Described as ‘protean’, ‘formidable’, ‘innovative, thorough, precise and imaginative’, Sean Quinn is a composer and writer based in Melbourne, Australia. His compositional voice is driven by a sense of constant metamorphosis; music that learns, adapts and reacts to itself and its surroundings, featuring nestings of various elements, extremes of range and aptitude as well as highly gestural approaches to rhythm. It has often been described as ‘intricate’ and ‘poetic’, but also delves into darker, ‘writhing’ and intensely intimate elements of musicality.
Many of his works have been performed internationally by some of the world’s finest performers, including clarinetists Richard Haynes (CH) and Szilárd Benes (AT), percussionist Luis Azcona (CH), bassoonist James Aylward (NL), percussion collective Speak Percussion (AUS), soprano Tony Arnold (US), members of Ensemble MusikFabrik (DE), The Thinking Minds Project and the Berry College Contemporary Music Ensemble (USA) amongst others. His work incubation – commissioned by Richard Haynes – was recorded and released on the Cubus-Records CD ghosts of motion to critical acclaim – described as “a richly layered meeting of time”.
A variety of works and collaborations for a vast range of performers approach in 2021/22, with commissions from Brightwork Ensemble/Syzygy Ensemble (LA/AUS), Olinda Quartet (SY), students of the Conservatorium van Amsterdam (NL), There is no air in space (EU), Brian Ellis (CO), Ensemble Zeitstoff (DE), Tom Pfaffinger (DE), Gavin Stewart/Royal Holloway (UK) and Carl Rosman/ELISION (EU/AU) are in progress. With plans to tour Europe in 2022/23, a small series of concerts in Melbourne (2021-22) and an album to record (2022-23), Sean is an active member of the national and international music scene.
Sean is currently a student at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, studying with Elliott Gyger. In February 2021, he was invited to the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover to briefly present his work for wind instruments, as well as precept.percept.concept III workshop (.alfabet). He was a participant of the Ensemble Offspring Hatched HOME Academy in 2021 and is an Artist-in-Residence at the Chateau d’Orquevaux (France) in 2021/22 and has accepted Fellowships at the New Music on the Point Festival in Vermont (2021) and the Impulse New Music Festival in Los Angeles (2021).
His scores are published by the Paris-based house BabelScores.
He has also written as a reviewer for Fever Pitch, CutCommon and classikON Magazines.
‘Through the intricacies of the textures and timbres of incubation, Sean Quinn gives us in this piece a richly layered meeting of time. The past is not a dead thing; the future is not an abstract concept: together they coalesce as components of a living, breathing present.’ (Ian Parsons, PBS Radio 106.7FM The Sound Barrier)
‘innovative, thorough, precise and imaginative’ (Richard Haynes, clarinetist)
‘eve (I) by Sean X. Quinn, a formidable vocal soliloquy receives its world premiere. Incorporating glissandi, tongue trills, leaps of register, stammered and spoken word, Fraser performs with impressive versatility and flexibility.’ (Shamistha de Soysa – Sounds Like Sydney)
‘Some pieces explored their texts literally […] while others unwound their origins wildly, like eve (i) by Sean X. Quinn.’ (Michael Kaufmann – Limelight Magazine)