Fire Dances

Fire Dances is a suite for piano trio, collaboratively written by eight Australian women composers, once from each state and territory. The suite was commissioned through the support of a Fresh Start Grant, funded by ABC Classic during 2020. The grant enabled the composition of this new work, a recording studio session at the ABC, airplay for the completed recording on ABC Classic and a commercial digital release of the work via ABC Music.

Eight Australian women composers were invited by The Muses Trio to compose a short dance movement, inspired by the Australian wildfires of 2019-2020. These pieces reflect upon our relationship with the land and reveal our own responses to an environmental tragedy. The work includes creative voices from every state and territory of the nation. Natalie Williams initiated the project in May 2020.

The dances may be broadcast or performed individually, however in that instance, reference must be made to the Fire Dances suite. If the whole suite is performed, the musicians may choose the order of the dances. 

The Muses Trio choose to perform the suite in the order below, creating a build in intensity to the Kats-Chernin piece, In the Ember’s Path, followed by the first signs of regeneration (Cycads after Fire), before concluding with the voice of the youngest composer, Isabella Gerometta, representing the generation that will have to bear the brunt of the climate crisis.

Listen to an interview with the Muses on ABC

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Featured Composers


Haze for Days, Nat Bartsch

Haze, Olivia Bettina Davies

Crowning Dance, Natalie Williams

Wall of Flames, Maria Grenfell

Fire Storm, Hilary Kleinig

In Embers’ Path, Elena Kats-Chernin

Cycads After Fire, Cathy Applegate

Will-O-Wisp, Isabella Gerometta