With the support of the James N. Kirby Foundation, the Sydney Symphony (SSO) presented an enormously successful Sinfonietta Composition Project in 2011. Working closely with students and their classroom teachers, the program guides young composers from a compositional idea to the submission of a finished work. Finalists are selected to attend a workshop residency in Sydney under the direction of esteemed Australian conductor and educator, Richard Gill OAM.
This year’s project saw the SSO Education Team work with 261 teachers representing all Australian states and territories, and comprehensive classroom teaching resources were supplemented by professional development seminars in Sydney, Melbourne and Launceston. This was the first time the SSO was able to address the need for these seminars outside of Sydney – a direct result of James N. Kirby Foundation support.
With the help of their teachers, students made some outstanding breakthroughs in the development of their own compositions and the SSO received many fine submissions. Five finalists, aged 13-18, were flown to Sydney from Victoria, Tasmania, Coffs Harbour and Milton, where they joined one local finalist for a three-day composition workshop with Richard Gill. The project culminated in a public workshop, attended by high school students from Sydney and Tasmania, where the finalists’ works were performed and discussed.
Thank you to the James N. Kirby Foundation for its generous support and for sharing the vision of the SSO to support music education in Australian schools by developing our teachers and providing life-changing experiences for our students.
Head of Philanthropy and Public Affairs Sydney Symphony