The 50 finalists for the 2021 APRA Professional Development Awards have been announced, showcasing a broad range of Australian songwriting and composing talent across the categories of Popular Contemporary, Hip Hop/Rap/Soul/R&B, Classical/Experimental, Jazz & Improvised Music, Film & Television, Country/Americana, Dance/Electronic and Music Theatre.
The APRA Professional Development Awards exist to provide support to emerging songwriters and composers, with nine recipients each receiving a $10,000 cash prize to support their development, along with a prize from Australis Music.
Vying for the prize in the Country/Americana category is 2019 Toyota Star Maker Blake O’Connor, Casey Barnes, the Queen of Boomtown Gretta Ziller, Melanie Dyer and Sarah Buckley from the Byron Bay sibling-trio The Buckleys.
The Smugglers of Light Foundation Music and Media Award also returns in 2021 to provide an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander music or media practitioner with a grant of $10,000, as well as a prize from Australis Music. The award is supported and assessed by the Smugglers of Light Foundation, set up in memory of Eli Westlake, who was tragically killed in 2008 at the age of 21.
The winners of the APRA Professional Development Awards and the Smugglers of Light Foundation Music and Media Award will be announced on Thursday 24 June 2021.
For more information or a complete list of finalists can be seen here.
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