Exploring the personal and cultural experiences that have shaped the creative output of one of Australia's foremost composers, this fascinating study begins in a Russian enclave in northern China, progresses through student days in Sydney and San Francisco, and culminates with Sitsky's present position as Professor of Composition at The Australian National University in Canberra. The many influences on his work, including important professional and personal relationships with such eminent persons as the poet Gwen Harwood and the violinist Jan Sedivka, are discussed in detail as are the sources of much of the inspiration for Sitsky's compositions, now numbering close to 200. Of interest to scholars, students, and anyone interested in 20th-century music. In addition to presenting Sitsky's fascinating life story and expounding on the central position he has occupied for the past 40 years in Australia's musical culture, this important work provides for the first time comprehensive bibliographic references to all of Sitsky's compositions, his writing, his recordings, and his appearances as a pianist and lecturer on music.
The book is a most valuable addition to any collection, for it is both a work of reference and a compelling story of the development of one of the most eclectic, visionary, and confronting artists of his generation.
ROBYN HOLMES is Head, Department of Literature and Materials of Music, Canberra School of Music, The Australian National University. As Head of academic teaching and research programs, Holmes is the vanguard of Australian music scholarship.
PATRICIA SHAW is Lecturer, Department of Visual and Performing Arts, Australian Catholic University. Shaw's areas of specialization include the study of Australian music and cultural studies, with a focus on contemporary composition.
PETER CAMPBELL is a Researcher and Lecturer at the Canberra School of Music. He has a degree in musicology and is presently researching Australian choral traditions and composition.