Ronan Apcar [Age 16, NSW]

Composition: Fanfare for the hidden call

My name is Ronan Apcar. I was born in Sydney in July 2000 and have lived here my whole life. I attended Willoughby Public School, before going to St Pius X College, Chatswood from years 5 to 10.  This year I joined the Sydney Conservatorium High School to finish my schooling.

I first discovered music at age 8 when I began to teach myself the piano, and in the following year I took up the trumpet in the Willoughby Public School band. I slowly began to take an interest in composition, and now I primarily study composition.  At the Conservatorium, I am a double major in composition and piano, and a minor in trumpet. On the side, I used to train acrobatic gymnastics for many years up until 2015, and now I work part-time as a gymnastics coach.

Composition Inspiration

When I was thinking about how I would open this piece, I thought about what makes a fanfare what it is. I sort of came to a conclusion that fanfares are attention-grabbing pieces. Thinking about pitch material, a lot of fanfare or fanfare-like pieces are so dominated with perfect fourths and fifths (take the opening of Also sprach Zarathustra by Strauss or Fanfare for the Common Man by Copland). So I thought that I should write my fanfare based on fourths and fifths. The opening is a solo trumpet call using a limited interval set of fourths and fifths, which is answered by a second call from the French horn, but this time accompanied with harmony built off fourths and fifths. I wrote this with the original bell cue from the Sydney Opera House in mind – which is a minor third. So I decided that I would answer the opening call with the bell cue that has been ‘hidden’ in the music – or at least it’s not too obvious I think. That’s why I chose the title of Fanfare for the Hidden Call.