The winners of the 2020 Sidney Myer Performing Arts Awards have been announced, and among them is Queensland’s own, Metro Arts.
The 2020 Awards have been expanded from the usual three (individual, facilitator and group) to eight Awards (including at least one in each Australian state and territory – three individuals, three groups and two facilitators).
The Awards celebrate excellence in the performing arts and provide direct financial support to artists and companies across the country. In this way, the Awards and the Sidney Myer Fund are very much fundamental to the cultural life of Australia.
Metro Arts join eight others to receive recognition. The venue is at the forefront of the development of independent artists and new contemporary work in Queensland. After 40-years in their old home, they’ve recently relocated into a purpose-built venue in West End.
In the announcement, Andrew Myer AM Chairman spoke of the importance of such an award.
“The pandemic has been devastating for artists and everyone working in arts and culture in Australia. In light of that, the Sidney Myer Fund acted decisively to rethink how we present the Awards. Instead of Awarding the usual three annual prizes – the Group Award, the Individual Award and the Facilitator’s Prize – we elected to support eight prizes of $25,000 across the whole country, to celebrate the winners’ achievements and to recognise the role they play in affirming our country’s sense of self,” stated Myer.
“We know this will make a difference both to individual artists and companies and are delighted that we are able to support Australia’s cultural life at this difficult time for many.”
The award recipients include Metro Arts (Multi-Arts, Qld), Kylie Bracknell (Theatre, WA), Sally Chance (Dance, SA), Second Echo Ensemble (Dance, Tas), Andrew Ford (Music, NSW), Robin Fox (Music, Vic), Sean Pardy (Theatre, NT) and The Street Theatre (Multi-Arts, ACT).
The Trustees of the Sidney Myer Foundation believe that real achievement should be recognised and rewarded. It has awarded over $4 million in the Awards’ 38 years.
The national Awards are determined by a Judging Committee that this year was constituted by Christine Anthoney, Fraser Corfield, Shelagh Magadza, Fiona Maxwell and Brian Ritchie. The Committee is chaired by Andrew Myer, AM (Chairman, Sidney Myer Fund) who does not vote.
The Judging Committee recognises past achievements but also gives consideration to the potential of an individual or group to continue their contribution to Australian society through the performing arts.
The Sidney Myer Performing Arts Awards were established in 1984 by the Trustees of the Sidney Myer Fund to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the death of Sidney Myer, a passionate advocate and great friend to the arts.
Metro Arts are rounding out their January-June program, with shows coming up including Anatomy of a Suicide, Fertile Ground, White Woman and Mad Dance Festival. Their July-December program will be launched in early June.