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5 November 2012

Harvey's PGH Address reaches a wide audience - transcript now available

Michael Kieran Harvey Image: Michael Kieran Harvey  

Pianist and composer Michael Kieran Harvey's Peggy Glanville-Hicks address can now be read in its entirety on the New Music Network website. The yearly address, organised by the New Music Network, was presented by Harvey in Sydney on 22 October and in Melbourne on 2 November. After the Melbourne event and the broadcast of the address on ABC Radio National, Harvey's speech has become something of a social media phenomenon, with numerous artists linking to the transcript and celebrating Harvey's passionate delivery.

Asking 'What would Peggy do?', Harvey demanded more Australian music to be performed by Australian orchestras, and suggested the level of public funding for orchestras and opera be made dependent on Australian content in season programs. The current percentage of stage time devoted to Australian works is about 7%, and Harvey suggested this be increased to 50%. He also called for more emphasis on music education in schools and all other music-aligned bodies.

About the Australian Music Centre and its funding he had this to say:

'Why [...] is this amazing resource, under the dogged and inspired leadership of John Davis, not directly federally funded like the National Film and Sound Archives or indeed the National Library, such that its important work is not constantly impeded by endless funding applications and mystifying movements of the goalposts? Why is the AMC at a crisis point and facing eviction?! Peggy would wonder, as do I.'

And, later:

'The Australian Music Centre is our main dedicated resource of Australian fine musical content and intellectual property. It should not have to go begging to the Australia Council for its funding along with the very artists it represents, but should be directly funded by the federal government'

Michael Kieran Harvey spoke against competitiveness in music and went on to call for a boycott of all music competitions. He also suggested a ban on Australian taxpayers' dollars being used to fund music and opera 'beloved of white supremacists', as well as a ban on Australian tax dollars being used to fund 'international artist management groups and their conservative artists'.

Further links

14th Peggy Glanville-Hicks Address (transcript on the New Music Network website)
Michael Kieran Harvey - AMC profile
Peggy Glanville-Hicks - AMC profile

The Australian Music Centre connects people around the world to Australian composers and sound artists. By facilitating the performance, awareness and appreciation of music by these creative artists, it aims to increase their profile and the sustainability of their art form. Established in 1974, the AMC is now the leading provider of information, resources, materials and products relating to Australian new music.


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