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Destructive Interference (2021)

for solo flute // 9'


for Lily Bryant

commissioned by the Australian National Academy of Music

Destructive InterferenceLily Bryant, flute
00:00 / 08:54

Recorded at the Melbourne Recital Centre in December 2021, this work was made possible by RISE Funding, the Australian National Academy of Music and flautist Lily Bryant, with producer Duncan Yardley and engineer Russell Thomson

Performance history​

December 8 2021

Abbotsford Convent, Oratory, Abbotsford

Australian National Academy of Music

ANAM recital: Lily Bryant -

Lily Bryant, flute

May 13 2022

Abbotsford Convent, Laundry Room

Australian National Academy of Music

ANAM Set Festival Opening Night

Lily Bryant, flute

August 6 2022

National Gallery of Victoria

ANAM at NGV: Ron Mueck

Lily Bryant, flute

Film by Marleena Forward 2022


This piece is a portrait of a meeting point between the self that you know, and the selves that went and made different decisions, did other things. The experience of lockdowns these past 18 months has been a period of forced self-reflections, and to me it’s been interesting to think about how we share these experiences with the people around us, but also the lives we might have led, in the sense that the pandemic experience has been so overwhelming it implies a cancelling out; whether everything went great or terrible before, you’re in lockdown now and you're brought closer to those lives you left behind, even if they’re completely unrelatable.

The title takes its name after the phenomenon created when two audio waves superimpose and cancel each other out leading to a lower amplitude. Naming it this implies a nihilism on this process of reflection but the intended sentiment of the work is ambivalence through a process of reckoning.


Limelight, 5/22

"Laing has a deft sense of movement; his work is fit for choreography, for bodies shifting in space, and this work (Destructive Interference), which was as much about the silence he wrote as the notes, was no exception." 

CutCommon, 5/22
"Lily Bryant’s commanding performance of Matthew Laing’s Destructive Interference for solo flute was absolutely captivating... the work explored the full expressive range of the flute, at times sonorous and at others percussive and driving. Lily’s playing was full of character and beautifully articulated the detail in the writing."

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