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The Imaginary Aviary

Devised by Vanessa Tomlinson (concept and lead composer)

Each performer creates their own birdsong and bird calls based on the following brief. Each performer is acknowledged as a co-composer in this work. This work was commissioned by *Bleach Festival for performances in the HOTA Gallery, August 2023. It was re-worked for performances in the bush at Easter at the Piano Mill 2024. This is an ongoing work, with more species being added all the time. 

Download the score


For Ocean, Electronics and Acoustic Instruments

By Lawrence English and Vanessa Tomlinson

Supported and premiered by Bleach Festival with support from Australia Council for the Arts. June 30th, 2022. North Burleigh Headland. For 6 or more trombones, 3 or more trumpets, 3 saxophones, 3 percussion. Read more here.

Curious Tig

For The Immersive Guitar

Curious Tig is an exploration of sonic possibilities inside the new instrument TIG, premiered as part of Curiocity Brisbane 2021. Performed by Karin Schaupp and the composer, this event was live-streamed as the finale of Curiocity, and provides insight into the acoustics and sonic potentials of this new instrument.

Watch the premiere here. Please note music starts at 11'26"

Percussion at Dusk

for solo tamtam

Percussion at Dusk is a new solo work for tamtam, presented as part of Lawrence English's Listening Etudes in the Brisbane Festival 2020. As an outdoor performance piece, the composition defined the listening space through making an invisible bubble - inside you could hear the piece, outside you could watch on an wonder what was happening. The work was performed at three Brisbane locations, each with exceptional vistas of the city. The score uses the changing colours of the sky at dusk, and the shape of the cityscape to move through the material.

Further information about the performance can be found here

Download score


For solo percussion

Balance is a glimpse into our world of co-dependence; human, animal, living, above and below the ground. From an ecological perspective each sound needs to find a way to be unique, to be heard. But things also need to be in balance - and here the performer is asked to  balance to perform this work; the delicate rustle of beans with the left foot while conjuring an exquisite song from a cymbal with the hands; the scrumming of sandpaper in the feet and the infinite pitch variations of a stone tapping a metal bowl. Each act requiring physical effort, precision, balance and care.

Balance  is a solo re-working of a percussion quartet Static, inspired by months of listening and living in the Australian outback. Balance also requires intense listening as the performer, alongside acceptance, independence, respect, patience and time. This piece was commissioned and composed for Rebecca Lloyd-Jones who can do impossible things. And she knows a thing or two about balance.

This work was premiered at University of California in 2020.

For information about the score, please contact the composer.


for any number of performers playing different keyboard instruments

plus bass drum, bell, horn and shaker

premiered by Erik Griswold, Vanessa Tomlinson, Arabella Teniswood-Harvey, Michael Kieran Harvey 2019

Cycles consists of 4 independent rhythmic cycles with added punctuation from percussion - played by the keyboard players themselves.

For information about the score, please contact the composer.

Watch the premiere of this work here.

Heavy Stop

for any number of performers on any instrument

premiered by Clocked Out with Cat Hope, 2019

Heavy Stop belongs to a series of pieces that prioritise listening as the navigational tool through the composition. Starting with 5 doing words - in this case brushing, caressing, heavy stopping, interfering, and crying - the musicians build a language throughout rehearsals, and then freely explore the terrain in performance. There is no score to follow except for the sonic building blocks that the musicians have collaboratively constructed. I don't know what will happen. - V.T. 

For information about the score, please contact the composer.

Watch the premiere of this work here.

The Oxbow Soundwalk

Site-specific constellation of individual compositions by other artists.

A mega composition of other compositions in the Australian bush

premiered at Easter at The Piano Mill 2019

View the videos together, turn them on and off to create your own experience.

Lucy and Bubbles

for all 16 pianos and pianists in the Piano Mill.

Premiered 2018.

Listen here


for four percussionists

premiered by Early Warning System, Brisbane Powerhouse 2014

Download Score

Still and Moving Paper

for solo percussionist playing paper, pencils and footboys

premiered by Vanessa Tomlinson, ABC Studios Brisbane 2014

Download Score

Vibrations in a Landscape co-composition with Erik Griswold

for twenty percussionists

premiered by BaDaBoom percussion at Easter@Harrigans Lane 2017

View Video long version

View Video short version

Sonic Dreams: Extinction

for any number of performers on any instrument

premiered by Greywing ensemble, Perth 2017

Download Score

View Video with Tomlin|Fergus Duo

View Video with Clocked Out

Listen to Greywing ensemble perform the work

Watch Sonic Dreams California performed by Clocked Out and Mary Oliver


for a group of listeners

premiered at Orpheus Institute, Ghent 2013

Download Score

Intimacy/Bath of Vibrations

for unamplified music boxes/for a choir of bowed cymbals with solo piccolo

premiered at Queensland Conservatorium "Clocked Out with Simone DeHaan 

New Sounds Brisbane Festival 2017

Download Score Intimacy

Download Score Bath of Vibrations

View Video 

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