News: Arts

Announcing 2018 American-Australian Arts Fund Round One Recipients

Wednesday, August 22, 2018   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Rollette Lusanta
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   The American-Australian Arts Fund provides emerging and early-career artists the opportunity to advance in the fields of theatre, film, television, dance, visual arts, design, literature, photography and fashion and develop their talents with leading mentors and educators.  In recognizing the energizing effects of new environments, collaborations and educational opportunities, the Association has awarded to talented young artists, more than 500 grants, totaling over $1 million, over the past twenty years.   

Courtenay Cleary - Violinist


Courtenay is an Australian violinist on a full scholarship at the Royal Academy of Music. In 2017 Courtenay performed solo Bach for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Abbey, broadcast live on BBC television. Whilst in London, she has performed as a soloist at prestigious venues including the Wigmore Hall, Buckingham Palace, St James’ Piccadilly and Colston Hall. This year Courtenay has concerto engagements with the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra and the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra in Sydney. She is a Tait Memorial Trust and The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music scholar and was recently awarded second prize at the Australian Concerto and Vocal Competition.

William Gardiner - Composer


William is an emerging Australian composer of music for acoustic and electronic instruments. He is a graduate of Yale School of Music, where he was mentored by David Lang, and Sydney University, where his teachers included Anne Boyd and Paul Stanhope. In addition to formal studies, he has also worked in electronic music production with Ben Frost at the Greenhouse Studios in Reykjavik, Iceland. In 2017 he was commissioned by the composer John Adams and his partner Deborah O’Grady to write a cello concerto for the Berkeley Symphony and cellist Tessa Seymour to celebrate Adams’ 70th birthday year.

Belle Bassin - Visual Artist

Belle is an experimental visual artist from Melbourne Australian, she holds a Bachelors of Fine Arts from the Victorian College of the Arts and a Master Fine Arts from Monash University. Throughout her 11-year exhibition history, she has consistently pursued new formats and modes of presentation, exhibiting within urban and biological spaces and within galleries and museums in Australia, Asia and Europe. Situated at the intersection of sculpture and performance, her work often fixates upon the sentient dimension of colour and form. Her practice is presently concerned with early female Abstraction, the psychic space of visions, and the occupation of bodies and space by invisible forces.

Benjamin Heim - Composer

Benjamin is an Australian composer and multimedia performer specialising in immersive events and the intersection between technological innovation and expressive performance. As a commercial composer he has scored TV adverts (Westfield Australia/Sibling Agency), virtual reality video games (Space Crawl, Hyperfine Studios), and produced live immersive radio shows (Illuminae, Brisbane Writers Festival). In the contemporary classical realm, Benjamin's concert works have received premieres across Europe and Australia, including in Tallinn Music Week (Estonia), the Royal College of Music (London), and the Haydn Saal in Vienna. In 2018 he will lead the AAVS in LA as an immersive audio specialist.

Angela Little - Screen Composer

Angela is a screen composer from Sydney, Australia. Her first major credit was Baz Luhrmann’s film “Australia”, for which she composed Additional Music and co-wrote and sang the film’s love song, which was nominated for numerous national and international awards. Since then, Angela has lent her talents to a diverse range of projects, including collaborating with Oscar-nominated composer Marco Beltrami as a vocal soloist on 2016 blockbuster “Gods of Egypt” and composing the score for AACTA-nominated feature documentary “Zach’s Ceremony”, which also won the audience award for Best Documentary at both Sydney and Melbourne International Film Festivals in 2016. 


 Founded in 1948 by Sir Keith Murdoch, the American Australian Association is the leading privately
funded nonprofit dedicated to strengthening and deepening relations between the
United States and Australia. The Association builds alliances across the Pacific through its
business, innovation, education, veterans and arts program.

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