Essays, Interviews

Criticism, reflections and research often occasioned by the work of contemporary musicians and performers, writers and visual artists. Other pieces have been written as talks—for example, the ‘Introduction’ to ‘Double Jeopardy’, a 2010 PEN Melbourne event. The memoir ‘Unevenly Buried’ was cited in Australian Book Review as ‘an essay of rare beauty’.

Cynthia Troup open notebook, photo Daisy Noyes
Open notebook, photo Daisy Noyes
‘Orchestral playing as embodied knowledge – an unintended lament’

on A single voice, by Susan Philipsz, ADSR Zine 013 (April 2021): find the whole issue of the zine here, or read the contribution here

‘On seeing “Camouflage”, then the Getty challenge—some thoughts on “nearly”’

(or: precision, pandemic, playfulness), ADSR Zine 009 (June 2020): find the whole issue of the zine here, or read the contribution here

‘Harsh and intricate and right in front of you’

on John Wolseley’s History of the Whipstick Forest with ephemeral swamps and gold bearing reefs (2011), in the collection of the Nat​i​onal Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, ADSR Zine 007 (February 2020): browse the whole issue of the zine here, or read the essay here

‘“All visible”: Notes from the first Hi-Viz Practice Exchange’

published online by Chamber Made (March 2019), as part of documenting the Hi-Viz Practice Exchange of December 2018; read here

‘“Chipping in”: Breaking Open the Image of the Father’

Double Dialogues, no. 19, Why Do Things Break? (Spring 2018); ‘if “the image of the father is monumental”, this is a daughter’s first poetic riposte to that premise. She ‘chips in’ on the page in dialogue with the late Louise Bourgeois, an artist perhaps best known for her sculpture on a vast scale’; read here

‘Edwardes Lake, Reservoir: No Diving’

a reflective essay in the form of a (failed) acrostic, written for the 2017 Arts and Cultural Development project Writing this Place (commissioned by the City of Darebin), and published online as part the Writing this Place collection, pp. 26–30; read here


‘Towards a Different Way of Being: Emma Annand on “Undercoat: A Parafoxical Tale”’

Inner Circle Magazine, 27 June 2017; at 2021 the magazine is no longer online—read the submission copy of interview here, and see performances of Undercoat: A Parafoxical Tale documented here

Untitled audio interview with the late Helen Noonan

informally published by Chamber Made Opera, July 2016—an edited extract from a longform video interview created in 2013 for the CMO 25 Years Project; listen here

‘Glancing Sideways through “Undercoat: A Parafoxical Tale”’

Writing from Below (special issue, Contamination from Above), vol. 2, no. 2 (2015); read here

‘“A Great Night-time Secret”: Foxes at Darebin Parklands. An Interview with Peter Wiltshire’

n-Scribe Magazine, no. 10 (September 2015), pp. 23–25; read here (or download the full issue of the journal here)

‘“Every image interim”: An Interview with Jennifer Strauss’

Quarterly Newsletter, PEN International Melbourne Centre, new series no. 3 (2015), pp. 28–35; read here

‘The Eloquence of the Act of Gathering: Reflections on the 80th PEN International Congress, Bishkek (Kyrgyzstan), 2014’

Quarterly Newsletter, PEN International Melbourne Centre, new series no. 1 (2015), pp. 34–40

‘A Poetry of Flight for the Here and Now’

interview with poet A. Frances Johnson, Quarterly Newsletter, PEN International Melbourne Centre, new series no. 4 (2013), pp. 48–55; read here

‘Sounds Like a Question’

essay commissioned by Madeleine Flynn and Tim Humphrey for the chapbook Five Short Blasts Manifest, edited by Cynthia Troup (Melbourne, 2013), pp. 26–33; read here

‘The Minotaur Trilogy: Clews to the Unrepresentable, the Impossible’

Chamber Made Opera Melbourne Festival program (October 2012); read here

‘Precarious Living Boundaries: Sarah Pirrie’s Runoff (2012)’

catalogue, 24HR Art, NT Centre for Contemporary Art (Darwin: 2012); read here

‘A Riddle and A Dare: Translating Aphids’ Triptych of Small Puppet Plays into Italian’

Quarterly Newsletter, PEN International Melbourne Centre, new series no. 3 (2011), pp. 28–34

‘Introduction, “Double Jeopardy: Women Writers in Dangerous Places”’ [extract]

Quarterly Newsletter, PEN International Melbourne Centre, new series no. 1 (2010), pp. 12–13

Thousands of Bundled Straw: Floating, Elusiveness and the Ecstatic’

abridged essay published as Melbourne Recital Centre program for the Salon, 12 February 2009; full version can be read here

‘Secretary of the Impossible’

on Willoh. S. Weiland’s project Yelling at StarsRealTime, no. 88 (2009), p. 27; read here

‘Rosa Casado: Abstractions of Reality. Interview by Cynthia Troup’

The Open Page Journal of Women’s Thoughts, Questions and Visions for Theatre [Denmark], no. 13 (2008), pp. 40–44

‘Weightlessly Home, Safe’

on Barbara Campbell’s 1001 nights castRealTime, no. 86 (2008), p. 28; read here

‘“Unevenly Buried”: A Personal Topography of Rome’

memoir, in Australians in Italy: Contemporary Lives and Impressions, edited by Bill Kent, Ros Pesman and Cynthia Troup (Melbourne: Monash University Publishing, 2010. First published Melbourne: Monash University ePress, 2008), pp. 196–202; read here

‘Work, Endeavour, Desire: Julie Davies, Composite Portraits of Sandra Bridie

catalogue, Ocular Lab Inc (Melbourne, 2008), n. p.

‘Val Camonica—An Excavation’

on the archaeological background to David Young’s Val Camonica Pieces, made available online here by ABC Classic FM in conjunction with the 2007 radio feature Val Camonica Pieces, produced by Duncan Yardley

‘Ingesting the World’

on Rosa Casado’s performance of Paradise 2—The Incessant Sound of a Falling TreeRealTime, no. 74 (2006), p. 47; read here

‘The Art of Performance: Online and Alive’

interview with Barbara Campbell, RealTime, no. 73 (2006), p. 30; read here

‘David Young: Producing Uncertainty’

Contemporary Music Review [UK], vol. 25, no. 4 (2006), pp. 379–392

‘“Space to see things”: An Interview with Lally Katz’

Antipodes [USA], vol. 20, no. 1 (2006), pp. 84–87

Ready, Fire, Aim

interview with Margaret Cameron and David Young, Meanjin (special issue, Portraits of the Artist), vol. 64, no. 1/2 (2005), pp. 302–310

‘The Latent Image: New Life Drawings by Peta Clancy’

catalogue, RMIT Project Space/Spare Room (Melbourne, 2005), pp. 6–7

‘So Changeable. What is the Body? On the Visible Human Bodies Project’

Visible Human Bodies, catalogue, The James Green Centre for World Art, Brighton Museum & Art Gallery (Brighton [UK], 2005), pp. 18–23

Oribotics: Matt Gardiner’

un Magazine, vol. 1, no. 1 (2004), p. 27

‘The Scope of Governing Values

PUBLIC/PRIVATE Tumatanui/Tumataiti, catalogue, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tãmaki (Auckland, 2004), pp. 34–38

‘Surveying Skin Quartet

Melbourne International Arts Festival Visual Arts Program 2003 (Melbourne, 2003), pp. 86–89

‘ConVerge: Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art 2002’

Art & Australia, vol. 40, no. 2 (2002), pp. 240–242

‘Beethoven’s Sinfonie Nr. 8, 1811–1812’

Treasures from the World’s Great Libraries, catalogue, National Library of Australia (Canberra, 2001), pp. 96–97

Overheard at Inveresk—A Sound Installation and Miniature Opera

catalogue, Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery (Launceston, 2001), n. p.

‘On the score of (for the reasons of) Juliana Hodkinson’s some reasons for hesitating

Autograf—Tidsskrift for ny musik [Denmark], vol. 9, no. 4 (2000), pp. 9–11; read the English version here

‘Un glossario/A glossary’

A Matter of Distance: Four Artists Reflect on an Italian Heritage, catalogue, Linden Arts Centre & Gallery (Melbourne, 2000), n. p.

‘Val Camonica Pieces: Sarcophagus and Inventario by David Young’

New Music Now, catalogue, Youth Music Australia (Brisbane, 1999), p. 7

‘Artists and Insects: Considering Collaborative Relationships‘

Sounds Australian: Journal of the Australian Music Centre, no. 52 (1998), pp. 28–30