Sound Design: ‘Avenue Q’ Additional Video


Cairns Choral Society’s 2017 production of Triple Tony Award winning musical Avenue Q, which incorporates video content as part of the production’s ‘Sesame Street for adults’ style. Whilst I was originally involved as a performer, I was also asked to produce the television advertising, and other video content for the web, I was also asked to contribute additional video content specific to the local production. Continue Reading →

Sound Design: ‘Avenue Q’ TVC

30 & 15 Second versions of the TVC were created and the audio also used for concurrent radio campaign.


I was involved with the Cairns Choral Society production of Triple Tony Award winning musical Avenue Q, and was originally approached to provide a character voice-over for a TV Commercial. Due to time restrictions and convenience, I offered to record the voice-over in my studio. After discussions with their producer about what the video content was going to be, I offered to take on the video production as well. Continue Reading →

Sound Design: ‘Children Of The Black Skirt’

The introduction cue from ‘Children Of The Black Skirt’, played in blackout.
The final part of the is the iconic footsteps and keys of the titular character.


‘Children Of The Black Skirt’ is one-act play, an Australian gothic fairytale in which three lost children discover an abandoned orphanage in the bush. As they encounter various artifacts (a black dress, a suitcase, a wash basket) the spirits of the past occupants of the orphanage manifest, and share their stories. Continue Reading →

Tutorial: Second Hand Studio – Shopping In Japan

Why Buy Gear In Japan?

I live in regional Australia, about 2000km from the nearest capital city. Thanks to the internet, although shipping can be an issue, the prices for new equipment have pretty much equalised. Plus we have a great music shop in town who’ll order pretty much anything in for you.

As for second hand gear, there’s not a broad music technology user base turning over equipment in my area, so the only option left is to go online. Which brings up the shipping issue again, but also just purchasing can be a gamble – can you trust the seller? Is ‘very good condition’ really very good? I like to get ‘hands on’ with stuff before I pay good money for it.

Second hand gear in Japan is usually in very good condition which makes it a great source of kit when you’re on a budget. Continue Reading →

Back From Hiatus

It’s been a long time since I posted here. I thought I’d write a note letting you know why Hirogari has been relatively silent over the past year. I’ve certainly not been. Over the past twelve months I’ve returned to performing on the stage as a singer. Certainly not professionally, but I have found that in addition to my teaching day job to be quite time consuming, and whilst I have pages of notes and sketches for new Hirogari work, I’ve not really had enough free time to begin to put any of it together. Continue Reading →

Brain Waves

Usually I wake up around 5.30am. The night before it took forever to fall asleep, with the remnants of the day past and planning for the day coming rolling around my brain. I don’t feel rested or relaxed, and I can vaguely remember another stress dream: was it the one where I was grading potatos, sorting mushrooms or trying to put out spot-fires. That was a typical night before I started using a brain training app to help fall asleep. Continue Reading →

Tutorial: Using Multiple MIDI Controllers in Logic

Here’s a tutorial I recorded explaining how I go about using the Environment in Logic Pro in order to get multiple MIDI controllers to independently control individual soft synths. It’s very useful if you want to run multiple instruments in Logic simultaneously, for example controlling a pad with one keyboard whilst another keyboard controls a piano sound.

Track: Yamadera

Yamadera is a beautiful small town nestled at the base of a mountain, on the Yamagata Prefecture side of the Miyagi-Yamagata border. It’s located in the Tohoku region of northern Japan, on the main island of Honshu. In Japanese, yama means “mountain” and o-tera means “temple” – the town of Yamadera gets it’s name from the temple of Risshakuji (also commonly called Yamadera) which is scattered all over the mountainside from the base of the mountain to the top. During our Christmas-New Year trip to Japan, I visited Yamadera again with family. Continue Reading →

Track: Asanagi

Asanagi is a Japanese word that means “Morning calm over the sea”. It’s the image that I had in mind when writing this piece. One of my favourite times to be near the ocean is in the morning, watching the sky turn from the pre-dawn blue to the deep golden-orange of sunrise. At that time, the sea falls still – as if it were holding it’s breath, waiting for the sun to appear.

Another Hirogari piece inspired by the sun rising over the sea is Hinode. It has a very different mood of the sunrise…


Brain Blockages & Five Ways To Beat Writer’s Block

When involved in any kind of creative pursuit, one will eventually take a trip to the well of inspiration and come back disappointed. Thankfully writer’s block is not terminal – there are a few ways to get around it. I’ve found a number of times, whether it’s in the arrangement process or even just getting started on a tune, it at least reduces the frustration by having a few options to turn to when the muse flees. These are some of the things I find help… Continue Reading →