Young musician, composer and Taree native Mitchell Brown is hitting all the right notes as he works toward his goal of becoming a serious composer of contemporary classical music and film scores.
The 21-year-old is $500 richer after finally receiving his prize for winning the Manning Winter Festival's Composer Competition, an award that was bestowed on him two years ago. The money will be used to go toward recording equipment.
It has taken this long to be presented with his winnings because of, as with most things in the past two and a half years, COVID.
Mitchell won the competition with his composition A Winter Overture, written for wind ensemble or concert band and specifically composed for the Manning Winter Festival in 2020.
He was officially presented with his award at the Manning Winter Festival Farewell at Manning Regional Art Gallery recently, an event held to mark the occasion of the winding up of the Festival for good, and to celebrate the decades of the Festival championing the arts in the Manning Valley.
Not having a wind ensemble on hand at the event, Mitchell instead played another of his compositions, Solace, a piece reminiscent of Philip Glass or Michael Nyman, on piano. Solace was borne out of the March 2021 floods.
"Our shop (Bass 'n' Blues Music) got flooded so he was pretty heavily affected by it," Tanya said.
A Winter Overture is not the first piece Mitchell has written for wind ensemble, and it is certain to not be his last.
"He's written quite a few. It's a genre that he likes because he plays with ensembles himself," Mitchell's mum Tanya Brown said.
Solace is also being arranged for wind ensemble, but not by Mitchell. Internationally known Australian conductor and composer Matt Klohs heard Mitchell playing the piece on YouTube and reached out to Mitchell, offering to arrange it for him. Once it is completed, it will be released internationally.
There are also plans afoot in Mitchell's summer holidays to record Solace, and put it together with footage from local photographers and media of the 2021 floods.
Mitchell is currently studying at the Sydney Conservatorium, the holy grail for serious music students in Australia, where he is a first year composition major.
According to Tanya, Mitchell feels right at home living at Newtown with other musicians and artists and loving the environment.
"From day one, he can't believe his luck to be there," Tanya said, adding that he has found his tribe.
Another project Mitchell is currently working on is releasing an EP of experimental compositions for clarinet. The first piece, Of Wood and Silver, a stunning work that would easily be at home as a film score, has been released on Spotify.
You can also hear more of Mitchell's work via his YouTube channel, Mitchell Brown - Musician and Composer.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can access our trusted content:
Did you know? Manning River Times online subscribers not only have 24/7 access to local and national news, sport, what's on and entertainment - they also have access to our print editions in digital format, with all the advertisements and classifieds at their fingertips.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.