Ross Edwards on Being an Austrailan Composer – In Conversation With…

Being an Australian composer to me it’s
a bit intangible. I know I’m supposed to be, and people keep saying wow, you’re so
Australian and I think.. ‘Am I?’ In some ways I suppose, it depends on how they think
of being Australian. I don’t sort of swill a lot of beer or go
to the beach and stuff, but I do… there is something intangible is the word, that
I am feeling Australian but I don’t quite know what it is and if I were to know I might
become a bit nationalistic and that’s not a nice thing. A sense of place has always been important
to me. When I was living overseas as a postgraduate student I got very depressed about not being
here and yet I wanted to be there so I was totally confused, but when I did come back
I realised this is where I wanted to be and wanted to relate to this place, and then I
used to start wandering off into the bush and sort of, what’s the word… communicating
with it. And um, so yes, a sense of place is very important,
but I don’t want to be parochial. You’ve got to start somewhere otherwise it’s just
an international mess, I think. It can be. But you are, there’s a focal point, you
are grounded in a particular place, but you’re looking at the world from that perspective.
That’s how I think of myself, and I’ve got bits of other cultures coming in all over
the place but they’re relating here. And that’s what society is, after all.

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