Freedman Jazz Fellowship and Freedman Classical Fellowship are two prestigious annual fellowships for a classical instrumentalist and a jazz musician, intended to assist them in career building. The awards are in cash and promotion.
The 2016 winner of the Jazz Fellowship is Melbourne drummer James McLean, and the Classical Fellowship has gone to violist Stefanie Farrands, principal of the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra.
The jazz decision was made at the annual Freedman Jazz concert at the Studio of Sydney Opera House on August 1. ABC Jazz collaborated generously by recording, videoing, broadcasting and uploading the performances. It also offers as part of the prize a studio recording. The other two finalists were pianists Joseph O'Connor and Luke Sweeting.
For the first time, the classical Fellow was also finally decided at a concert - hosted by Classic FM at the ABC's Eugene Goossens Hall at ABC HQ in Sydney on September 17 and broadcast nationally. The finalists, in addition to Stefanie, were percussionist Kaylie Melville and pianist Alex Raineri.
The Freedman Fellowships are not for students or emerging artists. The maximum age of candidates is 35 years for jazz and 30 years for classical and they are for artists who are already very well established and at the top of the profession. The Fellowships are intended to assist them in taking their next important career steps.
Artists cannot self-nominate. Distinguished musicians from each Australian state and territory are invited to nominate candidates and the maximum number of candidates for either Fellowship is 17. To be nominated is already an honour.
Candidates apply with a sound recording and a description of a career-advancing project they would undertake with the award funds. Finalists are chosen, interviewed and auditioned by panels of three judges, again drawn from the upper ranks of the profession. The jazz audition takes the form of a concert, Freedman Jazz, held at the Studio of the Sydney Opera house.
|About the freedman music fellowships
The Fellowships for Classical Music and Jazz are funded by the Freedman Foundation and were conceived by Laurence Freedman and Dr Richard Letts AM, director of The Music Trust. The first Fellowships were awarded in 2001. They are managed by The Music Trust and administered by Sydney Improvised Music Association (SIMA).
The Freedman Foundation is a philanthropic foundation chaired by Laurence Freedman, which assists talented young Australians in the arts and supports important medical and scientific research. In 2001, Laurence Freedman was made a Member of the Order of Australia for service to the community, to medical research, the arts, and to business and investment in Australia.
Past winners of the Freedman Jazz Fellowships are a Who’s Who of Australian jazz. They include guitarists Ben Hauptmann and James Muller, saxophonists Julien Wilson, Andrew Robson and Matt Keegan, pianists Andrea Keller, Matt McMahon, Marc Hannaford and Aaron Choulai, trumpeter Phil Slater, bassist Christopher Hale and vocalist Kristin Berardi.
FIND MORE INFORMATION on The Music Trust website