Willoughby Symphony Orchestra has announced its 2024 Young Composer of the Year. Composer Ray Lin has been named as the award’s 20th recipient for his work Voyage of the Silk Road, which will be premiered by the orchestra and choir on 20 – 21 April at The Concourse, Chatswood.

The Award offers a cash prize of $5,000 and two premiere performances of the winning work by the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra and Choir, which are also recorded.

The 2023 recipient of the award was Klearhos Murphy. Previous winners include Emma Greenhill and Joseph Newton.

Ray Lin. Photo supplied.

Lin is a composer, conductor, arranger, orchestrator and multi-instrumentalist whose work has been performed in the US, China, New Zealand and Australia. He has written for guitarist Karin Schaupp, the Queensland Pops Orchestra, Topology, and members of New York’s Ba Ban Chinese Music Society. He was also the 2023 Composer-in-Residence for Camerata – Queensland’s Chamber Orchestra.

Among his accolades are a 2020 Queensland Music Award for Contemporary Classical Song of the Year, second place at the 2021 National Youth Arranging Competition and the 2022 David Blumberg Award, from the American Society of Music Arrangers and Composers. He was also commissioned for the 2022 ABC Commissioning Fund.

Voyage of the Silk Road is a “sonic exploration that reimagines the journey of a voyage on the ancient trade routes of the Silk Road,” said Lin.

“Being a bridge of communication between the East and the West, the Silk Road remains an important part of history renowned for its mysterious landscapes, fascinating stories and tales, and its function in connecting different regions via the exchange of goods and culture. The music invites the audience to embark on a journey experiencing the Silk Road voyage from the mystery of the uncertainly in the beginning, through the intense challenges to the soaring triumph at the end, underlining the spirit of exploration and cultural exchange that defined the ancient trade routes.”


Ray Lin new work will be performed at the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra’s Emperor at The Concourse, Chatswood, 20–21 April.

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