Compassion (Nigel Westlake, Lior and Sydney Symphony Orchestra album)

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Compassion by Lior and Westlake.png
Live album by
ReleasedNovember 2013
Recorded6-7 September 2013
VenueSydney Opera House
LabelABC Music
ProducerBob Scott, Brooke Green, Lior, Nigel Westlake
Lior albums chronology
Tumbling into the Dawn
Scattered Reflections

Compassion is a live album recorded at the Sydney Opera House in September 2013 by Nigel Westlake, Lior and Sydney Symphony Orchestra. Compassion is an orchestral song cycle for voice and orchestra consisting of original melodies and orchestration set to ancient texts in Hebrew and Arabic, all centred around the wisdom of compassion.[1][2] The album was released in November 2013.

Nigel Westlake said "Compassion inhabits a vast array of emotions and colours, at times pulsating and riotous, at others reflective and textural, and draws upon the myriad of influences the two of us have been able to bring to the table from our incredibly diverse backgrounds. With the utmost respect, we have tried to imbue the ancient texts with a contemporary interpretation, adhering to the purity of a single voice and orchestra."[3]

At the APRA Music Awards of 2014, the album was nominated for Work of the Year – Orchestral.[4]

At the ARIA Music Awards of 2014, the album won ARIA Award for Best Classical Album.[5]


Graham Strahle from The Australian said "Compassion is more than a film score. At the centre are Lior's easy flowing, luminous melodies of subtly exotic Middle Eastern inflection [and] Westlake's orchestrations exhibit fascinating stylistic touches."[6]

Clive O'Connell from Sydney Morning Herald said "While not quoting traditional songs, apart from the moving prayer 'Avinu Malkeinu' that finishes the cycle, Westlake and Lior employ a range of modes, melismata and ornaments that suggest much Eastern Mediterranean music. The melody lines are wide-ranging, Lior using his microphone to telling effect, while Westlake's orchestrations surround the singer with muted ambient richness."[7]

Track listing[]

  • all words and music by Nigel Westlake and Lior.
  1. "Sim Shalom / Grant Peace" - 7:28
  2. "Eize Hu Chacham? / Who is Wise?" - 5:25
  3. "La Yu'minu / Until You Love Your Brother" - 4:18
  4. "Inna Rifqa / The Beauty Within" - 4:55
  5. "Al Takshu L'vavchem / Don't Harden Your Hearts" - 4:45
  6. "Ma Wadani Ahudun / Until the End of Time" - 7:57
  7. "Avinu Malkeinu / Hymn of Compassion" - 5:57

Release history[]

Region Date Format Label Catalogue
Australia & New Zealand 15 November 2013[8] ABC Classics ABC0678


  1. ^ "LIOR & WESTLAKE: SONGS WITH ORCHESTRA". Sydney Opera House. April 2013. Archived from the original on 21 April 2013. Retrieved 20 February 2020.
  2. ^ "Songs with Orchestra". Sydney Symphony. 12 April 2013. Retrieved 20 February 2020.
  3. ^ "Lior & Nigel Westlake Compassion". ABC Music. Retrieved 20 February 2020.
  4. ^ "Work of the Year – Orchestral". Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA). 2014. Retrieved 20 February 2020.
  5. ^ "2014 ARIA Awards Winners By Year". Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA). November 2014. Retrieved 20 February 2020.
  6. ^ "Compassion (Nigel Westlake/Lior, SSO)". The Australian. 7 March 2014. Retrieved 20 February 2020.
  7. ^ "Music review: MSO's Songs of Compassion". Sydney Morning Herald. 17 February 2014. Retrieved 20 February 2020.
  8. ^ "Compassion (DD)". Apple Music. Retrieved 20 February 2020.
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