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Musica Viva reveals 2020-2021 FutureMakers

Category: Media Releases: Company

Harry Ward (left) and the Partridge String Quartet (right).

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Musica Viva Australia is excited to announce violinist Harry Ward and chamber music ensemble Partridge String Quartet as the third iteration of its acclaimed leadership initiative, FutureMakers.

Launched in 2015, FutureMakers is designed to discover and enable brilliant early career artists to become Australia’s musical leaders of tomorrow. The two-year part-time project offers artists a comprehensive professional development curriculum focused on strengthening their entrepreneurial capabilities, nurturing artistic leadership and shaping the sector’s future.

‘FutureMakers is a bridge between how we think about music today and how we’re likely to program and perform it tomorrow,’ explains Musica Viva’s Artistic Director Paul Kildea. ‘We focus on a handful of young Australian musicians who possess outstanding imagination, creativity, and peer recognition and respect.’

Harry Ward is an accomplished violinist, already in demand as a soloist, concertmaster and chamber musician for performances in Australia and internationally. A winner of the Australian National Youth Concerto Competition, Harry has also won the award for the Best Performance of Commissioned Work at the Michael Hill International Violin Competition and has been a finalist in the ABC Young Performer Awards.

‘This incredibly dynamic program will not only afford me opportunities to be mentored by and work with some of today’s most inspiring artists but will also allow me to further develop and explore my own artistic endeavours,’ says Harry.  

Melbourne-based ensemble Partridge String Quartet have also enjoyed their share of successes, winning first prize at the Queensland International Chamber Music Competition in 2019. In 2018 they were selected as one of ten string quartets world-wide for a three-week residency at the prestigious Banff Centre of Arts and Creativity in Canada.

Quartet members William Huxtable (violin), Mana Ohashi (violin), Eunise Cheng (viola) and Daniel Smith (cello) would also be familiar to Australian audiences, appearing at the Musica Viva Festival (AYO Chamber Players 2019), Port Fairy Spring Music Festival (2019) and inaugural Bendigo Chamber Music Festival (2020).

‘It is an honour for us to be part of this organisation as Musica Viva’s next FutureMakers,’ say the quartet. ‘We are incredibly excited to take the next step in pursuing our dreams of sharing our collective passion for chamber music with the world.’

‘We can’t wait to give back to the community, and surprise and connect with audiences along the way.’

All artists will participate in a series of ‘intensives’ across the two-year program, receiving strategic mentoring from leading artists, directors, consultants and representatives from a diverse array of artistic and professional sectors.

The artists’ involvement in FutureMakers represents a long-term commitment to them by Musica Viva, beyond the scope of their initial two-year program.

‘Alongside mentoring and a platform for new work and thinking, Musica Viva is committed to an ongoing relationship with our chosen musicians, as current and future projects with all our past participants attests,’ concludes Paul Kildea.

Previous participants in the FutureMakers include pianist Aura Go (2018-2019), percussionist Matthias Schack-Arnott (2018-2019) and wind ensemble Arcadia Winds (2015-2017). Arcadia Winds are one of Australia’s most in-demand chamber ensembles and during their tenure commissioned, recorded and released an EP in partnership with ABC Classics and Musica Viva. Aura Go and Matthias Schack-Arnott both developed and premiered ambitious new music-based performance projects for further touring and festival engagement.

Lead funding for FutureMakers is provided by the Berg Family Foundation.

Media enquiries: Adele Schonhardt, Media & Public Affairs Manager, Musica Viva Australia
M: 0457 727 379 | E: [email protected]