17 Mar 2011
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The Professional Development Awards (PDAs) are a permanent fixture on the APRA cultural calendar. From the beginning the awards have been met with such enormous enthusiasm and interest that APRA now offer eleven PDAs across New Zealand and Australia to promising music writers and composers.
APRA NZ presents the PDAs biennially recognising excellence in three compositional genres: Classical, Pop Contemporary and Film & TV. The recipients each receive $12,000 cash to achieve their professional development and advance their careers.
“It’s a pleasure to encourage our writers to make bold and exciting plans and then invest in making those plans happen”, says APRA’s Director of NZ Operations, Anthony Healey.
The assessment of each PDA submission is completed by an independent committee, who were again impressed by the high level of the applicants this year.
“Each of the recipients is uniquely talented, and has immense potential for the future,” says Anthony Healey. “We look forward to seeing this potential develop.”
APRA NZ congratulates its 2011 Professional Development Award winners:
Stephen Gallagher (Film & TV), Miriam Clancy (Pop/Contemporary) and Simon Eastwood (Classical).
"... Simon is a gifted composer. Completing the programme at the Academy is the perfect environment for Simon to hone his craft and to develop his future career as a composer...”
Simon is a composer and bass player from Wellington. He picked up the double bass in his last year of high school, initially as an extension to playing bass guitar in rock and jazz bands. Three months after he first received lessons in classical bass from NZSO sub-principal Vicki Jones he was accepted into the performance programme at Victoria University. He went on to complete a Bmus in Performance Double Bass and Composition in 2006, and then a Bmus with first class honours in Composition in the following year. Simon has had compositions performed by a range of well known performers, including Dutch percussionist Arnold Marinissen and the New Zealand String Quartet, and has won numerous awards for composition. Simon will utilise the PDA support to finish his master’s programme at the Royal Academy of Music in London. This programme provides numerous collaborative projects and opportunities, as well as local and international commissions. The Academy is widely regarded as one of the best specialist institutions in the UK, with many graduates continuing to become very important composers of the future.