

But what else might be considered ‘sacred’? The theme of country is certainly a very sacred thing. In Australian music making, considering the background of our shameful history, the appropriation of First Nations artistic and cultural material by non-Indigenous Australian composers is a very fraught area. Fortunately, awareness of these issues continues to grow among the musical community, as do respectful, genuine collaborations.

This is the first playlist I’ve curated, and it’s been quite overwhelming grappling with some of these issues of sacredness, diversity, representation, and, as always, what might make our music ‘sound Australian’… as well as searching for sharable recordings through this online platform!

I acknowledge the First Nations peoples of this land I call home, and the sacred nature of this music making that continues to thrive.



Hear something that catches your attention? To find out more about a musical work, click on the track name in the playlist and then again on ‘view track’. To find out more about a particular composer, click on their name in the ‘Details’ section below.

Singscore [new music-sharing format!]

This month we have a brand new format to share music from – SingScore! Click the image above to be directed to composer Ruth McCall’s beautiful setting of Agnus Dei, and browse new Australian choral music while you’re there. You can also enquire about advertising your own scores on SingScore.


  1. Jodie O’Regan, The Morning Star 
    for soprano solo with SATB choir. Performed by Bethany Hill and the Jupiter Choir. Recorded by Ray Thomas & Peter Day.
  2. Jonathan David Little, Crucifixus
    for AATTBB choir and 2 x SSA soloists (or choirs) – with optional organ and instrumental accompaniment. Performed by Vox Futura; Heinrich Christensen, organ; Andrew Shenton, Conductor; Noel Smith, director.
  3. David John Lang, in lectulo meo per noctes 
    for SATB choir. Performed by the Adelaide Chamber Singers.
  4. Gabrielle Cadenhead, Echo 
    for poetry and solo flute. Performed by Gabrielle Cadenhead. Recorded and mixed by Liam Mulligan.
  5. Anne Cawrse, Out of the Depths
    for SATB choir. Performed by the Adelaide Chamber Singers.
  6. Rachel Bruerville, Lament for the Reef
    for piano quintet. Performed by Hilary Bruer (violin 1), Danielle Jaquillard (violin 2), Natalie Maegraith (viola), Rachel Bruerville (cello) & Robin Parkin (piano).
  7. Joseph Twist, Hymn of Ancient Lands 
    for SATB (divisi) chorus with soprano solo. Performed by the Choir of Trinity College, Cambridge.
  8. Katia Tiutiunnik, Jehanne 
    for soprano and viola. Performed by Akiko Otao (soprano) & Kailin Yong (viola).
  9. Ruth McCall, Agnus Dei
    for soprano solo, SATBarB with optional piano. Performed by The Song Company.

We’d love to hear about your listening experience! Share your thoughts or send messages of support to our featured composers and performers in the comment box below. We also encourage you to click through to Soundcloud or YouTube to like, comment and subscribe to Making Waves as well as the composers, performers, and presenters featured.

The Sacred Music Waves playlist will be featured until the 1st of February, 2020. All previous playlists from 2015 to present are available in our blog archives for the life of the project, so please do explore the website for previously featured sounds.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s