30 September 2020. The inaugural MOMENTUM Commission ($5,000) has been awarded to composer, multi-instrumentalist Rae Howell, and her proposal to write a number of works for solo piano, including works suitable for beginner to intermediate level players.
Rae Howell works across a broad range of genres in collaboration with performing and visual artists, in theatre, film, dance, concert hall, and multimedia productions. Over several years, she has worked on an extensive, international research development project Bee-Sharp Honeybee, and explains her current need to focus on works in a more intimate scale and nature:
'Given my most recent and ambitious large-scale project of many collaborators, across multiple disciplines and continents, I choose and plan to reduce my intense stresses of logistics and organisation, to focus on my original area of compositional practice, solo piano.'
The assessment panel (Annette Tesoriero, Natalie Williams, Aaron Wyatt, and Paul Mason) was overwhelmed with the range of proposals presented to them to assess as a result of the first MOMENTUM call for expressions of interest.
'Given the number of highly worthy and highly creative applications, it was a very difficult task, particularly given the circumstances that all the applicants shared, and the challenges that they faced this year. The panel measured each application against the donor's intentions, as expressed in the call for applications. The donor is delighted with the outcome, and wishes Rae the very best in realising her plans', the panel commented.
AMC's CEO John Davis said, 'We're very grateful to the donor - one of our leading composers who has chosen to remain anonymous - for initiating this commission, particularly as this generous gesture has inspired others to do similarly, enabling us to offer additional MOMENTUM commissions to create a series. We are, of course, always open to others stepping forward with support that assists artists in very direct ways.'
About the inaugural MOMENTUM Commission.
Initiated by a leading Australian composer, who generously provided an amount of $5,000 to fund this opportunity, the first MOMENTUM Commission was designed to offer practical support to a composer to forge forward with the essential work of creating art amidst the uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The commission recognised that resilience and positive momentum are integral to creative process, and was intended to provide a breathing and thinking space within which the work of art may continue to flourish.
This opportunity acknowledged the current need for established composers/creators who don’t have ongoing employment, or a regular income, to be able to develop and/or create a new work. Candidates for this opportunity needed to demonstrate that they have already produced a significant body of work over some time.
Possible ideal outcomes, as stated in the call for Expressions of Interest, included the completion of a work for live performance either in a concert presentation or via an online platform, or furthering the creative development of a larger project.
Applicants needed to be established composers - Australian citizens or permanent residents - who have developed a significant body of work over some time, and were current members of the AMC.
Call issued: end of July 2020.
Application deadline: 5pm AEST on Friday 21 August.
Result announced: September.
Report by: 31 January 2021 outlining details of the work undertaken.