Susan Frykberg

  • Hastings (New Zealand), 1954
  • Composer • Sound artist

Susan Frykberg (New Zealand, 1954) is a composer of electroacoustic music who often combines feminist ideas and theatrical processes in her work. In her struggle to find a “world in which women’s music can be heard,” both on a metaphorical and literal level, Frykberg has created a number of theatrical ‘environments’ in which (often mythological) stories of women’s lives are the ‘context’ for her music.

She has studied with, and been influenced by, composers John Rimmer, Barry Vercoe, Barry Conyngham, Iannis Xenakis and Barry Truax. After completing an MA from Simon Fraser University (SFU) in 1990, Frykberg accepted a position at SFU teaching electroacoustic / acoustic communication.

Frykberg has received commissions and grants from the Ontario Arts Council, the Arts Council of New Zealand and the Canada Council for the Arts. Many works have been broadcast on CBC and her collection of works on cassette — Transonances — has been broadcast internationally.

Since the birth of her son, Esha, much of her musical output has been an attempt to bring some of the sense of the momentous and awe inspiring nature of birth-giving (and hence motherhood) into her work.