The Music Trust works with energy, imagination and authority for music in Australia

Welcome to The Music Trust

The Music Trust was founded in October 2013. Its mission is stated in the banner. Key information can be found under ABOUT on the menu bar.

Check out the menu bar. MUSIC IN AUSTRALIA is a deep information source. EDUCATION is primarily about advocacy for school music and includes important research about its benefits. FREEDMAN is for the prestigious Freedman Music Fellowships. LOUDMOUTH takes you to the current edition of the Trust's monthly ezine.

Trust the music!

Jose Carbo’s CD, My Latin Heart

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What The Music Trust is doing

The Music Trust has redesigned its Music in Australia Knowledge Base. The information is presented in a new structure which enables readers to find all the articles pertaining to particular sets of activities in music in Australia – for instance, various spheres of music education, the relationship between music and current issues of social concern, performance in particular musical genres, the business of music, government interventions, Australian music in its international context. A new program of addition of articles begins in the second week of August.

The Music Trust has instigated and funded a composition competition for young people, to compose a song in support of climate action. The competition is being managed by Green Music Australia.

The Trust is also supported the Symphony for Life Foundation, which runs an ‘El Sistema’ style program for mostly young immigrant children in the Wentworthville area in Western Sydney. The program is free to the children. They attend two afternoons a week in normal times, are loaned instruments, given instrumental training and form into two small symphony orchestras of around 30 members each. During COVID, they are being taught online with weekly individual lessons.

The Music Trust is organising the Freedman Music Fellowships, now in their twentieth year. You can see the report in the centre column.

The Trust’s monthly online magazine, Loudmouth, has just published its 50th edition! See the contents for August summarised in the right hand column.


Freedman Music Fellowships

Rajiv Jayaweera at Freedman Jazz 2013.
Photo by Keith Saunders

Reporting at the beginning of August 2020. Four finalists have been chosen for the Freedman Classical Fellowship 2020: violinist Grace Clifford, violinist Harry Ward, cellist James Morley and cellist Richard Narroway. This is one of the strongest fields ever for the Fellowship, now in its 20th year.
Normally the winner is chosen at a concert of finalists. That was scheduled to take place on August 1 in the Utzon Room at the Sydney Opera House. But social distancing rules closed the entire facility and all other concert venues. Various alternative scenarios have been adopted and given up. At this point we believe we have a strategy that will enable the winner to be chosen at the end of August. Watch this space, Loudmouth magazine and the Freedman Fellowship Facebook page.
The Freedman Jazz Fellowship is expected to be awarded in October. The sixteen nominees have sent in their applications and the judges are about to begin listening to the recordings and reading the project proposals. Since it is expected that it will not be possible to present a concert of finalists in October, the plan is to produce videos of each of the finalists, use the videos as part of the assessment process and then stream them in an online concert.

Thanks as always to funding from the Freedman Foundation, without which the Fellowships are not possible.

Freedman Music Fellowship information

Music in Australia Knowledge Base

The only knowledge base in the world that deals systematically with the music of an entire country. Facts in words and numbers about music in Australia – and discussions of key issues facing various areas of musical activity.

Music in Australia has been entirely redesigned. Navigation is very much clearer; you can easily see everything to be found on the Knowledge Base, organised into categories where everything available on each topic is laid out clearly. A program to add another 50 articles will begin in the second week of August, 2020.

Primary School Music Education

There is a lot of thought and research behind school music education advocacy.

ARGUMENT FOR SPECIALIST MUSIC TEACHERS. Primary school music education in many states is in crisis. Teachers are not educated to teach music and in the majority of schools in most states, there is not a classroom music program. After decades of neglect, The Music Trust believes that the only – and best – solution is the introduction into every classroom of a specialist music teacher. Read the reasoning here.
There is a new reassessment of the advocacy arguments. Look under EDUCATION > ADVOCACY ARGUMENTS.

RESEARCH SUMMARY. There is abundant research in music education showing that its benefits extend well beyond learning music skills to improvements in IQ, academic outcomes,confidence, empathy, social skills and more. Read a quick summary of these research outcomes here.

Sign Up to Loudmouth - Music Trust Ezine

Music Trust Alert!

Here now, the Loudmouth e-zine for May 2022. Here are  the articles.


Election looming, so where is the arts policy?

3 Parties & the Arts. #1: The Greens have a well devised, coherent policy

3 Parties & the Arts. #2: Labor knows what its policy would include, if it had one

3 Parties & the Arts. #3: The Coalition governs; see what it does. Some policy indicators.

The Greens’ late arts policy announcement

Australian Academy of the Humanities: a cultural organisation’s policy position 2022

Ministerial patronage and government rorting of arts grants

Australian writing and publishing faces ‘grinding austerity’ as funding continues to decline

There’s no music on a dead planet.

Canada: The cultural sector needs support in order to benefit from a digital remake

Kentucky: Can this ‘grand experiment’ make Louisville a global centre of creative music-making?

JOSTLE. New Australian musical, new theatre / Acoustic Life of Boats / Ireland’s ‘Basic Income for the Arts’ / Labor’s intention with arts funding? / Arts Minister Fletcher’s 5 appointments to Australia Council / About Don Harwin / Australia Council’s new board members are primarily in commerce / Artists will be heard by European decision-makers / Paris Opera’s shift to salaried performers, fewer freelancers / Reminiscent of Opera Australia’s previous character / It looked as if Midem was gone for good.


INSIDE THE MUSICIAN. Stuart Vandegraaff:  Living on the Harmonics.

Chris Cody’s 10×10. INTERVIEW #9: Chris interviews bassist and vocalist Nicki Parrott

INSIDE THE MUSICIAN. Sally Walker: Musical Convergences – through ideal times, bushfires and a pandemic


THIS MUSICAL WORLD. Music Education. The Why.

The National Music Teacher Mentoring Program – a boon for early childhood education

Tuning up Gonski. Where’s the music education?

The ANAM SET: 67 special commissions for 67 students. Fantastic.

Can music slow the onset of neurodegenerative disease? Launch of new research

Flow state, exercise and healthy ageing: 5 unexpected benefits of singing

Is this now the Federal government’s most bone-headed idea ever?


INSIDE THE MUSICIAN. Barry Conyngham: What is it about ‘Ice Carving’?

Can artists revive dead city centres? Without long-term tenancies it’s window dressing

Refugee students struggle with displacement and trauma. Here are 3 ways schools can help them belong

David Lumsdaine is 90!

Local, face-to-face support offers a lifeline for uni students in regional and remote Australia

INSIDE THE MUSICIAN. Charles MacInnes: Cassettes

If your name were a melody, how would it sound? Communities in Ethiopia and PNG name people with unique individual tunes


The Freedman Classical Fellow 2021 is violinist Kyla Matsuura-Miller.

Posting includes a description of Kyla’s Freedman project and a recording of her playing a solo work for violin by Bach.



Music and Book Reviews

THE BEST MUSIC REVIEWS page in Australia. Written mainly by musicians.



The Idea of Australia. A search for the soul of the nation. By Julianne Schultz.

Music composition in contexts of early childhood. Acker et al.

My Tongue Is My Own: A Life of Gwen Harwood. Anne-Marie Priest

Silent Films/Loud Music: New Ways of Listening and Thinking about Silent Film Music Phillip Johnston

Sounds Wild and Broken. Sonic marvels, evolution’s creativity and the crisis of sensory extinction. David George Haskell



Schumann Cello. Zoe Knighton, Amir Farid


Five Rooms. Screamfeeder


Beautiful World. Frances Madden

Between Panic and Peace. Barnett, Anning, Keller

Grateful. Mat Jodrell

Places, People. Novak Manojlovic

Ripper. John Sangster


Known Unknown. Song Company, Tonus Peregrinus.


Reach the archive of reviews and articles by clicking on the banners heading each section or via the menu bar at this address:

Read the LoudMouth Reviews

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