Fiona Hill is a composer specialising in electroacoustics and immersive sound.
Drawing on contemporary classical and electronic art music styles, Fiona’s work often explores the dichotomy of the natural and industrial worlds to create a “powerful emotional impact” (The Advertiser).
Based in the Blue Mountains, Fiona draws inspiration from her natural surrounds and connection to place, as well as the psychological landscapes of the subjects and artists with which she collaborates.
Fiona’s recent electroacoustic work Imago – recorded as part of a collection of new Australian compositions titled Other Voices – reflected on the history of forced adoption in Australia and demonstrates Fiona’s unhesitating instinct to ‘lean in’ to challenging themes of resilience, trauma and healing. The work for flute, voice and electronics – which was a finalist in the 2020 APRA AMCOS Art Music Awards electroacoustic/soundart Work of the Year – also shows Fiona’s ability to translate unspeakable emotion into a language that bridges communication between art and audience.
Other recent orchestral works, such as Sunyata for the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra Composing Women workshop and contemporary dance film Circumstance by renowned director Sue Healey – echo this process of creating a new language out of fragments: one which unifies the central message of her collaborations.
“Music composed by Fiona Hill makes an enormous contribution to the result,” wrote critic Jill Sykes of Circumstance (SMH, 13 Dec 2020). “lt is the best match-making between commissioned music and dance that I have come across in years.”
A crossover artist in all elements of high-art composition, Fiona’s other recent works span those for electronically processed bass recorder (Lost in the Darkness for soloist Alicia Crossley’s album Bass Instincts), experimental chamber ensemble (the ‘five’-seasons-inspired Pentography, premiered by Ensemble Offspring at the Sydney Opera House Utzon Room) and electroacoustic strings (private commission Romancing the Dragon for electric guitar and acoustic strings).
Composing for diverse settings – from film and television to chamber music, orchestra, live performance, dance, theatre and audiobooks – and integrating futuristic technologies, such as gestural control devices, with organic acoustic performance, Fiona is excited by the challenges that variety, innovation and incongruence present.
“The collision of seemingly opposing artforms, sounds, ideas and techniques is, to
me, the most effective and exquisite means of exploring the human experience.” – Fiona Hill
Fiona’s work has been recognised with numerous awards, including an APRA AGSC Women in Screen Music mentorship with Elliott Wheeler (2019), APRA AMCOS Art Music Fund (2018), Ensemble Offspring’s Noisy Women Commission (2017) and an Australia Council grant to study electroacoustics at IRCAM (2009). Currently Fiona is undertaking a PhD at Sydney Conservatorium of Music with an Australian Government Research Training Program scholarship as part of the Composing Women program.
Her extensive portfolio of critically acclaimed work, along with as her background as a classical pianist (Bachelor of Music Piano Performance), professional accompanist (Sydney Dance Company, VCA, Royal Academy of Dancing) and performer (Tango band Quartito Azul) give Fiona a truly unique understanding of what artists need to say, and of what audiences want to experience.
To enquire about an electroacoustic collaboration, commission or performance with Fiona, please get in touch.