Compassion was written by singer/songwriter/composer Lior and composer Nigel Westlake and premiered with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra at the Sydney Opera House in late 2013.

Compassion is based on seven ancient Hebrew and Arabic texts, written in response to the vicious and implacable cycle of violence in the Middle East. Lior’s gloriously soulful voice and Westlake’s radiant music achieve the seemingly impossible: the uniting of Islam and Judaism in a joyful celebration of compassion and its ability to bring people together across the divides of race and fear.

A chamber version of Compassion has been commissioned for premiere at the 2018 Adelaide Festival by Tinalley String Quartet. This Octet version featuring some of Australia’s best musicians offers the opportunity to take this amazing and inspiring work to venues across Australia in 2019.

Compassion will be performed in the second half of the concert. The first half will feature shorter pieces including the Song Cycle ‘Hours I have Never Known’ by Lior and Ade Vincent.

Venue Format
Theatre, Hall, Black Box Venue
Technical Rating
Touring Party
9 (8 musicians plus sound engineer)


Musica Viva is the largest presenter of chamber music in the world, a truly national company with offices in every Australian state and territory, reaching approximately 360,000 people directly every year.

Musica Viva is a Major Performing Arts organisation with over 70 years’ experience presenting and touring chamber and ensemble music. Regional touring has been part of the organisation’s activities since its inception. We partner with professional venues, festivals and regional conservatoriums to present around 65 concerts and workshops each year.

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Unique Selling Point

Compassion is a symphony of songs that unites the soulful power of Lior's voice with the radiance and vivid drama of Westlake's orchestral style. Poetic, beautiful and rewarding, this unique collaboration celebrates the liberating power of compassion that can bring people together across the divides of race and fear.

Lior is a compelling performer with strong stage presence and a searing, unique voice. His 2005 album Autumn Flow and subsequent activities have raised his profile to one of Australia’s most recognised and respected musicians, straddling the classical and pop worlds.

Other collaborating chamber musicians are also among Australia’s best.

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Community Engagement

Compassion will be performed by 8 of Australia’s best ensemble musicians including renowned singer-songwriter Lior.

These musicians can provide excellent opportunities for local and student musicians to develop skills through masterclasses and workshops. In addition to instrument-specific masterclasses (e.g. violin, percussion), and chamber music masterclasses for local chamber groups, Lior can present songwriting workshops for local contemporary musicians.