Sixteen young musicians applied for Australia's Freedman Classical Fellowship this year by submitting a performance recording and a description of the project they would carry out if they received the funding.
The four finalists are:
Double bassist Will Hansen (New South Wales)
Violist Molly Collier-O’Boyle (Victoria)
Violinist Kyla Matsuura-Miller (Victoria)
Flautist Eliza Shephard (Victoria)
This year's judging panel consists of ABC broadcaster Penny Lomax, pianist and Classical FM presenter Tamara-Anna Cislowska, and violinist Véronique Serret. The three will select the winner following a concert at the Sydney Opera House on November 19, assuming that interstate travel restrictions will allow all finalists to attend.
"We all agreed it is inspiring to see such creatively diverse and ambitious projects, particularly as they were derived during the enormous difficulties posed by the COVD-19 pandemic," said Penny Lomax, ABC broadcaster and member of the judging panel. "This has not appeared to dim the resourcefulness and originality of the participants. With this generation, Australia’s musical future is in great hands!”
“Once again, the Freedman finalists look more to the future of classical music than its past,” said Dr Richard Letts of the Music Trust, which manages the Freedman Classical Fellowship. “It’s not a requirement for this award, although we do encourage the candidates in a general way to be imaginative. But there are less risky paths for the imagination than commissioning new works for your live instrument and electronics, for instance. That’s not something you hear very much in Hamer Hall or the Sydney Opera House.”