2020 Art Music Awards virtual event announced

Thursday, 30 Jul 2020

Watch the Virtual Awards on Tuesday 8 September

APRA AMCOS and the Australian Music Centre (AMC) are proud to announce this year’s ART MUSIC AWARDS, a virtual event, streamed online to an audience worldwide on Tuesday 8 September. This annual celebration of Australia’s contemporary classical, jazz and improvised and experimental music and sound art will feature socially distanced performances from some of Australia’s finest talents, curated by the multi award-winning composer and pianist Barney McAll. An exciting team of co-hosts for the evening, as well as details of the full performance program, will be announced in the coming weeks.

"2020 has brought so much grief. Many of the world's preoccupations are proving empty. We can take solace in the truthfulness of our art music, a music that has always reflected a battle for awareness and manifested a force for transformation and renewal. Massive change has now become imperative to our survival as a species. I am honoured to be part of a musical culture that can only become increasingly important as so much emptiness is spotlighted and amended," says Barney McAll. 

In coming years, these 2020 Awards may be regarded as a watershed. We’re witnessing a profound shift in the way we think of live music - from intimate concerts, sound art and jazz gigs to large-scale events pulling audiences in their thousands. As we keenly await the return of live performances, musicians and listeners meeting in the same acoustic space, our annual celebration takes on a greater significance. The virtual nature of this year’s Awards allows us to invite the participation of a growing community of musicians and music lovers.

In 2020, we are celebrating our 10th Art Music Awards in its current format, and we’re excited to usher in new and reworked categories, making this the most comprehensive and inclusive Awards event in our history. Awards will be presented in 13 national categories, along with Luminary Awards for each Australian state or territory, to honour individuals and organisations who have impacted their communities over a sustained period. The reworked categories have been introduced to meet the needs of and acknowledge the ever-evolving art music sector. The ceremony will also honour the recipient of the Richard Gill Award for Distinguished Services to Australian Music. 

The finalists for the 2020 Art Music Awards will be announced on Tuesday 11 August.


  • Work of the Year: Choral
  • Work of the Year: Large Ensemble
  • Work of the Year: Dramatic
  • Work of the Year: Electroacoustic / Sound Art
  • Work of the Year: Jazz
  • Work of the Year: Chamber Music
  • Performance of the Year: Notated Composition
  • Performance of the Year: Jazz / Improvised Music 
  • Award for Excellence in Music Education
  • Award for Excellence in a Regional Area
  • Award for Excellence in Experimental Music
  • Luminary Award – Individual (National)
  • Luminary Award – Organisation (National)
  • Luminary Awards – State/Territory Awards
  • Richard Gill Award for Distinguished Services to Australian Music*

* as determined by the APRA Board of Directors

Tuesday 8 September at 7pm AEST – streaming live on YouTube

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