Thursday 11 August 2011: The Music Council of Australia and the Freedman Foundation are delighted to announce Melbourne percussionist Eugene Ughetti as the winner of the 2011 Music Council of Australia /Freedman Fellowship for Classical Music. The Fellowship carries a cash prize of $15,000.
“The Freedman Classical Fellowship finalists together demonstrate such an impressive level of accomplishment for music in Australia. It was gratifying to see how these inspiring musicians looked to the future of their art form,” said Peter Czornyj (Director of Artistic Planning for the Sydney Symphony) on behalf of the judges.
“Eugene Ughetti is a charismatic, virtuosic musician whose performances combine theatricality and musicality. He is making musical opportunities for himself and for other musicians through a very clear, well organised set of activities in Australia and on tour overseas.”
The other two judges for 2011 are also distinguished members of Australia’s classical music community: Gerard Willems (pianist and Associate Professor at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music) and 2007 winner of the Freedman Classical Fellowship, percussionist Timothy Constable (Artistic Director of Synergy Percussion).
Inaugurated in 2001, the Freedman Music Fellowships, administered by the Music Council of Australia, offers a unique opportunity for some of Australia’s most talented classical and jazz musicians to further their careers internationally.
“All the finalists manage to combine a strong connection to Australia with an international view of their music and careers. They all, in their different ways, think about how they are contributing to Australian culture whether through their activities in Australia or by taking Australian compositions and performers onto the international stage,” said Richard Letts, Executive Director of the Music Council of Australia. “The outlook for Australian music is looking bright.”
Melbourne based percussionist Eugene Ughetti instigates arts projects that impact on contemporary culture and presents work that stimulates our consciousness. He is a percussionist, composer, conductor and is currently the artistic director of Speak Percussion. His professional experience is diverse but his particular focus is new chamber music and hybrid-arts collaboration. Eugene has lectured and hosted master classes throughout the world and regularly performs with a variety of artists throughout Europe, Asia, North America and Australia. He has appeared as a soloist with the Melbourne Symphony, the Victorian College of the Arts Orchestras and the Australian Ballet. He has instigated numerous International arts projects, has commissioned over seventy new compositions and over forty new solo and ensemble works. He has worked under many conductors including Lorin Maazel, Pierre Boulez, Valery Gergiev and Jean Deroyer. Eugene’s compositions have been presented by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Australian Ballet, Speak Percussion and JACK Productions. He is currently a sessional staff member at the Victorian College of the Arts and Melbourne Conservatorium of Music (University of Melbourne) and is an academic lecturer at Monash University.
Photograph: Siri Hayes