Mara is a composer and curator based in Eora / Sydney. She plays the viola and collaborates with her laptop to create live performances and recorded pieces for film, dance, and gallery spaces. Informed by interactions and perspectives within environments, her work questions the coexistence and understanding between those who inhabit them.

In 2019 she graduated from RMIT with a Bachelor of Design (Digital Media) and went on to attend LungA School (Seyðisfjörður, Iceland) in early 2020. She has been commissioned by SIGNAL, Avantwhatever Festival, Constellations Podcast, Open House, and Mpavillion. Mara currently works with the Powerhouse Museum as an audio producer and researcher.

I acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation as the traditional owners of the land that I live and work on today. I pay my respect to their elders past and present and recognise that sovereignty has never been ceded.


2024    Residency   DESA Residency, Ubud, IDN
2025    Residency   VICC Composer in Residency Program, Visby, SE


ongoing   Temporary Position with Zoe Baumgartner
2023        Building the Palace, BLINDSIDE, Naarm Melbourne
                       [Exhibition Review by Eleanor McCooey]
2022        Gathering Geographies, Darren Knight Gallery, Sydney
2021        Cycles, Sheffer Gallery, Sydney

film score

2024   The Calcified Ear (dir. Veronica Charmont)
2024   To Become A Lion (dir. David Ma)
2023   FROM THE FLASH (dir. Olivia Costa)
2023   Now You See Me — Sharks and Rays (dir. Alice Wesley-Smith)
2022   How To Build A Forest (dir. Jenn Tran)
2021   The Formation of a Cloud (dir. Jenn Tran)
2021   White's Seahorse (dir. Alice Wesley-Smith)
2020   The Weather Diaries (dir. Kathy Drayton)
2019   Specular (dir. Veronica Charmont)
2019   Bunset Soulevard (dir. Veronica Charmont)
2018   Sensual Healing (dir. Amaya Lang)
2016   Parastas (dir. Marie-Stella McKinney) (Nominated for Best Composer at SFSFF)

dance score

2021   Remember what you heard when you weren't even listening — Arini Byng
2019   Of Space and Time — Angela Valdez
2018   Breathe — Angela Valdez

sound design

2024   Pre-Show Announcement for Phoenix Central Park
2024   A Living Instrument, short documentary (dir. Hyun Lee)
2023   Amali, short documentary (dir. Ruby Harris)
2023   Double Parallax, Exhibition, Meng-Yu Yan and Anna May Kirk, Mosman Art Gallery
2023   Blue Corridor, Sarah and Sebastion Campaign
2023   Future Fashion, Exhibition, Powerhouse Museum
2023   Powerhouse Museum Sonic Identity
2023   Aria, Sarah and Sebastion Campaign
2023   Latitudes: Sometimes To One Hundred; 151E; Window (dir. Subversus)
2022   Culinary Archive Podcast (Powerhouse Museum)
2022   Oscillations: Omar Musa — Radiesthesia, Podcast (Powerhouse Museum)
2021   A Stretch of the Imagination — Jack Hibberd, Theatre (dir. Andrew Signor)


2022   Movements performed by Ensemble Apex at Darren Knight Gallery
2021   Sing With Your Friends Over Zoom (via Temporary Position)
2021   attempting to stretch — for solo viola
2021   pulling moods — for solo viola
2021   heavy drone building — for viola, clarinet, and tape
2021   duet — for solo viola in the Villa Alba Museum


2023   How To Build A Forest (OST)
2021   The Formation of a Cloud (OST - Music Company)
2021   Akin, with Land Systems (LP - Spirit Level)
2020   Stretching (Music Company – Vector Fields Vol. 2 Compilation)
2020   Feeling (Fluxx – Fluxx Vol. I Compilation)
2019   Slow Dance (EP)
2019   Live at Wylie's Baths – Alaska Orchestra (Live EP)
2017   Missing (LP)
2017   People (1974) ft. Frank (Single)
2017   Shift (Spirit Level – Kindred Spirits: Piano Day compilation)
2016   Liquid (LP)
2016   Exhaustion/Destruction (Single)
2014   Get Lost in the Night (LP)

browser-based installations

2021   Murmurs — HyperLocal, PACT
2020   Promised Files
2020   i can still hear the strong winds outside — AvantWhatever Festival
2020   LungA Sound Archive


2022   Building the Palace (Curatorial Essay), Building the Palace, self-published — Audio Version
2022   Earthly Elements Through Our Bodies (Curatorial Essay), Gathering Geographies, self-published
2021   Journals — #1 #2 #3 — Bogong Centre For Sound Culture
2021   Floating Apart - Symbiotic Poems
2021   Infinite Rebirth / Immortality, No No No Mag No.1, No More Poetry
2020   Resting Between - Symbiotic Poems, Seyðisfjörður, Iceland
2020   First Gesture
2017   Pioneering Women of Electronic Sound Volume 1, self-published
2017   The Guide to Composers and Koalas Volume 2, self-published
2017   Liquid (lyrics from the album), self-published
2016   The Guide to Composers and Koalas Volumes 1, self-published

selected performances

2023   Strata Festival with Chris Abrahams, Phoenix Central Park
2022   De–Choiring: a workshop for new approaches to scoring, Temporary Position, Phoenix Central Park
2022   Art After Dark, The Cutaway, Sydney Bienalle
2021   Make It Up Club Online, Youtube / Melbourne
2021   Mono-Poly, Liquid Architecture, Collingwood Yards, Melbourne
2020   MERGE: Duet with the Villa Alba Museum, Melbourne
2018 / 2020   Ambient 1: Music For Airports. written by Brian Eno. Performed by Alaska Orchestra – VividLive / Digital Season, Sydney Opera House (viola, synthesiser, electronics, and vocals)
2018 – 2020   Alaska Orchestra Live Performances (viola, electronics, vocals, synthesiser, harmonium)
2014 – 2020   Lupa J live band (viola, electronics and vocals),
2017 – 2019   Improvised performances with Tilde Joy (viola and electronics)
2019               Candy live band (viola, bass guitar, keyboard)
2017 – 2018   Braille Face live band (viola)
2017 – 2019   The Overheads live band (viola, keyboard, guitar)


2023   Studio Kura, Itoshima (JP)
2023   Bundanon, NSW — With Temporary Position, supported by Cement Fondu
2021   Bogong Centre for Sound Culture, VIC
2021   Church St Studios, Sydney


2019   To Be Found – The Overheads
2018   Dearest Friend – Hemm
2016   Numb – Lupa J


2024   Pure Space FM
2020   At Home (At Home), Music Company
2020   .wav Artefacts E5 on SkyLab Radio

interviews / press

2024   Out of the Box with Kate Saap, FBi Radio
2022   Mara Schwerdtfeger's world of sound, The Music Show with Andrew Ford, ABC
2022   InScape 013: Nostalgic Listening w/ Mara Schwerdtfeger - Daniel George, OpenLab (106.4FM), Ibiza
2020   Working with Sound, Australian Audio Guide
2019   Interview on Double Bounce, Triple R, Naarm (Melbourne)
2017   Spirit Level Loves