Soprano Deborah Kayser, Melbourne Digital Concert Hall honored

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Melbourne-based Speak Percussion won the Luminary Award for Organization for its visionary leadership and sustained contribution to Australian artistic music.

Chris Howlett, Founder of Melbourne Digital Concert Hall Credit:Justin mcmanus

The Melbourne Digital Concert Hall won the Victorian State Award for supporting the music industry during the pandemic. It turned out to be one of the resounding successes to emerge under COVID-19, established by musician and producer Chris Howlett and arts administrator Adele Schonhardt in March of last year when events were canceled locally and internationally. . A social enterprise, MDCH has hosted more than 400 concerts digitally and employed 1,000 performers – with nearly $ 1.6 million raised in ticket sales to date.

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Initially, Howlett “didn’t know if the business would raise $ 10,000 and last a few weeks.” On his first weekend, he raised $ 18,000 and almost instantly had 6,000 subscribers.

He also has legs far beyond the pandemic. “The MDCH is the product of partnerships and acts of faith, I hope this can continue,” Howlett said, adding that the week was important as they also received $ 400,000, which is two years of funding. through the federal government’s RISE initiative.

The Mavericks of Music Ensemble Offspring have been honored with a state award for their “consistent high-quality performances, breadth of repertoire, and 25-year commitment to collaboration.”

The Offspring Ensemble is made up of Ben Kopp, Claire Edwardes, Jason Noble, Veronique Serret, Lamorna Nightingale and Blair Harris, whom Edwardes describes as musical mavericks.

The Offspring Ensemble is made up of Ben Kopp, Claire Edwardes, Jason Noble, Veronique Serret, Lamorna Nightingale and Blair Harris, whom Edwardes describes as musical mavericks.Credit:Elen Bandman

The Offspring Ensemble is made up of six artists, including Claire Edwardes, Ben Kopp, Jason Noble, Veronique Serret, Lamorna Nightingale and Blair Harris. Percussionist and artistic director Edwardes says the group’s mission is to perform music by cutting-edge, mostly living, composers.

“I think it’s really important to encourage emerging composers, the people who don’t have a voice in the big, very competitive traditional orchestras,” she says, adding that they work a lot with female and male songwriters. First Nations. “Classical music is a traditional form that goes back a long way, there is a entrenched conservatism in it, whether people are aware of it or not. [of it]. “

Later this month, a digital offering, Ensemble For All, will be launched. The first – which is free – features Edwardes playing solo. Register on the group’s website to get the live stream link.

The State Art Music Awards also went to Alex Raineri, the pianist and artistic director of the Brisbane Music Festival; Adelaide composer / educator Anne Cawrse; and founding editor of Cut common magazine, Stephanie Eslake in Tasmania.


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