Artology’s Fanfare competition returns alongside two other opportunities

Competitions for young composers also includes opportunity to create a musical acknowledgement to country, plus a short film festival.

Limelight Magazine written by Hugh Robertson on 27 January, 2022

Artology have opened submissions for their annual Fanfare competition, and have also announced a new competition for budding young composers: To Country.

Fanfare, winner of the 2016 Art Music Award for Excellent in Music Education and now in its eighth year, asks young composers to write a 30-second composition designed to be played before the start of concerts to encourage audiences to take their seats. Open to anyone aged 12-21, the judges are looking for compositions “that have something to say” rather than those from strong musical backgrounds.

A number of applicants will be given the opportunity to develop their Fanfares under the guidance of the program’s mentors, composers Nicholas Vines, Lyle Chan, Jessica Wells and Chrysoulla Markoulli. From there, applicants can be selected for a recording session with Australian Youth Orchestra, concerts with the Sydney and Queensland Youth Orchestras, or a workshop with Adelaide Youth Orchestras.

Writing in Limelight in the lead-up to their works being performed by Queensland Youth Orchestras’ Chamber Orchestra, some of the 2021 participants said that being selected for the program was “a great honour”, and one that “helped me to realise the kind of composer I want to be”.

Offered for the first time in 2022, To Country is a new competition encouraging budding composers to create a one-minute musical acknowledgement to country. Like Fanfare it will involve mentoring workshops followed by performances and workshops with youth orchestras around the country.

To Country is being mentored by Christopher Sainsbury, composer and Associate Professor in Composition at the Australian National University (ANU).

“To Country is a dedicated program for young composers that provides an Indigenous-led view of First Nations ways and matters in the 21st century,” says Sainsbury. “It will enable normalising engagement with the people of our First Nations, so setting a template for young composer-musicians throughout their lives, and all through the sharing of music in a composer mentoring program.”

Fanfare mentor Lyle Chan is also excited at the addition of the To Country program.

“The time has come for a program like this,” he says. “One that systematically trains young people in the artistic expression of their thoughts about land and indigenous culture. Imagine if every young person grows up with the idea that acknowledging country is a natural and everyday thing to do. We could get true harmony – in both the musical and societal sense.”

Applicants can enter both Fanfare and To Country, but must submit a different piece of music to each competition. Submissions for Fanfare and To Country close 6 June 2022.

And if film-making rather than composing is where your passions lie, Artology is also partnering with Spring Bay Mill to present the Very Short Film Festival. Applicants are required to submit a two to five-minute film which includes a reference to the competition’s 2022 theme ‘spring’, with prizes offered in the junior category (21 years of age or under at the time of entry) and the open category.

Judges for the Very Short Film Festival include author, filmmaker and actor Leah Purcell, and director, writer and editor Justin Kurzel, with prizes including mentorship, cash prizes of $500 to $5,000, and travel and accommodation to attend the Premier Event at Spring Bay Mill in Tasmania.

Submissions for the Very Short Film Festival close 25 April 2022.

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