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Art Music Awards

2020 Art Music Awards

About the Awards

The 2020 Art Music Awards will be presented as a virtual ceremony on Tuesday 8 September 2020 on Youtube. Read more about the virtual Art Music Awards (Resonate 30 July 2020).

Finalists for the 2020 Awards will be announced on Tuesday 11 August.

The yearly Art Music Awards are presented by the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA) and the Australian Music Centre to recognise achievement in the composition, performance, education and presentation of Australian music.

In 2020, there are a number of changes in the categories and the nomination process of the Art Music Awards. We have broader categories for Work of the Year, a stronger multi-genre approach to Performance of the Year and Excellence categories, and we have also introduced new sustained contribution 'Luminary' Awards on both national and state levels.

Categories for the 2020 Art Music Awards

• Work of the Year: Choral
• Work of the Year: Large Ensemble
• Work of the Year: Dramatic
• Work of the Year: Electroacoustic / Sound Art
• Work of the Year: Jazz
• Work of the Year: Chamber Music
• Performance of the Year: Notated Composition
• Performance of the Year: Jazz / Improvised Music
• Award for Excellence in Music Education
• Award for Excellence in a Regional Area
• Award for Excellence in Experimental Music
• Luminary Award - Individual
• Luminary Award - Organisation
• Luminary Awards - State/Territory Awards
• Richard Gill Award for Distinguished Services to Australian Music

Event details

Tuesday 8 September at 7pm AEST - streaming live on YouTube
With host Jonathan Biggins and music curation by Barney McAll



Please read the full guidelines for the 2020 Art Music Awards.

Nominations for the 2020 Awards were accepted for works and activities in the 2019 calendar year.

A number of changes were made to the categories and the nominations process. The number of Work of Year categories was expanded to give a dedicated space for electronic works (under Electroacoustic/Sound Art), and to works for the theatre such as opera, music theatre, and ballet (under the Dramatic category). Vocal, instrumental and orchestral works were assessed based on number of forces with 1 to 12 players defined as Chamber Music, and larger works as Large Ensemble. Works for choir remain as a separate category (Choral). In the case of multiple options/nominations, the composer was able to elect in which category the work was considered.

Performance of the Year expanded to two categories, noting the difference in realising a composer's intent (Performance of the Year: Notated Composition) and devising and creating new content (Performance of the Year: Jazz / Improvised Music). The Awards for Excellence (Music EducationRegional and Experimental Music) remain structurally the same, but with an increased focus on inclusivity - these categories are for our jazz and experimental communities as well as our classical community.

The Awards for Excellence by an Individual, Organisation and the State Awards were combined into a new group of awards: the Luminary Awards. The Luminary Awards seek to honour individuals and organisations for their sustained contribution (demonstrated over a period of the last 3-5 years). The Awards will be presented on state level (State Awards) and nationally in the categories of National (Individual) and National (Organisation). Unlike in previous years, State Awards were be specifically nominated for, focusing on the nominee's contribution to their local community. 

Nominations were accepted from AMC members (you can join here) and APRA AMCOS members (Composer, Author or Publisher member). Nominators can only nominate once for each award category each year, and self-nomination is not possible in any category. The online nomination process in 2020 was simplified: in addition to essential details regarding the category, nominee etc., a short paragraph detailing the reasons for nomination was required.

> Read a longer article about the changes introduced in 2020, written by the APRA AMCOS Art Music Specialist Cameron Lam.