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Red Contributor

Michael Norris

Composer, Performer, Presenter

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Born: 1973


Michael Norris is a composer, software developer and music theorist. He teaches composition, sonic arts and post-tonal music theory at Te Kōkī New Zealand School of Music and is editor of Wai-te-ata Music Press and Co-Director of Stroma New Music Ensemble. He is the recipient of the 2001 Mozart Fellowship, the 2003 Douglas Lilburn Prize, the 2010 Trans-Tasman Composers Award, the 2012 CANZ Trust Fund Award, and the 2014 SOUNZ Contemporary Award. He has participated in composition courses featuring composers such as Peter Eötvös, Alvin Lucier, Christian Wolff and Kaija Saariaho.

Performers of Michael's work include the NZ Symphony Orchestra, Roberto Fabbriciani, Michael Houstoun, the NZ String Quartet, NZTrio, Barbara Lüneburg, Lars Mlekusch, Duo Stump-Linshalm, Richard Haynes, the Viennese Saxophonic Orchestra, Ensemble Offspring, Stroma, the Israel Contemporary Players, Ensemble Reconsil (Vienna) and the Ensemble Pierrot Lunaire Wien. In 2010, the SWR commissioned a new chamber orchestra work, which was premiered at the Donaueschinger Musiktage 2010, conducted by Peter Eötvös. Michael's suite of real-time audio effects, 'SoundMagic Spectral', is widely used in both industry and academia worldwide, and by artists such as Aphex Twin and Brian Eno.

Composed (54)

14 Islands

for flute/bass flute, percussion, and prepared harp, 10m


electroacoustic work, 11m


for solo piano, 5m


electroacoustic, 10m

Ars Moriendi

for bass clarinet duo, 5m


for flute and piano, 5m


for mixed chamber quintet, 11m


electroacoustic work, 8m


for flute and tape, 10m


for orchestra

dans les debris du temps

for chamber ensemble, 10m

De corporis fabrica

for amplified solo clarinet and video

Deep Field I

for bass-baritone and live electronics

dirty pixels

for piano trio, 12m

Eight Maps for the Lost

for cello and live electronics, co-composed with Ashley Brown

Elegy for Lilburn

for solo clarinet and string orchestra


for string quartet, 20m

From the Lonely Margins of the Sea

for piano and small orchestra, 11m

Heart Across Night

for trombone, double bass and drumkit, 7m

Heavy Traffic

for contrabassoon and orchestra, 12m


for saxophone quartet, 9m

Icons and Artifice

for bass clarinet duo, ensemble and electronics

in flexion

for musical saw and tape, 10m


for percussion

Inner Phases

for Chinese instrument ensemble and string quartet

Khoomei Loops

for mixed chamber septet, 7m

Kreasi Baru

for gamelan and pre-recorded tape, 9m

Machine Noises

for piano, 6m


for gamelan, 5m

Mapoutahi Stands

for symphony orchestra, 8m


for ensemble


for chamber septet, 8m


for symphony orchestra, 9m

Orbits of Influence

for twelve saxophones, 9m


for voices, brass, woodwind and percussion


for cello and piano

Roh Gunung (Spirit of the Mountains)

for sampelong and amplified saluang, 7m

Save Yourself

for chamber ensemble, 12m


for large chamber ensemble, 7m 30s


for chamber orchestra

Splinter Cells

for alto/baritone saxophone and chamber ensemble


for mixed sextet


a live score for dance, in collaboration with choreographer/filmmaker Daniel Belton., 38m

To the names that have left

for vocal ensemble

Traiga Cuentos la Guitarra

for solo guitar, 9m

Tre Canzoni Imperfette

for solo flute


for chamber ensemble, 6m


for piano and orchestra

Wind Shear

for solo flute, 9m

Zonam Solvere

for chromatic gamelan and saxophone quartet

Resources (34)

2013 APRA Silver Scroll Awards

Education resource

Canzona 2004 vol 25 no 46

Commentary or analysis

Canzona 2006 vol 26 no 47

Commentary or analysis