The annual Art Music Awards, presented by APRA AMCOS and the Australian Music Centre (AMC), represent about the highest recognition that a composer, performer, individual or organisation involved in art music (call it new classical music if you prefer) in this country can receive. Indeed, as APRA and AMC describe these Awards, they are “the only event that specifically acknowledges the achievements of Australia’s outstanding talent in the fields of composition, performance, education and presentation of Australian art music”.
A list of this year’s finalists has been released ahead of presentation night on Monday 19 August at the University of Sydney’s Great Hall. Composers Cathy Milliken, Carl Vine, Elena Kats-Chernin and Melody Eötvös are finalists for Orchestral Work of the Year, while Mary Finsterer, Elizabeth Younan, Robert Davidson and Andrew Ford are in the line-up for Instrumental Work of the Year.
There are four contenders for the Award for Excellence by an Organisation: Canberra International Music Festival, City Recital Hall, Plexus and Zephyr Quartet.
How it works is that the combined national committees for the awards meet by teleconference to ratify the outcomes. Any ties are resolved by additional committee votes.
A clutch of other categories will be also decided: Vocal Work of the Year, Jazz Work of the Year, Performance of the Year, the Award for Excellence by an Individual, the Award for Excellence by an Organisation, the Award for Excellence in Music Education, the Award for Excellence in a Regional Area, the Award for Excellence in Experimental Music, and the Award for Excellence in Jazz. There are finalists for all of these too. Plus there are various state and territory awards.
A newly created award called the Richard Gill Award for Distinguished Services to Australian Music will be presented.
Keep up-to-date with it all here.