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Shaping the future of Australian music

Arcadia Winds performing at Ukaria Cultural Centre. Image courtesy of Dylan Henderson.


Talent, perseverance and a healthy dollop of good luck go into the making of the musicians who perform for Musica Viva. But what about life and leadership beyond the concert stage? That’s the question asked – and answered – by Musica Viva’s FutureMakers program.

Supported through the lead generosity of the Berg Family Foundation and partners including UKARIA and commissioning group The Silo Collective, the FutureMakers program seeks to provide Australia’s top young musicians with the skills to lead their colleagues, audiences and the nation’s cultural life in the 21st century.

The members of woodwind quintet Arcadia Winds have been the inaugural participants in 2015-17. Guided by FutureMakers Artistic Director Genevieve Lacey, they have received extraordinary opportunities, including strategic sessions with lead mentor Lynette Nixon (Head of PwC’s Design for People program), leadership seminars with Chris Kotur (facilitator for two Royal Commissions) and stagecraft workshops with Naomi Edwards (Artistic Director, Patch Theatre). They have written their own business plan and worked with a design company on their brand and logo.

Genevieve Lacey is passionate about the importance of FutureMakers. “We are trying, literally, to make a future for the young musicians we work with, for Musica Viva, for audiences and for the artform itself.”

Flautist Kiran Phatak captures what the initiative seeks to offer its handpicked participants: “It’s really thinking outside the box in terms of creating opportunities for yourself in every way that you can possibly imagine.”

This thinking has seen Arcadia Winds develop projects with Circus Oz and singer-songwriter Bertie Blackman. They’ve toured China and broadcast for BBC Proms alongside BBC New Generation Artists. They were a hit at the 2017 Musica Viva Festival and have also appeared at the Adelaide and Perth International Festivals with Israeli conductor Ilan Volkov and the Australian String Quartet. Three members have created a Musica Viva In Schools program, and the group’s first CD, which includes works composed especially for them, will be released in late August.

Arcadia Winds have become a firm favourite both here and abroad. As one fan commented, “Their ensemble work was outstanding, beautiful tones, lovely blending – and quite a bit of humour! I'm sure that they will lead us beautifully into the next decade of music in this country.”

Musica Viva is committed to nurturing the next generation of Australian musical leaders. We invite you join us.

From contributing to a giving circle to hosting a private performance, there are many ways to become involved.

To learn more, please visit Futuremakers or contact Amelia Morgan-Hunn on (02) 8394 6616.