The Music Trust in Australia, which recently completed its first full year of activities has a great many more planned in 2015. They are working with energy, imagination and authority as a deep information source with education at the forefront, especially its advocacy for school music.
It has established the beginnings of a very ambitious Music in Australia Knowledge base, that deals systematically with the music of an entire country. It is managing the Freedman Music Fellowships and proposing activities to address needs and opportunities in Australian music and musical life.
They are designing projects that will benefit music education.The inaugural winner of their Research Award is Assoc Prof Anita Collins of the University of Canberra for a study of primary school teachers’ attitudes to teaching music once they had gained an understanding of the neurological benefits. She had concluded ‘children who learn a musical instrument in a disciplined way grow a bigger, better brain’.
In the Primary school arena teachers are not educated to teach music and in the majority of schools in most states, there is not a classroom music program. After decades of neglect, The Music Trust believes that the only – and best – solution is the introduction into every classroom of a specialist music teacher. We certainly support their advocacy here at The Culture Concept Circle.
Director and founder of The Music Trust is Dr Richard Letts AM, who also was Executive Director of the Music Council of Australia. He trained as a classical pianist and composer and worked in the field of jazz. He has played, taught, and administered during his career and now advocates and mentors for the greater good of music in Australia.