Skip Links
Close Search


Ensemble Offspring: Composing Songlines

This special concert places First Nations musical voices reflecting land, nature, history and deep culture at the forefront of living art music in Australia.

In the Utzon Room | Sydney Opera House Presents | Classical Music

“The connection between performers was palpable and a joy to watch.” 



Composing Songlines: A celebration of First Nations composers

Celebrating the unique music which has been created by First Nations Australian composers in the past 5 years as part of Ngarra-Burria: First Peoples Composers program, this special concert featuring the compact chamber force of Ensemble Offspring places these ancient musical voices reflecting land, nature, history and deep culture at the forefront of living art music in Australia.

Curated and performed by Ensemble Offspring, Composing Songlines features chamber music works by celebrated First Nations composers including Rhyan Clapham (aka Dobby - Murrawarri), Troy Russell (Biripai/Gamillaroi), Nardi Simpson (from the Stiff Gins - Yuwaalaraay), Brenda Gifford (Yuin) and Eric Avery (Ngiyampaa, Yuin, Bandjalang and Gumbangirr).

A special Q&A session with the artists led by Sydney Opera House Head of First Nations Programming, Beau James, will follow the performance. 

We recognise all the significant partners in the creation of Ngarra-Burria including Moogahlin Performing Arts, Australian Music Centre, Eora College and Australian National University and we pay our respects to the traditional owners of the land on which the Sydney Opera House sits, the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation.

Nardi Simpson Of Stars and Birds flute, clarinet, vibraphone (2020)
Nardi SimpsonBlaktopia flute, clarinet, vibraphone, cello (2020)
Nardi SimpsonWilga’s Last Dance arr. flute, clarinet, vibraphone, cello (2019)
Brenda GiffordPlover Bird flute, bass clarinet, vibraphone, cello (2017)
Brenda Gifford Bardju alto flute, bass clarinet, vibraphone, cello (2017)
Brenda GiffordMungala for flute & percussion (2019)
Rhyan ClaphamPitara Yaan Muruwariki (2017)
Troy RussellNucoorilma flute, clarinet, vibraphone, cello (2017)
Troy RussellHymn Tune flute, clarinet, vibraphone, cello (2018)
Troy Russell New Home flute, clarinet, vibraphone, cello (2018)
Eric Avery Gliding for flute, clarinet, vibraphone, cello (2020)

Claire Edwardes, Percussion/Artistic Director
Jason Noble, Clarinets
Lamorna Nightingale, Flutes
Freya Schack-Arnott, Cello

Please note: This concert will be recorded.

Presented by Sydney Opera House

To me, Ensemble Offspring are intrepid pioneers; they are expert instrumentalists, flexible and adaptable, and they seek out and present profoundly engaging art music moments. The group’s superb dynamic paired with evocative and powerful First Nations compositions will make this a stand-out in Utzon Music in 2021. 

Casey Green, Utzon Music series curator

Meet the Musicians

Venue Information

Performances are being sold to 100% capacity in line with the NSW Public Health Order. This includes all shows in the Joan Sutherland Theatre, Studio, Playhouse, Drama Theatre and Utzon Room. Please note that you will be seated directly alongside other ticketholders.

Our foyers will be open 60 minutes pre-show for Joan Sutherland Theatre performances, and two hours pre-show for Western Foyer venue performances. Refreshments will be available for purchase from our theatre bars. Please remember to maintain physical distancing whilst consuming drinks in our foyers.

All Sydney Opera House foyers are pram accessible, with lifts to the main and western foyers. The public lift to all foyers is accessible from the corridor near the escalators on the Lower Concourse and also in the Western Foyer via the corridor on the Ground Level (at the top of the escalators). Pram parking will be available outside the theatres in the Western Foyer consistent with COVID-safe rules.

Frequently Asked Questions - COVID-19 Safety Measures

Frequently Asked Questions - Performance and Venue

You may also like...

The Phantom of the Opera
Pre-sale now open!
Experience the phenomenon of one of the most successful musicals of all time, when Cameron Mackintosh’s “simply epic” new production of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s legendary show makes its Sydney Opera House debut.
House Warming
House Warming
04 Jan 2022 - 16 Jan 2022
Join us in opening our Centre for Creativity with a House Warming party! Come explore artist Rosie Deacon create a series of sculptures and installations that will grow to be bigger and better over the week.
Celebration Gala
25 Nov 2021 - 03 Dec 2021
An exhilarating celebration of talent and commitment, The Australian Ballet presents the many facets of ballet in their return to the Sydney Opera House.

Make your gift

Your gift opens the Opera House to everyone in the community.

Give now