Adelaide Wind Orchestra

Community Arts & Cultural Development

AWO Composer Prize and Concert

The vibrant Australian symphonic wind community leads the way for commissioning and performing new large ensemble works by Australians. Be a part of AWO’s ongoing mission to support Australian music.

Days Left

A key tenet of Adelaide Wind Orchestra’s mission is to perform new music by Australian composers. Since founding in 2012, we have performed many Australian works and a significant number of world and Australian premieres, but it is long overdue that we collaborate at the grassroots with Australian composers.

The intention of this project is to encourage emerging Australian composers in the early stages of their composition career to write for this medium that we love and provide them with ongoing performance opportunities. This project will fund an ongoing Adelaide Wind Orchestra composition prize, starting in August – October 2019; and will support the performance opportunities of these new Australian works. In 2019, the winner of the prize will have their work performed as part of the Australian Stories concert in November.

The vibrant Australian symphonic wind community leads the way for commissioning and performing new large ensemble works by Australians. Unfortunately, this community does not have substantial public funding available and this means that funded composition opportunities are rare for Australian composers and are highly competitive. Additionally, existing funded opportunities are not always linked to performances and very few are for large ensembles.

By contrast, Adelaide Wind Orchestra and the symphonic wind community in Australia has a history of supporting Australian composers. We, alone, have been a part of 11 commissions for Australian composers and provided performances of all these works. As a community, we have the desire and energy to support Australian composers but do not have the funding and administrative support of the larger arts organisations. We need your help to be a part of a grassroots effort to support the development of an Australian symphonic repertoire

Donations will fund the creation of an ongoing monetary prize for the Adelaide Wind Orchestra Composition Workshop as well as going toward the administrative and other associated costs with running the workshop and Australian Stories concert in 2019. In 2019, we will run the inaugural Adelaide Wind Orchestra Composition Prize, provide mentoring to emerging composers and provide a funded prize for the winner of the workshop. All three short-listed composers will have their work performed privately in a series of rehearsals, and the winning composer will have their work performed at the final Adelaide Wind Orchestra concert of 2019, Australian Stories, alongside leading Australian composers Ross Edwards, Melody Eotvos, Kirsten Milenko, and Percy Grainger.

You can find out more information about this project and Adelaide Wind Orchestra at
We would love to meet and talk to you about this and we encourage you to get in touch with the orchestra at if you have any questions about our project.

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Adelaide Wind Orchestra is one of Australia’s leading wind ensembles, founded in 2012 with clearly stated objectives of performing and developing high quality wind ensemble music for Australia of great artistic merit.

Founded by graduates of the Elder Conservatorium and with renowned clarinetist Peter Handsworth as our director, we aim to develop this genre of contemporary art music in Australia along the lines of other groups around the world (Netherlands Blazer Ensemble, Tokyo Kosei Wind Orchestra, Dallas Wind Symphony, and more) whilst battling the stigma attached to massed wind ensembles.

Since 2012, we have presented 8 major Australian Premieres by Pulitzer Prize winning composers, and 3 World Premieres by local Australians, with many more planned in the future. Generally all of the works for this genre are rarely performed in Australia so most of our 20 concerts since inauguration have been local premieres for South Australia.


Shirin Lim


Caroline Coulter


Andrew Georg


Karin Janezic


Micheala Becker


G Grey & S.J Nielsen



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