About Me

A little about me…

I’ve had a varied career in and around classical music since completing my music degree at the University of Queensland in 2004. There I majored in composition and musicology (after starting out as a trumpet performance major), and then I hung around for a couple of years playing the trumpet, writing music, and tutoring undergraduate students in music history and theory (I also fell into a lecturing job for two semesters on The History of the Broadway Musical – never let anyone tell you ‘fake it till you make it’ isn’t a thing!)

All the while I dreamed of being a full-time composer, and was lured by the promises of the film and TV industry to write the kind of music that appealed to me. So in 2009 I did a postgraduate degree in Screen Music at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School in Sydney, which is now my home town.

What followed was several years of trying to make it as a freelance composer. I wrote music for theatre and dance, corporate videos (the one about the waste disposal unit was my favourite), television documentary series, innumerable awful short films and a couple of good ones, and a few TV commercials. It was a very unstable and uneconomic career for me, though, so at the same time I worked a number of odd jobs: a ‘staging assistant’ for the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra, a printer/copyist (mostly printer) for a professional Orchestrator, an internship with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s Communications Dept, a freelance journalist for various magazines and websites, and I had a great job working in the Artistic Planning department of Musica Viva; the world’s largest chamber music organisation.

Looking back on it now, I feel very lucky to have seen the classical music industry from so many different angles.

These days I compose rarely and only for pleasure, and I work full time as a Producer at a classical music radio station. So I’m deep into the repertoire, and discovering more every day.

and a little about this site.

Make no mistake, I love this thing we call ‘classical music’, and I love that my job is to put as much of it out into the world as I can, every day of the week. I don’t want to get into ‘why’ I love it so much (because the reasons are boring and predictable), but what fascinates me is, where exactly does this music fit in our modern world? What does classical music mean to us in the 21st century? What do we get out of it? What does going to a classical music concert represent these days? And, the million-dollar question, what is the future of this art form?

These are some of the key questions I want to seek out answers to in this blog. My approach is to look at classical music as a historical-cultural phenomenon, tying in its contextual and technical history, but also bringing in philosophical, political and economic concepts to take a ‘big picture’ look. I’m a wide reader and have long been fascinated by philosophy, cultural theory and economics, so I’m really excited to bring all of my favourite subjects ‘under the one roof’, so to speak.

I hope you enjoy.

Robert Clark