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11 September 2018

Australia Council grants: Fellowship to Katy Abbott; new operas funded

Katy Abbott Image: Katy Abbott  
© Nicholas Purcell Photography

The Australia Council for the Arts has awarded a 2-year Fellowship ($80,000 over two years) to composer Katy Abbott, as part of the most recent grant round. Melbourne-based Abbott will be able to concentrate on composing two new large-scale works, as well as undertake strategic career planning and travel.

'The timing of this Fellowship couldn't be better. It provides me with time and resources to develop two significant works and to travel internationally with existing orchestral pieces. The creation of a large work can be career-defining, and the Fellowship offers me the opportunity, in terms of time and space, to compose two more significant pieces in my Hidden Thoughts series', Abbott said.

Among other grants for individuals and organisations, announced this week, Sydney Chamber Opera secured a grant of almost $100,000 for developing a new work by composer Elliott Gyger and librettist Pierce Wilcox, based on Peter Carey's novel Oscar and Lucinda - the pair are known for their successful collaboration Fly Away Peter (2015), an opera based on David Malouf's novel. Oscar and Lucinda will be premiered at Sydney's Carriageworks in August 2019. Another opera project funded as part of this round is Cat Hope's Speechless ($29,500 for the completion of the work and presenting it at the 2019 Perth Festival).

Arcko Symphonic Ensemble's grant of $32,700 will go towards their 2019 programs featuring the music of Liza Lim, Andrew Harrison and Rohan Phillips. Other AMC-represented artists successful in this round include Thomas Meadowcroft ($13,800 for a new work developed at the South West German Radio Experimental Studio); Kate Neal ($34,500 for final development and presentation of While You Sleep incorporating music, screen and theatrical content); Jon Rose ($22,440 for performances and installations at Substation in 2019); and Luke Styles ($15,000 for a new concerto for oboist Ben Opie).

Genevieve Lacey will get $27,535 for final development and premiere of Soliloquy, directed by Gideon Obarzanek. Louise Devenish's $24,000 will go towards commissioning new work from Annie Hsieh and Matthias Schack-Arnott. Project grants of various sizes were also awarded to Joseph Franklin, Rachael Dease, Judith Hamann, Matt Keegan, Lamorna Nightingale (for recording new Australian electroacoustic flute works), Vanessa Perica, Alex Raineri (commissions by Lyle Chan, Lachlan Skipworth, Damien Ricketson, Kate Moore, and Gerard Brophy, for a new work Bloodpaths in collaboration with dancer/choreographer Katina Olsen) and James Rushford, among others. Included in the same grant round was funding for various festivals and music organisations, including Pro Musica (for Canberra International Music Festival), Tilde New Music and Queensland Music Festival.

> For a full list of awarded grants, including categories and sums, see the Australia Council for the Arts website. See also: press release with facts and figures about this grant round (11 September 2018).


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