Honour Board

VENUE AWARDS

Music Victoria Awards

2021

Best Large Venue: Elisabeth Murdoch Hall

The Music Victoria Awards (previously known as The Age Music Victoria Awards) are an annual Awards program celebrating Victorian musicians, venues and festivals.

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COMMISSION AWARDS

Merlyn Myer Music Commission Award

The Merlyn Myer Music Commission was established in memory of Dame Merlyn Myer (1900-1982), founded to support one female composer in Australia biennially. The award enables an Australian female composer to create a new musical work of significant creative freedom, to foster her artistic development and provide an opportunity for her new work to be performed, heard and recorded in an outstanding performance setting.

The Merlyn Myer Music Commission is funded by The Aranday Foundation and The Yulgilbar Foundation.

2021

Nat Bartsch – premiered by Nat Bartsch & Inventi Ensemble

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2019

Deborah Cheetham AOSong for Dulka Warngiid premiered by Deborah Cheetham & Syzygy Ensemble

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2017

Andrea KellerLove in Solitude premiered by Ensemble Offspring premiered by Ensemble Offspring

2015

Sally Greenaway7 Great Inventions of the Modern Industrial Age premiered by Anni Ha & Syzygy Ensemble

Melbourne Recital Centre & Melbourne Conservatorium of Music Composition Award

This composition award is awarded annually to two promising and committed current students or recent graduates of composition study at Melbourne Conservatorium of Music. The award grants the opportunity to write a work for a local chamber music ensemble and have it premiered at Melbourne Recital Centre. The award includes tailored support in matching with an ensemble, tickets to a selection of concerts, a cash fee, tickets to the premiere performance and an archival recording.

The Melbourne Recital Centre/Melbourne Conservatorium of Music Composition Award was made possible from 2016 – 2019 with the support Majlis Pty Ltd, and from 2020 with the support of Ms Jane Kunstler.

2022

Chris Pickering
Irene Zhong
Zinia Chan – Weaving of Threads premiered by Syzygy Ensemble

2021

Darrin Archer – Peace, Gratitude, Resolve premiered by Affinity Quartet
Jakob Bragg – Displaced bodies, weapons of action premiered by Rubiks Collective & Ossicle Duo

2020

Julia Potter – Belonging and Longing to Be premiered by Georgie Darvidis & Penny Quartet

2019

Carolyn Schofield – Residue of Structure premiered by Carolyn Schofield & Horsley Williams Duo
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Samuel Smith – Dark Colours premiered by Arcadia Winds
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2018

Andrew Batterham – Urban Songs premiered by Letter String Quartet
Jorden Heys – Ego Folium premiered by Latitude 37 Click here to view

2017

Alice Humphries – Nautical Twilight premiered by Letter String Quartet
Samantha Wolf – There is only now premiered by Ensemble Liaison

2016

May Lyon – Ode to Damascus premiered by Syzygy Ensemble
Ade VincentComposition for Voice & String Quartet premiered by Lior & Tinalley String Quartet

2015

Tom Henry – Scenes from a Poet’s Life premiered by Flinders Quartet
Mark Viggiani – Cleopatra premiered by Greta Bradman & Ensemble Liaison
Matthew WestwoodUntitled premiered by Marya Martin (flute), Wilma Smith (violin), Alvin Wong (cello) & Donald Nicolson (harpsichord)

2014

Elliott Hughes – Arcs and Sevens premiered by Syzygy Ensemble

Betty Amsden Kids & Families Commission

The Betty Amsden Kids & Families Commission was created to celebrate the generous gift of Betty Amsden to support Kids & Families programming at Melbourne Recital Centre. The commission opportunity supports significant creative opportunity for Victorian-based artists and companies to create a new project, commission, idea or extravaganza, especially focused on kids and families, annually since 2020.

The Betty Amsden Kids & Families Commission is made possible by Betty’s generous bequest to the Centre.

2021

Polyglot TheatreAnts

2020

Federation HandbellsThe Wonderland

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PERFORMANCE AWARDS

Helpmann Awards

The annual Helpmann Awards recognise distinguished artistic achievement and excellence in the many disciplines of Australia’s vibrant live performance sectors including musicals, contemporary music, comedy, opera and classical music, theatre, ballet, dance and physical theatre, presentations for children and young people, regional touring and cabaret.

The Helpmann Awards, named in honour of Sir Robert Helpmann, were established in 2001 by Live Performance Australia (LPA) to recognise, celebrate and promote our live performance industry. The Helpmann Awards are Australia’s equivalent of the Tony Awards on Broadway and the Olivier Awards in London.

2019
Best Chamber and/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert:

  • Gabrieli Consort & Players – Purcell’s King Arthur presented by Melbourne Recital Centre and State Opera of South Australia (winner)

2018
Best Chamber and/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert:

  • Pieter Wispelwey: Beethoven, Bach, Brahms with Caroline Almonte presented by Melbourne Recital Centre (nominee)
  • Jordi Savall with Hesperion XXI & Tembembe Ensamble Continuo presented by Perth Festival, Sydney Opera House, Melbourne Recital Centre & Queensland Performing Arts Centre (winner)

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Best Individual Classical Music Performance:

  • Pieter Wispelwey plays the Bach Cello Suites presented by Melbourne Recital Centre (nominee)

2017
Best Chamber and/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert:

  • Academy of St Martin in the Fields presented by Melbourne Recital Centre, Sydney Opera House and QPAC (winner)

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Best Individual Classical Performance:

  • Joshua Bell, Academy of St Martin in the Fields, presented by Melbourne Recital Centre, Sydney Opera House and QPAC (winner)

2016
Best Australian Contemporary Concert:

  • A State of Grace: The Music of Tim and Jeff Buckley presented by Gaynor Crawford Presents, Kirsten Siddle and Century Venues, Melbourne Recital Centre, QPAC, Brisbane Festival and Canberra Theatre Centre (nominee)

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Best Individual Classical Performance:

  • Pierre-Laurent Aimard presented by Melbourne Recital Centre and Sydney Symphony Orchestra (winner)
  • Florian Boesch and Malcolm Martineau presented by Melbourne Recital Centre and Sydney Opera House (nominee)

2015
Best Chamber and/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert:

  • Les Arts Florissants and Le Jardin des Voix in ‘Un jardin à l’italienne’presented by Melbourne Recital Centre, Sydney Opera House and Perth International Arts Festival (winner)
  • The Sixteen presented by Melbourne Recital Centre, Sydney Opera House, Perth International Arts Festival, Queensland Performing Arts Centre and Australian National University School of Music, Llewellyn Hall (nominee)

Best Individual Classical Performance:

  • William Christie presented by Melbourne Recital Centre, Sydney Opera House and Perth International Arts Festival (winner)
  • Christian Tetzlaff presented by Melbourne Recital Centre (nominee)

2014
Best Chamber and/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert:

  • The Jerusalem Project presented by Melbourne Recital Centre and Sydney Opera House (winner)
  • Murray Perahia in Recital presented by Melbourne Recital Centre and Sydney Symphony Orchestra (nominee)

Best Individual Classical Performance:

  • Murray Perahia presented by Melbourne Recital Centre and Sydney Symphony Orchestra (nominee)

2013
Best Chamber and/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert:

  • Jordi Savall & Andrew Lawrence-King presented by Melbourne Recital Centre (winner)

Best Individual Classical Performance:

  • Jordi Savall & Andrew Lawrence-King presented by Melbourne Recital Centre (nominee)

2012
Best Chamber and/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert:

  • Black Angels presented by Melbourne Recital Centre & Syzygy Ensemble (nominee)
  • KURSK: An Oratorio Requiem presented by Melbourne Festival and Melbourne Recital Centre (nominee)

Best Individual Classical Performance:

  • Matthias Goerne, Die Winterreise, presented by Melbourne Recital Centre (nominee)
  • Susan Graham presented by Melbourne Recital Centre & Sydney Opera House (nominee)

2011
Best Chamber and/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert:

  • Scharoun Ensemble Berlin presented by Melbourne Recital Centre (nominee)

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2010
Best Chamber and/or Instrumental Ensemble Concert:

  • Les Voix Humaines presented by Melbourne Recital Centre (nominee)

Best Individual Classical Music Performance:

  • Imogen Cooper presented by Melbourne Recital Centre (winner)

Contemporary Masters Award

The Contemporary Masters Award saw Melbourne Recital Centre recognise the finest performances of repertoire from the 20th and 21st centuries on its stages. It was open to selected ensembles who performed at Melbourne Recital Centre throughout the year.

The award was supported by pianist Stephen McIntyre AM and friends who established the award in honour of Stephen’s birthday.

2019

Ossicle Duo – L’art Bruit by Mauricio Kagel

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Penny Quartet – String Quartet No.2 “Chorale Quartet” by Jörg Widmann

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2018

Inventi Ensemble – Run Before Lightning by Jonathan Harvey

Penny Quartet – String Quartet No.4 by Jörg Widmann

2017

Ensemble Three – Voodoo Sonnets by James Ledger
Songmakers Australia – From Jewish Poetry Op.79 by Dimitri Shostakovich

2016

Melbourne Guitar Quartet – Electric Counterpoint by Steve Reich
Tinalley String Quartet – Song Cycle: ‘Do not go gentle into that good night’ & ‘Do not Go’ by Ade Vincent & Lior

2015

Press, Play – Sandakan Piano Trio 2 by Larry Sitsky
Melbourne Guitar Quartet – News from Nowhere by Philip Houghton

2014

Plexus – The End of Many Worlds by Gordon Kerry
Syzygy Ensemble – Kukulkan 2 by David Dzubay

2013

Benaud Trio – Four Music Videos by Paul Schoenfield
Australia Felix – Funf Bruchstucke by Jörg Widmann

Percy Grainger Award

Launched in 2021, in the name of pioneering Australian composer Percy Grainger (1882-1961), Melbourne Recital Centre’s Percy Grainger Award recognises the finest performances of repertoire by Australian composers performed by selected co-presenting ensembles at Melbourne Recital Centre. A panel of internal and external music industry professionals award two cash prizes per year.

The Percy Grainger Award prize money is supported by the Performer Support Fund.

2021

COMPETITIONS

Bach Competition

As part of our Exceptional Young Artists program, the Centre offers a range of opportunities to support and inspire the next generation of talented musicians, including annual competitions that showcase tomorrow’s music leaders on the Elisabeth Murdoch Hall stage.

For gifted musicians under the age of 18, the Bach Competition encourages young performers to master J.S. Bach repertoire in order to impress audiences and take home the Richard Mills Prize. A competition that dates back to the year Melbourne Recital Centre opened, this event is supported by Richard Mills AM, Martine Letts, Vivienne Ritchie AM and Maria Johnson on behalf of the Late Harry Johnson.

2020

Richard Mills Prize: Leon Fei, violin
Encouragement Award: Lieun Park, cello
Encouragement Award: Meng Xia, piano
Young Bach Scholar: Noah Lawrence, cello

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2019
Richard Mills Prize: Dindin Wang, violin
Encouragement Award: Ji Woo Yoon, cello
Encouragement Award: Leanne McGowan, violin
Young Bach Scholar: Meng Xia, piano

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2018

Richard Mills Prize: Dandan Wang, violin
Encouragement Award: Dindin Wang, violin
Encouragement Award: Zhihan Wang, piano
Young Bach Scholar: Marcus Michelsen, violin
Newsboys Award: Patricia Thompson, trumpet

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2017

Richard Mills Prize: Grace Wu, violin
Encouragement Award: Dindin Wang, violin
Encouragement Award: Henry Say, cello
Aus Bach Society Award: Dandan Wang, violin
Newsboys Award: Emma Amery, violin

2016

Richard Mills Prize: Felix Star Higson-McBrearty, cello
Encouragement Award: Ally Cho, violin
Encouragement Award: Tian Tian Lan, piano
Aus Bach Society Award: Dindin Wang, violin
Newsboys Award: Lily McCann, violin

2015

Richard Mills Prize: Joint Winners – Lily Higson-Spence, violin & Miles Johnston, guitar
Encouragement Award: Felix Star Higson McBrearty, cello
Newsboys Award: Charlotte Kube, cello

2014

Richard Mills Prize: Charlotte Miles, cello
Encouragement Award: Tian Tian Lan, piano
Encouragement Award: Miles Johnston, classical guitar

2013

Richard Mills Prize: Oscar Jiang, piano
Encouragement Award: Charlotte Miles, cello
Encouragement Award: Ziggy Johnston, guitar

2012

Richard Mills Prize: William Soo, piano
Encouragement Award: Oscar Jiang, piano
Encouragement Award: Andrew Kawai, oboe

2011

Richard Mills Prize: Michael Byrne, piano
Encouragement Award; Justine Ayres, violin
Encouragement Award: Emily Sheppard, violin

2010

Richard Mills Prize: Joint Winners – David Wang, piano & Michael Li, piano
Encouragement Award: Isabella Delaney, recorder

Great Romantics Competition

Providing a platform for emerging artists between 18-25 years across Australia, these young musicians have the opportunity to woo audiences with the works of Romantic composers such as Brahms, Liszt and Schumann. With the chance to win a combination of cash and performance opportunities, the Great Romantics Competition is supported by Annamila Pty Ltd, Mrs Margaret S. Ross AM & Dr Ian C Ross, and is a proud partner of the Peninsula Summer Music Festival.

2020

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: Brian Luo, piano
Anne Kantor Encouragement Award: Ji Woo Yoon, cello
Milan Kantor Encouragement Award: Calvin Abdiel, piano

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2019

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: Carol Wang, bassoon
Anne Kantor Encouragement Award: Hannah Shin, piano
Milan Kantor Encouragement Award: Edward Wang, oboe

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2018

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: Miles Johnston, guitar
Kantor Encouragement Award: Jessica Taylor, voice & George Carolin-Unkovich, piano

2017

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: Kyla Matsuura-Miller, violin & Adam McMillan, piano
Kantor Encouragement Award: William Soo, piano

2016

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: Kevin Suherman, piano
Kantor Encouragement Award: Ziggy Johnston, guitar

2015

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: Aaron Liu, piano
Kantor Encouragement Award: Ziggy Johnston, guitar

2014

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: Markiyan Melnychenko, violin
Kantor Encouragement Award: Aaron Liu, piano

2013

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: Tony Lee, piano
Kantor Encouragement Award: Lotte Betts-Dean, soprano

2012

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: James Guan, piano
Kantor Encouragement Award: Nathan Lay baritone, Daniel Carter piano

2011

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: David Soo, piano
Kantor Encouragement Award: William Hewer, cello

2010

Elisabeth Murdoch Prize: Hoang Pham, piano
Kantor Encouragement Award: Nicholas Jones, tenor