Making Conversation – original release

Making Waves is delighted to invite you to support a new endeavour, the Making Conversation: Australian Composers’ Project!

We’re raising funds to produce a podcast and video series of interviews with composers around Australia. While Making Waves will continue to release a playlist each month showcasing Australian music, this special project will enable listeners to get to know composers through their own words about music and creativity. With your help we can create an accessible and engaging archive for composers, their colleagues, listeners, musicians, researchers, music educators and students to enjoy and share.

As part of the project, a member of our team will be sent to each state and territory between 2016-2017 to interview and record conversations with predominantly emerging composers. An initial series of 8 podcast/vodcast recordings (representing each state and territory) will be released online mid-2017 for our audience to freely view and share. If this initial series is well received we hope to continue to expand the Making Conversation interview collection in the future.

What are some of the things you might learn in a composer interview? Here are some of the things we’re curious about:

What How Why Where

Our interview series aims to bring a human and somewhat vulnerable back-story to a music that is so often presented as a polished whole, accompanied by succinct program notes, a slick photo and a bio full of accolades. Making Conversation has the potential to grow into a rich online archive of behind-the-scenes stories, raising the profile of a diverse and talented generation of contemporary Australian composers in their native medium, the online space.

We’re really excited about branching from curating into producing new content. Interview formats may vary between one-on-one and panel conversations. Podcasts/vodcasts will interweave spoken word and visuals with the music. The Making Conversation series will be made available on popular audiovisual and social platforms making it easy for listeners to subscribe via their favourite service.

Visit to
support Making Conversation and find out more.

Composers, if you’re interested in taking part and being interviewed for this project, please email an expression of interest to with the subject line ‘Making Conversation EOI’.

If you think you might be able to offer in-kind support (eg accommodation, loan of recording equipment), we encourage you to get in touch via email with your ideas.

creative_partnerships_australia_colThe Making Conversation: Australian Composers’ Project is supported by Creative Partnerships Australia through MATCH. Thanks to Creative Partnerships Australia’s MATCH program, every dollar you give to this campaign will be matched dollar for dollar, provided we reach our campaign target of $4000.

Meet the Team

We’re delighted to introduce the following talented individuals who will join the Making Conversation interview team:

Leah BlankendaalLeah Blankendaal loves new music. She loves talking about it, writing about it, and making it. All of this informs what she does. Before relocating to Melbourne in 2015, Leah completed a Bachelor of Music and a Master of Communication Studies at the University of Western Australia, where she was awarded the Dorothea Agnus Memorial Scholarship. Here she worked on the large scale music & photography installation A Thousand Facets, which was premiered at Kurb Gallery in 2013. Currently Leah writes for CutCommon and has written previously for artsHub, Xpress Magazine, the New Zealand Musicological Society and the Musicological Society of Australia. She produces Music in Melbourne and presents Australian Sounds on 3MBS.

Sascha KellySascha Kelly is a conductor, singer, writer & broadcaster. As her day job, she works in community radio, as Subscriptions Coordinator at 3MBS Fine Music Melbourne. She graduated from a Bachelor of Music majoring in Euphonium in 2010, and moved to Melbourne in 2013 to complete her Honours year in conducting. As a broadcaster, Sascha currently presents Music in Melbourne on 3MBS and writes for Limelight Magazine. Sascha has a passion for communicating about classical music and is a podcast nerd.

Chris WilliamsChris Williams is a graduate of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and completed a M.Phil in composition with Robert Saxton at the University of Oxford in 2013. Chris has been commissioned by Carnegie Hall, where he worked with Kaija Saariaho. He was one of six composers selected by Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, then Master of the Queen’s Music, to attend his Advanced Composition course at the Dartington International Summer School in England. Chris’ work has been performed by The Song Company, The Melbourne and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras, the Cavaleri Quartet and The Australian Voices. In 2015 he was the inaugural Friends of the National Library of Australian Creative Arts Fellow.

Lisa CheneyLisa Cheney is a composer currently completing her PhD at The University of Melbourne with Dr. Elliott Gyger. She holds a Masters degree from the Queensland Conservatorium of Music where she studied with Gerard Brophy and Dr. Gerardo Dirie. Cheney was awarded the 2014 Silver Harris and Jeff Peck Prize for Composition and had works performed by: The Southern Cross Soloists, The Australian Voices, The Queensland Conservatorium Symphony Orchestra, Plexus, The Sydney Antiphony, The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, The Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and The Australian Ballet. Cheney is a partner and co-curator of Making Waves.

Peggy PoliasPeggy Polias is a composer and music typesetter based in Sydney. She holds a Master of Music (Composition) from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, where she studied with Professor Anne Boyd. Polias has had works performed and workshopped by Kammerklang, Ku-Ring-Gai Philharmonic Orchestra, Halcyon, Chronology Arts, and at the Australian Youth Orchestra National Music Camp and Canberra International Music Festival. Polias is a is a partner and co-curator of Making Waves.

Matthew LorenzonMatthew Lorenzon is a journalist and musicologist specialising in art music of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. His academic work combines theoretical and philosophical speculation with music analysis and archival research.He holds a PhD in musicology from the Australian National University with a thesis on the interaction of music and philosophy in Antagonisme, a chamber work by Xavier Darasse on a text by Alain Badiou. Matthew edits the Partial Durations blog and podcast. As a journalist he believes in critics maintaining a dialogue with musicians and audiences to help foster mutual understanding.