A collection of piano solos by Dallas Gray written about the shipwrecks of the Wilderness Coast of Victoria.
Each ship is an exploration. A dive or a dream. A new discovery or a connection to the past. Choose your wreck and play it as it feels right. Play it as an expedition. Don't worry about me. I've let go.
These works were created from dreams, from mythology and from my visual experiences living on the Wilderness Coast of Victoria.
As a child I started to play music, sifting through the works left sitting on top of my piano by my grandparents. Heavy reading for a young girl learning Liszt, Rachmaninoff and Chopin. I played them the way I wanted to hear them, within my abilities and within my experience, with no one to tell me I was wrong.
I want you to play these pieces the same way. Without regard for me. Without regard for stylistic constrictions or even notational boundaries. Within the notation you will find there are no dynamic, tempo or pedal markings. This art of interpretation is lost like the wrecks written about. It doesn't represent ignorance or disregard for the composer.
It is in fact paying the highest respect - to immerse in the potential of art.
To create and recreate in a personal way. To claim it for your own with love for the bones of the concept, the skeleton of the wreck and to fill it with your own dreams.
To let go.
Wrecked at Shipwreck Creek, Victoria, Australia 1837
Formerly the slave ship Frasquita. Condemned and then auctioned in Sierra Leone it was renamed Schah in Scotland and re-registered in 1834. Too small to compete with the trade ships between the Ottoman Empire and England, it was sold again to an Australian company for voyages from Sydney to Hobart. It's final voyage carrying 13 passengers and 8 crew ended with the Schah being driven off course and crashing into rocks at Shipwreck Creek close to Mallacoota.
There were 13 survivors.
Wrecked onshore near Tullaberga Island, Victoria, Australia 1927.
142 passengers were aboard when the SS Riverina wrecked due to heavy seas on it's way from Hobart to Sydney. The vessel was carrying 19,352 crates of applies and 296 tonnes of general cargo.
All passengers were saved after a 13 kilometre walk to nearby Mallacoota, The wreck was unable to be salvaged and was later used as target practice by the RAAF.
The American steamer Monumental City was the first steamship to cross the Pacific, attracted by the Victorian gold rush. It had previously been involved in the Californian gold rush carrying passengers from Nicaragua to San Francisco as they crossed the American continent from Europe and the east coast of America. It had a short career on the Australian coast, being wrecked on Tullaberga Island after only one month in service due to a navigation error. Thirty seven lives were lost in the disaster. The 54 survivors were left stranded on Tullaberga for days while a raft was built from timber from the wreck so they could cross to the mainland and nearby Mallacoota.
Iron Ore Carrier
The Iron Crown was built in Williamstown Victoria for the Commonwealth Shipping Board. On the 4th of June 1942, Iron Crown was torpedoed off Gabo Island by a Japanese submarine while carrying iron ore from Whyalla to Newcastle. 38 of 42 crew died and the few survivors were picked up out of the ocean by the SS Mulbera. The wreck was discovered by archeologists in April 2019 in 700 metres of water 100kms off the coast.
Built in 1909 in Glasgow, the steamer was first named Bright Wings, then Aughinish before being bought by BHP and renamed Iron Prince.
Wrecked 19th April 1923 off Cape Howe.