Erik Griswold is a composer and pianist working in contemporary classical, improvised, and experimental forms. Particular interests include prepared piano, percussion, environmental music, and music of Sichuan province. Originally from San Diego, and now residing in Brisbane, he composes for adventurous musicians, performs as a soloist and in Clocked Out, and collaborates with musicians, artists, dancers, and poets.
He is renowned for his unique and spectacular projects centered around the piano and toy piano. The first Piano Mill that houses 16 pianos over two levels constructed in Australia was designed by architect Bruce Wolfe specifically for him. To launch The Piano Mill, Griswold composed a new work, All’s grist that comes to the mill, that responds to various influences such as architecture, the natural environment and Australia’s colonial history. He has also composed the music to the award-winning cross-cultural work Dragon Ladies Don’t Weep – a sonic portrait of (and performed by) new music icon toy pianist and pianist Margaret Leng Tan.
Together with Vanessa Tomlinson, Griswold directs Clocked Out, who create original music for prepared piano, percussion, found objects, and toys. Their albums include Time Crystals, Foreign Objects, Water Pushes Sand, and Every night the same dream. Clocked Out also produces innovative concert series, events and tours, for which they have received two APRA-AMCOS Art Music Awards (Excellence by an Organisation / 2011, and Excellence in Experimental Music / 2017) and two Green Room Awards (2000).