Arts Minister’s announcements:  Finally we have clarity on the arts funding landscape, with some money returned to the Australia Council, and a new fund now open. Read our analysis here.

Remembering Joan Livermore: Music Australia pays tribute to music educator Joan Livermore, a member of the founding Steering Committee and then Board of Directors of the Music Council of Australia. Joan sadly passed away in Canberra on 8 November.  An impressive contributor to the arts, and you can read Julie Dyson’s tribute to Joan on the National Advocates for Arts Education Facebook page here. Thankyou Joan.

2015 Roundup: Your Ed is taking a break in December, back in January. Thanks to all our supporters for a fabulous 2015, and you can read a Music Australia round-up here! Watch out for our special summer enews editions – and see you in 2016!

Share your news, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the latest music news from out there.
Chris Bowen CEO
Music Australia




Music world responds to Paris attacks 

As the world digests the impacts of the Parisian attacks, which U2’s Bono described as “the first direct hit on music”, stories of grief, solidary, determination and beauty have emerged. Full story




Music Australia’s 2015 Round Up

As 2015 draws to a close, we reflect on our achievements, are proud to announce that over 600,000 Australians have accessed our services, and thank our tremendous coalition of supporters. Full story



Some relief on the arts funding front

The funded arts sector sighed in collective relief when Minister Fifield recently announced the return of $8 million pa taken from the Australia Council. While this relief is real and the decision will make a difference, questions remain. Full story


South Australia Abolishes ‘Entertainment Consent’ Law

Licensed live music venues celebrate a significant reduction in red tape. Full story

MusicNT Seeks Feedback through Survey

MusicNT’s 2015 survey questions musicians, industry figures and fans about their music habits. Full story


APRA AMCOS  2015 Professional Development Awards Winners

Nine Australian musicians have won $15,000 for career development. Full story


How the visual might be transforming classical music

Visual elements such as interactive screen images and projections appear to be changing the way classical music is being performed, and also the way audiences experience concerts. Rock star stage personas might be doing the same too. Full story

Classical music’s disappearance from TV

One of classical music’s problems is that it suffers a lack of visibility on mainstream television, argues UK commentator Simon Toyne. The reason, he suggests, is “institutional embarrassment, or just indifference”. But children love classical music, he adds. Full story

New opera explores Melba’s torn loyalties

Perth has given birth to another new Australian opera, this time about Nellie Melba. Entitled Melba, it is a music theatre style work composed by Johannes Luebbers that focuses on the famous singer’s domestic battles. Full story




Lease increase threatens ANAM

The Australian National Academy of Music might be forced to move following a sharp rise in the lease on its South Melbourne Town Hall home, and it has already received an offer from the Australian National University to relocate there.  Full story

Marking 10 Years – Happy Birthday, MCUI!

Australia’s biggest school music initiative celebrates its 10th Anniversary in 2016. Music Australia will mark the anniversary with a celebration of the program’s history and the development of exciting plans for 2016 and the future. Students have the chance to help write the song that stops the nation by submitting an entry to the Music: Count Us In National Songwriting Competition. Full story

Mounting research shows the benefits of music education on children

The place of music education during early childhood was discussed at a major European music education conference in Glasgow. Meanwhile, research continues to accumulate that shows music education can have cognitive and developmental benefits on children. Full story



Wheelchair-Bound Drummer Crowdfunds to Represent Australia

Andrew Hewitt, an Aussie drummer with cerebral palsy, has been invited to speak at one of the world’s biggest music conferences. Full story

Welcome Group Hosts 5th Jam Session for Refugees

Musicians of all levels are invited to this long afternoon of informal music-making.  Full story

Pledge for HONK! Oz Festival 

The HONK! Oz Festival of street music is a three day spectacle featuring alternative community bands and related arts. It all happens on the streets of Wollongong. Spontaneous, liberating and imbued with a strong social conscience, HONK is a collision of musicians, friends, families, outrageous costumes and irresistible music. Help them make it spectacular by pledging to their pozible campaign! Full story



Competitions & Awards



Airlie Beach Music Festival – International Songwriting Competition

Songwriters are invited to write a love song about the Whitsundays. The competition will run from now until 7 May 2016 to find the best song and we are offering $5000 prize money to the winning song-writer!


Fanfare Competition – Call for submissions

8 young artists + 8 compositions = Sydney Opera House 
Open to young people aged 12-21 years to write a short 30 second composition to assist calling people to take their seats at the Sydney Opera House. To enter the competition complete the submission form online before 23 May 2016.

Roma International Choir Festival & Competition

Since 1990 the beauty and the natural diversity of Riva del Garda has inspired hundreds of choirs to give their best in a fair competition and forge friendship with local and foreign choirs. Categories include children and youth choirs, male and female and mixed choirs, gospel and spiritual.


2016 Queensland Music Awards

Songwriters from all across Queensland are now invited to enter their songs in the 2016 Queensland Music Awards. Published and unpublished original songwriters from all across Queensland are encouraged to submit their entries for the 2016 awards before midnight December 6.

Programs, Workshops & Masterclasses


City of Sydney – Creative Live Work Spaces

Applications for the creative live work spaces program are now open for leases commencing in June 2016. Applications will close at midnight Friday 11 December. 

Adelaide Guitar Festival SUMMER SCHOOL

8-22 Jan 2016
Building on the outstanding response for the Adelaide Guitar Festival Orchestra in 2014, the Adelaide Guitar Festival Summer School will be a week of intensive and immersive classical guitar playing and skills development.

Synergy |Taikoz - Taiko Introductory Workshops

29 Nov & 13 Dec
If you have enjoyed a Taikoz performance and would like to learn how to play the awe-inspiring Japanese taiko, why not try our 90 minute Play Taiko introductory workshop and... BRING A FRIEND FOR FREE!!

Christmas Carol Orchestra Workshop
12 Dec

Be enchanted by your own magical sounds of Christmas and play fun Christmas carols from around the world guided by professional musician and conductor Louise King.

TunED-Up! Applications have been extended to Friday 27 November 2015

18-22 Jan 2016
A five-day Professional Learning course for NSW and ACT K-6 teachers who are eager to up-skill and offer stronger music learning in their classrooms and schools.

Royal School of Church Music Summer School, Canberra

11-17 Jan 2016
A week of music-making for choristers, organists and composers, under the direction of Katherine Dienes-Williams (Guildford Cathedral, UK), with organist Peter Guy (Newcastle Cathedral, NSW) and composer Anne Carr-Boyd.

WA Youth Jazz Orchestra's 2016 National Emerging Jazz Composers Program

Applications close 4 Dec
The WA Youth Jazz Orchestra is offering young jazz composers exciting paid opportunities to develop new works and enhance their writing and conducting skills.

Cultural Infusion – National School Programs

Give your students the opportunity to interact with cultures from around the world and build appreciation of other people’s beliefs and lifestyles.  A range of programs are available. 

Sing for Good

Applications close 25 Dec
Sing for Good is leading the globe in song to make us all healthier, happier and more creative. Enter now to get more exposure, more likes and more donations. You can enter as many times as you like! 


Conferences, Seminars, Events


11th World Symposium on Choral Music, Barcelona – Call for applications

22-29 July 2017
Under the theme “The Colours of Peace”, the IFCM World Symposium on Choral Music will bring together choirs from all over the world, choral musicians, composers and publishers to share and celebrate diversity and artistic excellence of our global choral community. Closing date for Presenters/Lecturers: December 1, 2015

Illawarra Folk Festival

14-17 Jan
The 31st Illawarra Folk Festival to over 170 acts from all over the world and Australia.

Multicultural Arts Victoria Presents – State of Culture 2015 

26 Nov
This showcase at John Curtin will launch four new albums from Visible, a music mentoring programing giving a kick start to emerging and professional musicians from refugee and asylum seeker communities.


S.A. Community Music Festival


The ARPA Orchestra is sponsoring and organising the first Festival for S.A. Community Music.
Over 500 musicians in 20 excellent Bands, Choirs and Orchestras will present 16  entertaining
shows at 3pm and 7pm every Sunday 11 Oct – 29 Nov.  


Electronic Music Conference

1-2 Dec 
Sydney’s annual electronic music conference is Asia-Pacific’s premier electronic music industry event. Special Guest this year is iconic DJ Carl Cox. Music Australia members receive a super discount of $80 on tickets - just enter your membership number at checkout!  


Woodford Folk Festival

27 Dec-1 Jan
Woodford Folk Festival organisers promise an intense cultural experience and commitment to social responsibility for their 30th Anniversary programme.

Australian Performing Arts Market 2016

22-26 Feb

APAM is the leading biennial industry event for contemporary performing arts from Australia and New Zealand. The program has been announced and early bird registrations are available until 1 December.


Music and the Moving Image XI Conference – Call for Papers

27-29 May 2016
The annual conference, encourages written submissions from scholars and practitioners that explore the relationship between music, sound, and the entire universe of moving images. Submit Abstracts of (250 words) to: by December 15, 2015. 


32nd ISME World Conference – Glasgow

Jul 2016
An array of concerts featuring some of the world’s most exciting music from across the globe. Keynote speakers, researchers and practitioners will stimulate ways of thinking that are sure to impact your own practice and research. 

ISME  - Pre Conference: "IMAGINE THE FUTURE: Everyone Plays Music"

23-23 Jul 2016
Commission on Special Music Education and Music Therapy 
ISME – Community Music Activity (CMA) International Seminar

Jul 2016

Theme: Innovation and Change in Community Music. The seminar will bring together community music practitioners and scholars to celebrate and explore the music-making practices, pedagogies, and cultural politics that are currently shaping community music throughout the world.


Australian Songwriters conference

10-13 Jun 2016

The ASC focuses on the craft and business of songwriting and attracts writers from across Australia and internationally.

TUTTI 2016: 18th National Conference of Orff Schulwerk

Jan 2016

This is a conference for music educators working in schools, colleges, child care, tertiary education or music therapy.


SXSW Music 2016 

Mar 2016
SXSW, the world’s biggest music market and conference, can - if right for you - be the place to reach the next rung of the ladder. 2,000 acts from numerous countries, and a plethora of genres perform each year. 




Creative Partnerships Australia – MATCH funding applications now open

Our MATCH program helps artists and groups identify and secure private sector support; fund their projects and build a sustainable practice. Applications close 4 December 2015.


Playing Australia: Regional Performing Arts Touring Fund

Thus program supports performing arts to re regional and remote communities across Australia. Grants support the net touring costs for a national tour, and have no upper limit. Applicants are encouraged to speak with an Australia Council Grants Officer before applying. Applications close 1 December 2015.

Australia Council grants for 2015-2016

The national funding body has a four year organisational program, closing 1 December. There will now be two core grant rounds, the next in February 2016. Details about changes to their funding are on in a statement on their website. 


Performers' Trust Foundation

The PPCA Performers' Trust Foundation provides grants to promote and encourage music and the performing arts. The grants provided are non-recurring and can be used to cover tuition fees, travel costs, accommodation and venue hire/ PA hire. 

Billy Thorpe Scholarship - Closing this Friday 27 November

The Billy Thorpe Scholarship, funded by Arts Queensland provides $10,000 for an emerging artist to record with an established producer with career-planning advice from Chugg Entertainment. Applications close midnight Friday 27 November

Illawarra Folk Festival Folkaphonic Scholarships

Applications close 15 December
Apply to be part of our national big band, Folkaphonic Youth Orchestra!  You can apply now to be part of the second performance at the 2016 Illawarra Folk Festival, or register your interest in being part of future Folkaphonic events.

Melbourne Bach Choir Scholarships

Thanks to a generous grant from the Ian Potter Foundation, the Melbourne Bach Choir is able to offer in 2016 eight scholarships of $1500 to students aged 17-29 who wish to sing with the choir.



Collarts – Program Leader - Music

The Australian College of the Arts (Collarts) is seeking a suitably qualified and experienced program leader for its Bachelor of Arts (Music Performance).   The position is based across our South Melbourne and Fitzroy campuses. Contact Ben O’Hara via email or mobile ( 0499 889 002) for further information.

Tamworth Regional Conservatorium – Director

Seeking to appoint a dynamic Director with a demonstrated record of achievement in music/music education/arts management who will provide inspirational leadership and strategic direction together with sound fiscal management to the Conservatorium.

Melbourne International Jazz Festival – Marketing Coordinator

Working with the Marketing Consultant, the role’s primary focus is support the delivery of the marketing and communications plan for the annual Festival.


The Song Company – General Manager

The Song Company is an acapella ensemble of six professional singers. 



Sydney Symphony Orchestra –Principal Bassoon

Applications close Friday 22 January 2016




Electrofringe – 107 Projects, Redfern, NSW

28 Nov
A one-day showcase that brings together the best new experimental electronic and technology-based art and performance.

New Music Network Presents CANYON SOUND WALK – Blue Mountains National Park, NSW

29 Nov
A soundwalk with prepared trumpet and wind instruments.
Evans Lookout, Evans Lookout Road, Blue Mountains National Park. Part of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area.
Tickets: $30/25 conc. Booking conditions apply.

Adelaide Symphony Orchestra - Zeppelin Files Again, Festival Theatre, SA

4 – 5 Dec
Back by popular demand, Led Zeppelins’ most passionate disciples, The Zep Boys, join the ASO for a performance that will blow the roof off the Festival Theatre.

Canberra Youth Orchestra presents Folk Tales at Llewellyn Hall, ACT

5 Dec
Entitled ‘Folk Tales’, newly-appointed conductor Leonard Weiss will lead the CYO as they perform Grieg’s Symphonic Dances, and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No.2.

Sydney Hills Outdoor Cinema – Castle Hill, NSW

15 Jan – 14 Feb
Eats, Beats, Drinks & Flicks


21 Feb 2016
Gurrumul's TRIBE2tribe Electro Traditional tour combines the deep traditional ritual songs and rhythms of his world with the rhythms and beats of an urban tribal landscape which includes electro-roots, hip hop and house music.

Key Supporters 

  • Australia Council for the Arts
  • The Australian Government through the Dept of Education & Training
  • City of Sydney
  • Clipper Property Group
  • Thomson Geer Lawyers
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