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Some music has to be seen and not just heard. Brisbane-based Topology's east coast tour gave us a live, working band with a casually theatrical and jazzy spontaneity you might not be expecting. Real Time Magazine
YouTube ID: topologyrob.
Formed in 1997, the band's line-up remains the same today, comprising double bass, saxophone, piano, violin and viola. Its impressive discography includes many originals and works by Riley, Nyman, Grandage, Adams and others.
'A lush, gorgeous sound world of energetic movement' - The Courier-Mail
Topology creates musical experiences that are both sophisticated and inclusive, taking contemporary art music beyond specialist scenes, and to take a leadership role in building a world-class dynamic collaborative music community based on sharing, cross-fertilisation and respect.
Our works will take part in wider cultural conversations, making authentic, considered intellectual contributions beyond the context of art music audiences. Our performances are immersive and seamless, making use of theatrical and staging elements to take audiences beyond the limitations of repertoire-based chamber music into new experiences that engage on emotional and intellectual levels, often with humour and multi-layered allusions. They respond to audiences and work to include listeners as crucial participants. They move beyond limitations of genre and context to communicate on many parallel levels, delivered with compelling musicianship.
Topology works across genres in order to explore new territories in music. They collaborate with a range of artists from a wide-ranging fields including (but not limited to) comedy, pop, jazz, experimental arts, indigenous arts and classical chamber music. Their music grapples with complex themes and multi-layered ideas involving politics, philosophy and contemporary life, often with a great sense of fun, within the context of 'real ensemble virtuosity'.
Topology's principals are Christa Powell (violin), Bernard Hoey (viola), Kylie Davidson (piano), Robert Davidson (bass), and John Babbage (saxophone). The instrumentation is distinctive and highly flexible, allowing a wide range of possibilities and stylistic approaches, particularly when extended by Topology's expertise.
National and International Profile
Topology is increasingly recognised as one of Australia's leading new music ensembles. Our energetic, full-blooded sound continues to invigorate and reward participants with exceptional experiences. Topology has built a solid audience, and regularly performs to sold-out houses around Australia. The group's concerts and recordings are broadcast nationally by the ABC.
Through its evolving repertoire, the ensemble has given a wide range of performances, from experimental Fluxus music at the Queensland Art Gallery to the Sydney Olympic Arts Festival, playing nightly The Marriage of Figaro, directed by Neil Armfield and starring Geoffrey Rush. In between shows, we performed the opening concert for the Sydney Spring Festival (where we received Best Ensemble Award in 1999), and were resident ensemble at the University of Western Sydney. Currently artists-in-residence at the Brisbane Powerhouse, Topology has performed sold out shows with the likes of Kate Miller-Heidke, The Kransky Sisters and percussion duo Karak (from TaikOz).
Topology won 2009 APRA/AMC award for Outstanding Contribution by an organization for the 2008 Brisbane Powerhouse series.
Topology continues to work with and consult with many international composers, including those from Canada (Tim Brady), the UK (Andrew Poppy, Michael Nyman, Jeremy Peyton Jones), the US (William Duckworth, Terry Riley, Steve Reich, Philip Glass, Carl Stone, Paul Dresher) and with many Australian composers.
As well as producing new shows which we tour nationally, Topology has been engaged by many festivals and organisations, including the Olympics Arts Festival, Brisbane Festival, Sydney Spring Festival, Brisbane and Queensland Biennials, Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Musical Asylum and Brisbane International Film Festival. We look forward to performing at the Queensland Music Festival in 2009 and the International Society for Contemporary Music World Music Days Festival in 2010.
Topology tours nationally each year, and has toured Canada and Indonesia. Plans are afoot to tour the UK and Europe in early 2012.