Matt Laing 30-11-20188451WEB.jpg

Photo: Sharon Gertner Photography

Matt is a freelance composer and viola player currently based in

Melbourne, Australia.

His music, “described as thought provoking and unusually beautiful”, is

fundamentally driven by an interest in story telling through sound, typically around

themes of social connection and environment.





Matt has been writing music since he started university, sketching ideas whilst

training to be a viola player, and completing a Bachelor of Music/Bachelor of

Commerce at the University of Melbourne. Following a successful participation in the

Flinders Quartet’s 2017 composer workshop, his first big commission Out of Hibernation was premiered by the Quartet in 2019 through which he was awarded an Ian Potter Cultural Trust grant to work on the quartet with mentoring from Brett Dean in London and Berlin. ​

Having participated in the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra's 2020 Young Composer program, he was subsequently selected as the Orchestra’s Young Composer in Residence for 2021, culminating in the premiere of his bassoon concerto Of Paradise Lost in July 2022. Matt has had residencies with the Four Winds Festival, was a recipient of a 2021 Prelude Residency through the Peggy Glanville-Hicks Composer House Trust, and is a Musica Viva FutureMaker for 2021-23.

Matt’s first work premiered overseas, Portrait of Blood, was performed in London on a tour by Affinity Quartet and Lotte Betts-Dean in February 2020.


Other compositional engagements have included works for the Australian String Quartet, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Ossicle Duo, Melbourne Chamber Players, the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra, Affinity Quartet, the Australian National Academy of Music, Wattleseed Ensemble, and the Z.E.N. Trio through Musica Viva.





Matt’s been a professional freelance viola player since 2012, playing regularly with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Victoria, and as a core member of the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra. He has also performed in the Australian Octet, and Melbourne-based ensembles Quartz, Rubiks and Arcko.


Festival engagements as a performer have included the Perth and Melbourne International Arts Festivals, the Bermagui Four Winds Festival, the Australian String Quartet's Dunkeld festival.​ Matt was soloist in the first complete performance in Australia of Morton Feldman's The Viola in My Life with an orchestra of ANAM musicians.


His freelance career has also included pop gigs and musicals, and he has a varied recording career across a wide range of styles for TV, film and albums.