Finalists announced for the virtual 2020 Art Music Awards

Reflecting a record number of nominations

The finalists for the virtual 2020 Art Music Awards have been announced, selected from a record number of nominations.

Cat Hope, Julian Day, Amanda Cole, Linda May Han Oh, Netanela Mizrahi and Guwanbal Gurruwiwi are among the artists nominated as part of the annual celebration of composition, performance, education and presentation of Australian art music. Find the full list of nominations below.

According to a statement, 278 nominations across 13 categories were received, with a significant number of emerging composers from across Australia making the list of finalists.


Last month, APRA AMCOS and the Australian Music Centre announced the tenth Art Music Awards would go ahead online this year, featuring socially distanced performances from some of the nominees.

Award categories have been blended or expanded from previous years, which organisers of the Art Music Awards said was “to meet the needs of and acknowledge the ever-evolving art music sector”.

This year’s Art Music Awards will also include new Luminary Awards, “recognising sustained contributions by individuals and organisations”, with no shortlists for those categories.

The prestigious Richard Gill Award for Distinguished Services to Australian Music will also be presented, determined by APRA’s Board of Directors.

The 2020 Art Music Awards will be broadcast on Tuesday September 8 at 7pm AEST via YouTube.

The 2020 Art Music Awards finalists are:


Work of the Year: Choral

Title – ‘A Civic Space’
Composer – Julian Day
Performer – Musicians from the Barossa region

Title – ‘I am Martuwarra’
Composer – Paul Stanhope, text by Steve Hawke
Performer – Gondwana Choirs, Luminescence Chamber Singers, Valla Voices, Hunter Singers, Resonance, Lyn Williams

Title – ‘Requiem-Recomposed’
Composer – Gordon Hamilton
Performer – Omega Ensemble, The Australian Voices and Gordon Hamilton

Title – ‘Singing the Love’
Composer – Ross Edwards
Performer – Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, Stephen Cleobury

Work of the Year: Dramatic
Title – ‘Ned Kelly’
Composer – Luke Styles, librettist Peter Goldsworthy
Performer – Lost and Found Opera, Chris van Tuinen

Title – ‘Oscar and Lucinda’
Composer – Elliott Gyger, librettist Pierce Wilcox
Performer – Sydney Chamber Opera, Jack Symonds

Title – ‘Out of Chaos’
Composer – Ekrem Eli Phoenix
Performer – Gravity and Other Myths

Title – ‘Speechless’
Composer – Cat Hope
Performer – Judith Dodsworth, Karina Utomo, Tara Tiba, Sage Pbbbt (soloists), Australian Bass Orchestra, Decibel New Music Ensemble, Aaron Wyatt

Work of the Year: Jazz
Title – ‘Aventurine’
Composer – Linda May Han Oh
Performer – Linda May Han Oh, Greg Ward, Matt Mitchell, Ches Smith, Fung Chern Hwei, Sara Caswell, Benni von Gutzeit, Jeremy Harman, Invenio with Gian Slater

Title – ‘Displacement’
Composer – Josh Kelly
Performer – Josh Kelly, Niran Dasika, Aviva Endean, Mary Rapp, Jacques Emery, Maria Moles

Title – ‘The Colours of Grief’
Composer – Adam Page
Performer – The Adam Page Ensemble

Title – ‘Umi No Uzu’
Composer – Aaron Choulai
Performer – Australian Art Orchestra, Aaron Choulai, Miyama McQueen-Tokita, Kojoe

Work of the Year: Large Ensemble
Title – ‘Beatrice’
Composer – Kate Moore
Performer – Vivian Choi, piano, Willoughby Symphony, Fabian Russell

Title – ‘Flinders and Trim’
Composer – Maria Grenfell
Performer – Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Eivind Aadland

Title – ‘Icarus’
Composer – Harry Sdraulig
Performer – Lloyd Hudson, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Elena Schwarz

Title – ‘Viola Concerto’
Composer – James Ledger
Performer – Brett Dean, West Australian Symphony Orchestra, Fabien Gabel

Work of the Year: Chamber Music
Title – ‘Cleave’
Composer – Natasha Anderson
Performer – Ensemble Offspring, International Contemporary Ensemble, Ensemble Adapter

Title – ‘passing bells: day’
Composer – Chris Dench
Performer – Alex Raineri

Title – ‘String Quartet no. 3: Hidden Agendas’
Composer – Brett Dean
Performer – Doric String Quartet
Publisher – Hal Leonard/Boosey & Hawkes Group

Title: – ‘Where The Quiet Rests’
Composer – John Pax
Performer – WasteLAnd

Work of the Year: Electroacoustic/Sound Art
Title – ‘Coronal Mass’
Composer – Amanda Cole, with lead artist Michaela Gleave, programmer Warren Armstrong, sound engineer Bob Scott, scientists Martin Connors and Ian Schofield

Title – ‘Diaspora’
Composer – Robin Fox and Erkki Veltheim in a Chamber Made Production
Performer – Robin Fox, Erkki Veltheim, Madeleine Flynn, Georgie Darvidis, Tamara Saulwick (co-direction/dramaturgy), Nick Roux (video artist)

Title – ‘Everywhen’
Composer – Matthias Schack-Arnott
Performer – Matthias Schack-Arnott

Title – ‘Imago’
Composer – Fiona Hill
Performer – Lamorna Nightingale, Jane Sheldon, Fiona Hill

Performance of the Year: Jazz/Improvised Music
Performer – Australian Art Orchestra
Title – ‘The Plains’
Composer – Peter Knight

Performer – Joseph Franklin
Title – ‘Amen’
Composer – Joseph Franklin

Performer – Phil Slater Quintet
Title – ‘The Cordeaux Mirror’
Composer – Phil Slater

Performer – Sandy Evans, Shubha Mudgal, Aneesh Pradhan, Sirens Big Band
Title – ‘Bridge of Dreams’
Composer – Sandy Evans, Shubha Mudgal, Aneesh Pradhan

Performance of the Year: Notated Composition
Performer – Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Douglas Boyd
Title – ‘Weave’
Composer – Cathy Milliken

Performer – Louise Devenish
Title – ‘Sheets of Sound’
Composers – Annie Hui-Hsin Hsieh, Matthias Schack-Arnott, Louise Devenish, Stuart James

Performer – Sydney Chamber Opera, Jack Symonds
Title – ‘Oscar and Lucinda’
Composer – Elliott Gyger, librettist Pierce Wilcox

Performer – Zubin Kanga
Title – ‘Rhythm City’
Composer – Tristan Coelho