Board and Staff

Music Australia is a not for profit proprietary limited company with a national board of directors, and 50 expert Councillors who include nominees of national music organisations and individual experts. Music Australia has Deductible Gift Recipient status and receives multiyear funding from the Australian Government’s Department of Education, Skills and Employment.

Music Australia has a Sydney office with two staff, as well as a large network of partners, contributors and contractors committed to the promotion and development of its programs.

Music Australia Board of Directors


Michael Smellie (2022) Chair

Michael’s career in the music business spans more than 25 years and across five continents as former Global Chief Operations Officer of Sony BMG, Asia Pacific Head for BMG, and Managing Director of Polygram and rooArt in Australia. As COO for BMG worldwide, he directed the company through some turbulent years and was an integral part of negotiating and implementing the merger with Sony Music. He was appointed COO of Sony BMG in 2004 before leaving in 2005 to return to Australia. Until the end of 2008, he was President of Media Development, Asia Pacific for German media giant Bertelsmann. He is an investor, adviser and board member to a number of start-up creative businesses in Australia and the United States.

Ryan Miller, NSW (2020) Treasurer

Ryan is a qualified accountant holding a Bachelor of Commerce degree and membership of the Institute of Chartered Accountants. He has over 15 years’ experience in business services and public practice accounting working with many not for profit and for profit organisations. The services I have been fortunate enough to provide the not for profit sector include the provision of audit services, accounting and taxation, internal control and policy and procedures reviews, management reporting and liaising with Boards as well as budgeting, cash flows and forecasting. Ryan has a passion for all types of music and looks forward to bringing his enthusiasm and skills to the organisation to assist with all things financial. Ryan is Chair of Music Australia’s Finance Committee.

Ed St John (2020)

Ed St John started in music in 1977 as a critic and writer for Rolling Stone Magazine, spending a decade documenting the halcyon days of Australian rock in the company of artists such as INXS, Midnight Oil and Cold Chisel. From the mid-80s Ed added TV writing and production, working on Rock Around the World (SBS), Edge of the Wedge (ABC), Saturday Morning Live (Seven) and Tonight Live with Steve Vizard (Seven). In 1993 Ed shifted to music marketing as Director of Marketing at Columbia Records Australia for four years, then Director of Marketing at BMG Australia. After two years, he was appointed Managing Director, and in 2005 became President and CEO of Warner Music Australia until 2010. Ed has served on the boards of the PPCA and ARIA, been ARIA chair for one year and Chairman of the ARIA Awards for a decade. More recently Ed has worked in consulting roles including casting judges for The Voice and X Factor. He is currently Executive General Manager of The Ethics Centre and Chairman of Valleyarm Digital.

Dr Brydie Leigh-Bartleet (2022)

Dr Brydie-Leigh Bartleet is Deputy Director of the Queensland Conservatorium Research Centre and Convenor of the Music and Communities Strand. She has worked on a range of national and international projects in community music, arts-based service learning with Australian First Peoples, intercultural community arts, and arts-based health and wellbeing for refugee and asylum seekers. She is the new Chair of the International Society for Music Education’s Community Music Activities Commission, and serves on a range of international and national boards including the International Journal of Music Education – Practice, the International Journal of Community Music, the Asia Pacific Community Music Network, and the Commonwealth Creativities in Intercultural Arts Network, to mention a few. As a community music facilitator she has worked with bands, orchestras, choirs, and jazz ensembles from Australia, Thailand, Singapore and Taiwan.

Catherine Gerrard, NSW (2020)

Catherine’s corporate experience features the role of Executive Director and business owner of a music publishing enterprise, multiple music industry Board Directorships and work as the creator of an Australia-wide contemporary popular music education program. Catherine has also led a team of 45 people as APRA’s Director of Publisher Relations and Repertoire. She is currently working with Wise Music as Classical Promotions Consultant.

Nicholas Pickard, NSW (2022)

Nicholas Pickard is the Executive Director of Public Affairs at APRA AMCOS. Nicholas has managed the profile and reputation of organisations and public figures across government, transport and infrastructure, creative industries and the media for over a decade. A former journalist, theatre critic and policy adviser to federal and state government arts ministers, his experience includes orchestrating the narrative and communications plans of everything from Heathrow Airport’s expansion campaign, the Creative Australia national cultural policy, Local Government urban rejuvenation projects to ministerial delegations, change management strategies and arts festivals. Nicholas is Chair of the Australian Society of Authors and a Board Member of Regional Arts NSW.

Trudi Cosgrove, NSW (2022)

Trudi is a passionate Primary music educator with 25 years of teaching experience in Sydney Primary schools, both private and public. Her involvement in Richard Gill’s National Music Teacher Mentoring Program (NMTMP) NSW from its 2015 pilot, has enabled the delivery of enriched music education practice in Primary schools by providing generalist classroom teachers with strategies and practices to engage students in quality music education. Trudi has been involved in the University of Queensland NMTMP research conducted by Professor Margaret Barrett. NESA experience includes curriculum writing, consultation, feedback and review of Creative Arts K-6. Department roles have included consultation on Draft Directions for NSW Creative Arts K-6 Syllabus and development of a Department music resource for NSW schools. Trudi’s current teaching role involves daily classroom music lessons, choral and instrumental ensembles and performances across a Primary school of 1400 students. Her formal qualifications include a Bachelor of Primary Education (Hons) Sydney University.

Yvonne Zammit, NSW (2022) 

Yvonne is currently Director of Corporate Affairs at Opera Australia, a role she has held since January 2018. Prior to this, Yvonne worked at the Sydney Symphony Orchestra for 12 years where she led the Corporate Sponsorship, Philanthropy, Government Relations and Public Relations functions of the company. Before joining the SSO, Yvonne worked in corporate and financial public relations and marketing in both Sydney and London. As an accomplished violinist, Yvonne has taught violin privately and at schools throughout her life and regularly performs with the North Sydney Symphony Orchestra.

Emma Magill, VIC (2022) 

Emma Magill is the Publishing Manager for Primary Education at Oxford University Press ANZ. She has worked in the educational publishing industry for over 20 years in both the UK and Australia, and has experience across print and digital publishing for academic journals, higher education, secondary and primary. Between 2010-2013 she was the Managing Editor for Rhinegold Education, a specialist music education business then owned by Music Sales Ltd, and she has worked for major global publishers including John Wiley & Sons and Macmillan Education. She was a member of the Education and Training Committee of the UK Music Publishers Association (2012-2013), a member of the Schools Committee of the Australian Publishers Association (2013-2017), chair of the 2017 Educational Publishing Awards Australia committee, and a judge for the 2019 Children’s Word of the Year.

To contact a Music Australia Board Member please contact [email protected] 

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