Hatched Academy is Ensemble Offspring’s emerging artist development program, providing practical, hands-on experience to a new wave of elite young Australian performers and composers. Emerging is a broad term and defined here as an artist in the early stages of their career or someone who has yet to be significantly recognised.
The program draws on the skills and expertise of our Artistic Director, Claire Edwardes, our core instrumentalists and guest composer mentors from around Australia and the world. It offers invaluable in-roads to the vast and exciting world of new music creation and performance by providing its young participants with the opportunity to gain practical skills and insights in the areas of compositional and performance techniques, artistic planning and programming, production, funding, marketing, audience engagement and important industry contacts.
Hatched Academy consists of three streams in 2021: Hatched Associate Artist (to be carried over from 2020 due to COVID), Hatched Home Academy and Hatched Composer Summer School.
First Nations Composer Program
Ensemble Offspring’s First Nations Composer Program is distinctive in the Australian art music sector. A multi faceted program, it takes an active role in addressing the disparity in opportunities afforded to Australia’s First Nations musicians and artists with, in the words of Christopher Sainsbury a ‘gentle correction’ to past approaches. We recognise the damaging legacy of colonisation and see the immense value that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists can offer the broader arts sector and cultural landscape. In line with our RAP plan, key to our First Nations program is local industry engagement and partnership within the First Nations sphere with First People First as our main priority.
Ensemble Offspring’s First Nations Program comprises:
Ngarra-Burria: First Peoples Composers – Dharug words meaning ‘to hear, to sing’. The program, created by Christopher Sainsbury, builds bridges for First Peoples musicians to step forward, further develop their composition skills, and connect with the sector.
First Nations Composer in Residence – this annual position was launched in 2020 and offers a flexible mentoring and workshopping environment including one-on-one sessions, involvement in local and regional touring programs and premiere of a new commission.
Community Workshops and Festivals – Indigenous community performances, workshops and First Nations cultural practise learning (for Ensemble Offspring) including as part of ‘Baiame’s Ngunnhu Festival’ in Brewarrina, NSW (presented by Moogahlin Performing Arts).
Noisy Women Commission
The Noisy Women Commission is Ensemble Offspring’s annual award for an emerging, female-identifying composer. The competitive commission is open to all Australian female-identifying and non-binary composers who consider themselves emerging.
Inaugurated in 2017, our Noisy Women have gone on to produce a broad array of provocative and thrilling new chamber works. The commission provides significant creative freedom to an emerging Australian composer, and an opportunity for the new work to be workshopped closely with members of Ensemble Offspring and finally presented and documented in a high-profile concert.
The value of the prize is a $3500 commission fee, several workshop sessions with Ensemble Offspring and professional documentation of the premiere. The work should be approximately 10 minutes in length and should be for the core Ensemble Offspring line up of flute, clarinet, percussion, piano, violin and cello, or an agreed subset thereof. Use of electronics and multimedia can be discussed.
Composer & Education Workshops
Ensemble Offspring is dedicated to educating broadly, fostering an understanding of Australian music and introducing innovative Australian music of today to listeners of all ages. We believe it is vital to support musical development from school age all the way through to emerging professional artists. Our composer workshops cater for high school and tertiary students.
Recently we have been involved in MLC’s Australian Music Days, Richard Gill Presents at the City Recital Hall, Santa Sabina’s Australian Composition Seminar as well as many workshops with tertiary students at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, ANU School of Music and WAAPA/University of Western Australia. Upcoming sessions are being planned with composers at Elder Conservatory, University of Tasmania and University of Melbourne. Over the years we have developed several composer kits with the Australian Music Centre and we are also currently developing high school workshops and composer sessions for the NSW curriculum, focusing on Australian music of the past 25 years – our speciality!
Children’s & Family Programs
The benefits of music for cognitive development at all stages of learning are widely proven, and an essential part of our mission is inspiring music makers and music lovers from an early age. Our Children’s and Family Programs incorporate lively concerts (including our annual Sizzle event at local Bowling Clubs), thought-provoking theatre-style shows, podcasts and education kits for early childhood and primary school age listeners. In recent years Ensemble Offspring has collaborated with key partners including the Sydney Opera House and ABC Classic Kids to create and produce several shows and podcasts introducing young ears to the innovative sound worlds of Australia. These include Bilby’s Bluegum Melodies (2017-current), Sounds like Australia (2018), Music for the Dreaming (2018) and Pipe Dreams Green as part of Way out West Festival. (2015)