How four Indigenous composers reshaped musical history

Four Indigenous composers demonstrate how a piano – an artefact of colonisation – can be a tool for unification.

Despite having different cultural backgrounds and experiences – Indigenous composers with an Indigenous mentor, and a pianist descended from Anglo-colonial history – it is nevertheless possible to create a project that can serve as a focus for unification and strength.

In our instance, the trigger was a relic of the past. Specifically, an historical object made at a time of great significance for Australia: a square piano built around 1770, housed in the keyboard archives of the School of Music at ANU.

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