Olive was born on 31st May 1950 in London, where she studied
Piano, Organ, Harpsichord and Music Theory. 1968 A.Mus.T.C.L. diploma from
Trinity College London.
1968 to 1971 she studied for her B.A. degree in music at the University
of York. She then went on to postgraduate studies in composition,
studying with Bernard Rands (York 1971-72),
She has been recipient of various prizes and distinctions: from the Gedok - Leni Neuenschwander Prize 1998- for "Gleichsam einem Garten", from the Bach Academy in Stuttgart for "Stabat Mater", from the town of Hamlyn (Hameln/ Germany) for "An English Suite", and the Stuttgart Composition Prize for "Tomba di Bruno". Many of her works have been commissions from soloists, chamber ensembles and radio stations, mainly in Germany, Great Britain and Australia. Various publications in the field of music theory (analyses, theory of harmony, editing). Member of the board of directors of the "Internationaler Arbeitskreis Frau und Musik" (Women in Music Germany) since 1995.
Since 1979 she has been lecturer for Music Theory and Composition at the Hochschule fuer Musik, Nuremberg-Augsburg (formerly Meistersingerkonservatorium), Germany. Between 1993 and 1995 she was on leave of absence in Australia at the University of Ballarat and the James Cook University, Townsville, where she headed the University's Music Academy and also staged the music festival, "Contempofest 94".
Vivienne Olive: Composer in Residence - Bundanon, August / September 2004
I got back to Germany from Bundanon, Australia at the beginning of October and had to adjust to autumn and being in a city once more. I am a senior lecturer in music theory and composition in Nuremberg - a far cry from the wombats and kangaroos who were my constant companions in Authur Boyd's Bundanon.
This trust has developed programmes and facilities to create the "Living Arts Centre" envisaged by Authur Boyd and offers residencies not only to visual artists but also to writers and composers.
I was lucky enough to enjoy the privilege of being Composer in Residence for nearly six weeks and I can truly say it was one of the most memorable experiences I have ever had.
The highlight of my stay
was working with the Shoalhaven Youth Orchestra who performed my piece The river
runs across the page (the title being a line taken from one of Anna Kerdyjk
Nicholson's "Bundanon Cantos"). The performance took place on a perfect
day in the Authur and Yvonne Boyd education centre at Riversdale.
Particularly inspiring was the contact with the other artists who were there at the same time. "Contact" is not the right word. Genuine friendships were formed. Gillian Turner (Melbourne) is designing the cover for the published version of the Shoalhaven orchestral piece and there are plans afoot to work on joint projects with the artist / photographer Maree Azzopardi (Sydney) and the environmental artist Patrick Jones (Melbourne).