Australian Music Prize 2020 prize money may be affected by loss of sponsors, director warns

“Due to the virus and to a lesser degree the bushfires”

The Australian Music Prize’s 2020 prize money – a sum of $30,000 – may be affected by a loss of sponsorship revenue due to the coronavirus pandemic, director Scott Murphy has warned.

“Due to the virus, and to a lesser degree the bushfires, revenue from sponsorship may not be enough to cover typical marketing costs nor the prize money, come March 2021,” Murphy told NME Australia.

“Every year since the [inaugural] 2005 prize, many industry businesses have supported the AMP, mostly via cash sponsorship. I will be asking this of them again soon and I believe most will want to continue their support – but of course, there will be some that cannot.”


Murphy said that “all options [for sponsorship and investment] are always considered if they help our aim: to discover, reward and promote those Australian artists writing, producing and marketing the best new music.”

However Murphy was quick to note that it’s “business as usual at this point” for the AMP, and “there’s not going to be any change of operations”.

Rapper Sampa The Great is the latest recipient of the Australian Music Prize, snagging the $30,000 prize money for her 2019 album ‘The Return’. That win made her the only artist to have won the award twice in its history, as she won in 2017 for her mixtape ‘The Birds And The BEE9’.

Murphy said that for many artists, often the recognition in winning the Australian Music Prize outweighs the monetary reward.

“I’ve had plenty of artists over the years tell me this – either directly, or through the media,” he said.


Artists and the industry, Murphy thinks, “will be slightly saddened” should the prize money be reduced, “but will completely understand given the world[’s] economic state”.

Additional reporting by Anna Rose