Juliana Kay –
Composer and Musician
What is your musical background?
I started singing in choirs when I was five years old and never stopped. After high school I went off to Middlebury College in the USA to study Geography and Portuguese, but somehow ended up spending half my time singing in choirs and small ensembles, eventually getting drawn into conducting and directing. I now teach music at Canterbury Girls’ Secondary College, assistant-conduct Exaudi Youth Choir, and direct the project-based group Choral Edge. A lot of my values and preferences as musician stem from the excellent training and musical opportunities I had as a teenager through the Young Voices of Melbourne, for which I am eternally grateful.
What is your advice to singers performing your works?
Make it your own. Play with it. Conjure up the emotional world of the piece and share it with your audience.
What are your favourite pieces you’ve composed?
When I started writing Songs No Longer Sung it came out very easily. Ideas and words and melodic fragments that had been stewing at the back of my head for several years suddenly seemed to come together into a song that felt important for me to share. I am also proud of my sassy SATB arrangement of Hole in the Bucket (A Marital Dispute) as it was the first piece I was brave enough to finish and have performed, and it made people laugh.