ANU welcomes boost to dynamic music and visual arts programs

9 February 2018

The ANU has welcomed an announcement from the ACT Government of a new three-year funding agreement for the ANU Community Outreach Program providing new dynamic music and visual arts programs for the whole community to enjoy. 

"The Community Outreach Program for 2018 has a range of new and dynamic programs that are in line with the ACT Arts Policy and provide significant opportunities for all members of the Canberra community to engage with the School of Music and the ANU School of Art and Design," said Minister for the Arts, Gordon Ramsay.

"We want to ensure that the programs delivered through the ANU Community Outreach Program can enrich the lives of people in the broader community, allowing even more Canberrans to participate in music and visual arts development opportunities, including people experiencing disadvantage."

The new funding agreement, worth $1.27m in total over the next three years, will feature a range of initiatives at the ANU School of Art and Design, such as Jack and Punties - glassblowing for people who come from disadvantaged backgrounds; and Bundian Way - an arts program for people of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds; as well as Professional Development programs for graduating ANU students. 

The new range of programs was developed by ANU to better align to the ACT Arts Policy which has a focus on development of, and participation in arts, with access opportunities for all members of the community, not only students.

"The ACT Government has a strong commitment to the ANU including through its funding agreement with the ANU School of Music and School of Art and Design to deliver the Community Outreach Program. We are confident that the new Community Outreach Program will provide a great way for people across the whole community to access music and visual arts programs," Minister Ramsay said.

Funding will also support new programs at the ANU School of Music including Girls Rock - a rock music program for young girls; Girls Jazz which caters to both women and younger girls; Community School of Rock which is designed for all members of the community; Developing Musicians Program for Year 7 to Year 12 students and My Song - a mentorship program for Aboriginal Youth.

Head of the School of Music Professor Ken Lampl said he was delighted with the new funding agreement.

"This new funding announcement reaffirms the confidence the ACT Government and Canberra community have in the ANU School of Music," Professor Lampl said.

"We're looking forward to delivering these exciting new programs which will continue to help the School of Music grow from strength to strength."

Head of the ANU School of Art and Design, Professor Denise Ferris, said the funding would strengthen community ties with the excellence at the ANU Glass Workshop and with the School's collaboration with Indigenous Australians.

"We're delighted to be working with the ACT Government to further involve the community in areas where the School of Art and Design excels, particularly in the teamwork of our Glass Workshop, and our deep and long-standing connections with Indigenous Australia," Professor Ferris said.

While the Government has agreed to fund these new initiatives, the Music For College's Program for Year 11 and Year 12 students will be transitioned off funding after 2019 and the Music Engagement Program for Year 1 to Year 6 students will no longer be funded.

"I appreciate that ceasing some programs will be disappointing to some members of the community but we have been working closely with the ANU to assist with transition arrangements to the new music and visual arts programs," Minister Ramsay said.

"There are a number of other funded music programs which Canberra students can continue access including the Developing Musicians Program, which is part of the ANU Community Outreach Program, and Music For Canberra based at the Ainslie Arts Centre, as well as programs offered through schools.

"The ACT Government has supported the School of Music and School of Art and Design for more than 25 years and we will continue to do so into the future. These schools are an essential part of the fabric of Canberra and important institutions in our city's arts landscape."

Other Community Outreach Programs will be delivered by the Belconnen and Tuggeranong Arts Centres, the Canberra Symphony Orchestra, and access to the ANU Llewellyn Hall for local music organisations.