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​VCAA Bulletin
No. 46 - March 2019
and Awards

Back to VCAA Bulletin No. 46 - March 2019

VCE Season of Excellence

VCE Season of Excellence 2019 begins

The VCE Season of Excellence 2019 has officially begun, with the inaugural Top Talks taking place on Friday 15 February at State Library Victoria. The inspiring sold-out event, showcasing four outstanding VCE Extended Investigation students from 2018, was a fitting way to begin this year's program.

Panel session (L to R) Madison Schenk (Alumnus),
Luca Imerci (Fitzroy High School),
Stephanie Barito (The University High School),
Kailyn O'Connor (Mornington Secondary College),
Ryan Walker (Melbourne High School),
Maxine McKew (MC), Top Talks 2019

The Top Class concert series began on Thursday 21 February with Top Class Dance, celebrating exceptional 2018 VCE and VCE VET Dance student performances.

Top Class Sound was held at its original home, the Iwaki Auditorium at ABC Studios, Southbank. Fourteen students were invited to present their original music compositions to a delighted audience. Each work was composed for various forms and instrumentation, including big band, chamber and jazz.

The Top Class concert series will continue with Top Class Drama and Theatre Studies on Tuesday 12 and Wednesday 13 March, and Top Class Music on Monday 18 and Tuesday 19 March at the Melbourne Recital Centre. The Top Class Music concerts on Tuesday 19 March have sold out and tickets to the concert on Monday 18 March are selling fast.

On Thursday 7 March the short films, documentaries, music videos and animations of talented 2018 VCE Media students will be launched at the highly anticipated Top Screen film festival. During the festival's nine-week run, attendees will have the opportunity to meet up-and-coming filmmakers, listen to industry professionals and participate in talks that explore the process behind each student's work. Top Screen closes on Tuesday 7 May.

Conor Whitty, Kardinia International College, Geelong,
Customisable Glockenspiel Music Box,
Systems Engineering, Top Designs 2019

Melbourne Museum will again be hosting the Top Designs 2019 exhibition, which opens on Saturday 30 March. Top Designs features the diverse work and folios of students who studied VCE Media, Product Design and Technology, Systems Engineering, Theatre Studies and Visual Communication Design, and VCE VET Creative and Digital Media in 2018. School groups will have the opportunity to participate in education programs presented by VCAA representatives and industry guests until Friday 17 May, with the exhibition continuing to Sunday 14 July.

Tarni Jarvis, Ballarat High School, Ballarat,
Parramal puna-punai,
Product Design And Technology,
Top Designs 2019

Top Arts is presented by the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV). The showcase runs from Friday 22 March to Sunday 14 July, and features magnificent works by VCE Art and Studio Arts students. Professional learning opportunities for teachers and folio viewings will be offered in conjunction with the exhibition, which can be booked through the NGV.

The final event in the Season of Excellence program is Top Acts, a stand-alone concert of performances from the Top Class series. Top Acts blends original, contemporary and classical music, dance, drama and theatre studies acts into one spectacular evening. This showcase event will take place on Friday 10 May at the Melbourne Recital Centre.

The Season is a remarkable opportunity for current and future students to gain insights from their peers, and prepare them for artistic and creatively oriented VCE studies. Students who attend the Season gather inspiration for their own work, and learn valuable information from VCE assessors and industry professionals in their field of expertise. For further information on the events being held across the Season, including ticket bookings, visit the VCE Season of Excellence 2019 webpage.

Margaret Schofield Memorial Scholarships

Music Composition scholarship announced

Nathan Zammit performs his composition Life
at the Top Class Sound concert

Nathan Zammit has been awarded the 2019 Margaret Schofield Memorial Scholarship for Composition. The former student of the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School was presented with his scholarship at the Top Class Sound concert on Friday 1 March at the Iwaki Auditorium.

Margaret Schofield's family established the memorial scholarships in 2006 in recognition of Schofield's achievements as a musician and her commitment to music education. The scholarships, awarded annually for Music Composition and Music Performance, each provide $7000 towards the cost of tertiary study in music.

'I feel extremely honoured to be the sole recipient of an award that is selected from many equally deserving entries', says Nathan.

'I am grateful that my musical language has been received by the selection panel. I hope that my compositions will continue to contribute positively to society and that I will find work as a composer.'

At the Top Class Sound concert, Nathan presented his composition Life, based on a short film he created in Year 12. 'The film was a springboard of ideas that inspired my composition, and my composition equally inspired my film,' explains Nathan.

'When I began writing Life, I focused on curating minor-based, soulful harmonic movement through a variety of complimentary instrumental timbres, making for an energetic, and at times sparse and delicate, piece.'

Having played piano since the age of four, Nathan's sights have long been set on becoming a film and television composer. This year, the scholarship will help him to study Interactive Composition at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music.

'The scholarship is paid directly to the University of Melbourne and gives me the financial security of having a significant portion of my first year of university fees paid off. This will allow me to invest in recording equipment and synthesisers, and travel internationally to grow connections to music professionals overseas', says Nathan.

Scholarship trustee Fiona Cochrane
presents Nathan
with the scholarship certificate

The selection panel for the Margaret Schofield Scholarship considers students who will continue their music studies at a tertiary level. Applicants' study scores for VCE Music Style and Composition, VCE Music Investigation, VCE Music Performance and VCE VET Music are also considered.

VCAA Performing Arts Curriculum Manager, Margaret Arnold, said the selection panel was presented with a competitive field but Nathan's passion and dedication was particularly impressive.

'Nathan clearly thrives on writing music for others to play, and shows respect for their contribution to the process as performers,' says Margaret.

'His work demonstrates a mature approach to composition, with his skillful exploration of a variety of musical techniques, including blending traditional instruments with new techniques and technologies.'

The winners of the scholarships for Music Performance will be announced at the Top Class Music concerts on Tuesday 19 March.