Alexander Lau (Age 14), Castlecrag NSW

Composition: Beyond the Clouds

Hi my name is Alex and I am now 15 years old. I play violin and have mainly taught myself the piano. I have been composing for two and a half years but despite it being a short period of time I have learnt a lot. I guess my learning was accelerated by my interest which meant I composed frequently and tried seeking answers to my composition questions through self-directed study. By composing excessively in my early years, it meant I had more experience than most early composers and I would go through thought processes that could only come from experience. At first I started composing contemporary classical music for a Youtube channel, first notating it by hand then transcribing it to garageband for better sound quality. I then started to write film music for a short film that one of my friends directed. Soon after, I was soon invited by the Nova Youth Orchestra to write music for their string orchestra. And most recently, I have composed music for a string quintet which I run at school.

Composition Inspiration 

The fanfare that I have composed, Beyond the Clouds, has multiple sources of inspiration. Originally, this piece was part of a suite but I soon separated it as I did not deem it suitable. I was inspired by the night of New Year’s eve (2014) and I wrote the second movement (Midnight Nocturne) on that very night. Later, I composed Beyond the Clouds as the first movement which reflects the explosive and exciting nature of fireworks. On top of that, I was also intrigued by the power of orchestral sound. Originally, I wrote only chamber music but now I wished to harness the energy of exciting orchestral works like Overture to Rienzi by Wagner and Piano Concerto No.1 by Tchaikovsky and use it in my fanfare. Composing this fanfare has been an exciting part of my composing career and I look forward to future endeavours.