ISCM

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2017_ISCM - AUSTRALIAN SECTION 

 
 

Annual Report

  • Year: 
  • Please describe your organization’s activities over the past year, including concerts, commissions, collaborations, publications: 

    AUSTRALIAN MUSIC CENTRE
    2017 Annual Report

    1. INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND

    1.1 THE AMC AND ITS ROLE
    The AMC’s 2016-2020 Strategic Plan describes the organisation’s mission “to represent
    Australian art music through our online services, enabling universal access to our resources,
    whilst advancing the interests of Australian creators and their music.
    Our organisation’s values include excellence; authority; leadership; legacy; generosity; and
    collaboration. These values inform and shape our role as a service organisation, and a
    touchstone for how we conduct the many relationships that we have across the sector, with
    our constituents, and beyond.
    The AMC maintains the largest, most comprehensive single collection of materials and
    information relating to Australian art music creators and performers, covering the spectrum
    of contemporary classical music, improvised jazz, experimental music and sound art.
    Our services include:
    - Publishing services for composers and other content providers;
    - Distribution and retail services for artists, music publishers, and record labels;
    - Education services for Australian teachers and students;
    - Project management: of artist development projects, promotion projects (such as the Art
    Music Awards), and production projects (education resources, books, and recordings);
    and,
    - Promotion and advocacy, for artists and their work, and for the sector.

    1.2 2017 OVERVIEW AND KEY ACHIEVEMENTS
    2017 presented another busy year for the AMC, with a diverse range of activities undertaken
    alongside the ongoing business activities on our online presence, serving our diverse
    audiences.
    Key achievements in 2017 include:
     Significant increase in sales activity, achieving a 39% increase in sales income on the
    previous year.
     Undertaking a busy schedule of promotion and artist development projects, including
    the delivery of another successful Art Music Awards in partnership with APRA AMCOS;
    celebrating the success of the inaugural Indigenous Composer Initiative as part of our
    AMPlify artist development projects.
     Increased international activity: continuing our collaboration with Sounds Australia in
    hosting Australian delegates at Jazzahead in Bremmen, and Classical:NEXT in
    Rotterdam; establishing a close relationship with the European Jazz Network (EJN),
    and becoming a member of this important network; and ongoing involvement and
    presence in the International Society for Contemporary Music (ISCM) and the
    International Association of Music Information Centres (IAMIC).
    Details of these achievements, and all AMC activities in 2017, are outlined below.

    2. REPORT ON 2017 ACTIVITIES
    In 2017 the AMC’s operations continued to divide across 4 sectors: Documentation, including
    the library collection, and education services; Transactions, including wholesale and retail
    services, facsimile score production, and membership services; Marketing, including
    communications, and marketing and promotional activities; and Finance and Administration,
    including governance, and technology systems. Various project activities occur across these
    sectors.
    The details below show comparative figures from previous years, which have been included
    to show trends.

    2.1 DOCUMENTATION
    2.1.1 Overview
    The AMC collection includes: scores, recordings, books, biographical and analytic materials, in
    hardcopy and digital formats.
    In addition to the extensive information and content presented on the AMC website, the
    AMC continues to provide its various services such as the information / reference service
    available via toll-free telephone, emails, and online. This provides access for students,
    teachers, researchers, broadcasters, composers and performers, other libraries and the
    general public. AMC Members borrow library materials for perusal or study through the
    library loans service, either physical loans of recordings and published materials via mail, or
    onsite collection; or increasingly, via digital library loan (see below).
    Usage statistics are outlined in the table below:
    2016-2017 COMPARISON (YTD) Previous five years
    2016 2017 %
    change 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
    Total enquiries
    answered 3191 3099 -3 N/A 2532 2051 2600 3191
    Physical Loans
    Books & other materials 20 10 -50 41 48 25 20 20
    Recordings 293 218 -26 738 634 382 293 293
    Scores 261 214 -18 943 627 369 289 261
    TOTAL 574 442 -23 1722 1309 776 602 574
    Digital Loans 2359 1921 -19 1307 1938 1773 1867 2359
    Items produced for sale 3177 4000 26 2950 2830 2870 3839 3177
    New Items Catalogued 1156 1266 10 871 758 990 956 1156
    Hire of Parts 20 24 20 29 20 17 24 20
    NOTES TO TABLE
     The 2017 figures include:
    136 requests from secondary students (141 in 2016; 111 in 2015; 124 in 2014),
    62 from tertiary students (88 in 2016; 90 in 2015; 97 in 2014),
    712 from secondary teachers (721 in 2016; 506 in 2015; 501 in 2014),
    298 from studio teachers (242 in 2016; 180 in 2015; 180 in 2014)
    194 from academics (124 in 2016; 93 in 2015; 57 in 2014),
    251 from professional performers (258 in 2016; 223 in 2015; 199 in 2014),
    160 from composers (160 in 2016; 128 in 2015; 89 in 2014),
    185 from arts organisations (186 in 2016; 216 in 2015; 169 in 2014),
    23 from media (31 in 2016; 25 in 2015; 52 in 2014),
    536 from the general public (592 in 2016; 430 in 2015; 252 in 2014),

    380 from overseas (414 in 2016; 385 in 2015; 210 in 2014),
    162 from commercial suppliers (234 in 2016; 213 in 2015)

    The AMC offers an online service, the Digital Score Library, through which AMC members can
    download scores for study and perusal purposes. Unlike the loan of physical scores, the
    Digital Score Library can also be accessed by AMC members who are resident overseas.
    Each score borrowed is watermarked on every page with the name of the member and the
    expiry date of the loan, and the files become invisible on the loan expiry date. Whilst
    performers, teachers and students may print out loan scores to try out, we highlight the
    obligation that they must purchase or hire materials for any performance. The AMC has also
    been working with examining bodies such as the AMEB to ensure that reproduced copies
    such as these are not used in exams, ensuring that the rights of composers and creators is
    being protected.

    The table below shows usage over a 5-year period:
    2017 2016 2015 2014 2013
    Digi scores available 10,671 9,969 9,677 9,269 8,099
    Digi scores borrowed 1,921 2,359 1,867 1,773 1,938
    Unique users 524 555 453 478 291
    Loans of physical materials 442 574 602 776 1,309

    Other factors that have an impact on these figures over the period shown include the
    increase in online samples available on the AMC website, and the extensive curated lists of
    works suitable for High School performance, which enable users to go directly to purchase
    the work, rather than undertake perusal of a range of repertoire via loans.

    2.1.2 The AMC Collection and Artist Representation
    2.1.2.1 The AMC Collection
    The scope of the AMC collection is primarily “art musics” as articulated in both the AMC’s
    Business Plan and Representation Policy, and covering notated composition; electroacoustic
    music and electronica; improvised music, including contemporary jazz; sound art and
    installation sound; multimedia, web and film sound and music; and related genres and
    techniques.
    This scope is complemented by the many other genres represented in the collection of
    products (CDs, publications) available for sale through the AMC’s retail activities.
    As part of AMC’s relocation from The Rocks to Ultimo in 2013, the physical collection has
    been in storage at Paul Davies Heritage Architects in Balmain, who has generously offered
    space under arrangements affordable for AMC. The logistics of regularly accessing materials
    from Balmain remain complicated, however the completion of the digitisation project in early
    2015 means many more materials are available for digital library loan.

    2.1.2.3 AMC Representation Policy
    Background
    The AMC’s Representation policy requires applicants to fulfil a range of criteria before
    admission, rather than admission based on the outcome of a peer review process. The criteria
    includes the number of professional performances, broadcasts, independent commissions,
    publications, commercial CD releases and the like, and has been compiled to further embrace
    artists actively involved in a diverse range of contemporary artistic practice, and those whose

    works have achieved an appropriate level of utility in various contexts. A category of
    Pedagogical Representation is also provided for, with differing criteria, recognising those
    composers working primarily in the field of education.
    A significant feature of the policy relates to the embracing of the terms “creative artist” and
    “improviser”, in addition to the term “composer”, which reflects much of what occurs in
    contemporary practice, and how artists define themselves. Included in the 2016-2020
    Strategic Plan is a goal of activating a modern definition of the term “composer”, and in
    2017 a series of commissioned articles for AMC’s online magazine Resonate sought diverse
    perspectives on what it means to be an Australian composer, teasing out the complexities of
    how contemporary creative practice continues to challenge categorisation and terminologies.
    In addition to thew question of terminology, the AMC Representation Policy provides for
    Affiliate Representation, to be granted at the invitation of the Board, enabling those who
    have contributed to commissioning, or promoting, or performing Australian repertoire over a
    significant period of time to be included in the AMC’s collection.

    AMC offers 2 rounds of applications for Representation each year.

    2017 Representation
    In 2017 two rounds (2 rounds in 2016) of applications were processed. 71 artists who had
    expressed interest in applying were invited to apply in these 2 rounds (62 artists in 2016; 55 in
    2015; 53 in 2014), and of these, 40 applications were received (25 in 2016; 17 in 2015; 24 in
    2014).
    39 artists have been offered Representation following an assessment of their applications (24
    in 2016; 16 in 2015; 22 in 2014).
    The successful applicants in 2017 are:
    Notated composition/ concert music
    Andrew Ball, Simon Barber, Jesse Budel, Kim Cannan,
    Alex Chilvers, James Cuddeford, Tom Henry, Kim Cunio,
    Jakub Jankowski, Petar Jovanov, Hilary Kleinig, David
    Kram, Cameron Lam, Natahsa Pearson, Daniel Portelli,
    Shaun Rigney, Nick Russoniello, Charlie Sdraulig, Paul
    Smith, Samuel Smith, Alex Turley, Ade Vincent, Lachlan
    Wilson, Samantha Wolf, Elizabeth Younan, Miriama
    Young
    Experimental/non-notated composition Leah Blankendaal, John Arthur Grant
    Jazz and Screen
    Luke Altmann, Darrin Archer, Robert Burke, Craig
    Collinge, Yantra de Vilder, David Fennell, Rafael Karlen,
    Nadje Noordhuis, Michael Pignéguy, Keyna Wilkins
    Pedagogical Meredith Connie,

    The success rates indicate that composers are only lodging an application when they are
    confident that their application will meet the eligibility criteria. The lower rate of
    applications received from those invited is largely due to some composers finding that they
    have difficulty in meeting the criteria, and deferring applying until further career
    development or success is achieved.
    In 2017 the AMC Board approved a proposal that Indigenous composers Deborah Cheetham
    and William Barton be invited to accept Associate Representation status with the AMC.
    Further planning is underway to include the 5 participants in the AMPlify Indigenous
    Composers Initiative, and this will be completed in 2018.

    2.1.3 Catalogue
    At 31 December 2017 there were 40,620 items in the AMC catalogue (39,354 in 2016; 38,198
    in 2015; 37,242 in 2014), an increase of 1,266 (1,156 in 2016; 956 in 2015; 990 in 2014).
    In general, there has been a significant increase in these figures in recent years, a direct result
    of the utility of our online system, and the capacity for artists to upload works to the AMC
    database through the Represented Artist interface, the Contribute website.
    The AMC takes great pride in the quality and depth of the data recorded in the catalogue,
    which has developed into a major asset, providing users with highly detailed search
    functionality. The AMC’s catalogue data is highly regarded by the National Library of
    Australia’s national bibliographic database, Libraries Australia, which provides access to
    AMC’s data to libraries around the country.
    Since 2001 the AMC has been registered as a publisher with the National Library of Australia
    to assign ISMNs to music works. The International Standard Music Number (ISMN) is a unique
    number used to identify music publications. It is used to identify a particular piece of music or
    item, such as an instrumental or vocal part, whenever information about music publications
    needs to be recorded or communicated. An ISMN is for print, microform or braille formats of
    music publications, whether available for sale, hire, gratis, or for copyright purposes only.
    The ISMN Agency has sole responsibility for assigning publisher identifiers and an ISMN for all
    music titles published in Australia, on behalf of the International ISMN Agency located in
    Berlin. Details of all publishers registered with the Australian ISMN Agency are sent to the
    International Agency for publication in the printed Music Publishers' International ISMN
    Directory. The Australian Agency supports on-line searching of Australian publishers.
    In 2017, the AMC assigned 532 ISMNs to scores (454 in 2016; 390 in 2015; 438 in 2014). To
    December 2017, ISMNs assigned by the AMC totaled 6,647.
    These activities of catalogue sharing and ISMN assigning are important tools in promoting
    Australian artists and their works.

    2.1.4 Education Services
    The AMC has played an important role in the development of education resources pertaining
    to Australian music for over 2 decades, enabling teachers and students to increase their
    knowledge and understanding of Australian music, and its creation and presentation.
    In 2017 there were no further resource kits published, due to staff resources being applied to
    meet the exceptional demand in sales. However, there are several kits in development for
    release in 2018 and beyond.
    The AMC will continue to develop education resource materials as human and financial
    resources permit, and will only continue to do so if outcomes are at least cost neutral to the
    AMC.

    2.2 TRANSACTIONS – Sales and Membership
    The AMC’s Transaction activities through sales and membership are primary income streams
    for the organisation, with sales income providing royalty returns to artists and copyright
    holders.

    2.2.1 Facsimile Scores
    The AMC in 2017 continued to make available for sale and hire unpublished works from the
    library collection, enabling access for performers, encouraging performance of this
    repertoire, and providing composers with royalty income from sales (15% for scores produced
    from a hard copy master and 25% for those produced from a digital master), and hire fees
    for orchestral performance materials (65%). Formal licence arrangements with certain
    publishers (Boosey & Hawkes, Ricordi London, and Faber Music) enable copyright controlled
    works to be commercially available in this way (within Australia and New Zealand Territories)
    through the AMC (exclusively), with royalties returned to the publisher.
    During 2017, 4,000 facsimile scores were produced, a significant increase in demand (3,177 in
    2016, 3,839 in 2015, 2,870 in 2014). See under Retail / Wholesale activities below for details of
    published and unpublished score sales.
    During 2017 performance materials for 24 existing orchestral works were hired from the AMC
    for performance (20 in 2016, 24 in 2015; 17 in 2014) - several of these transactions were with
    overseas orchestras and ensembles. These transactions vary greatly from year to year,
    dependent on programming policies of programmers and presenters, and the number of
    performances of published works, or of newly commissioned works, which are usually not
    managed by the AMC.

    2.2.2 Retail / Wholesale Activities
    The AMC continues to be active in providing access to a broad range of Australian music
    products. In addition to facsimile scores, materials available through the AMC’s retail
    activities include recordings, published scores, books, educational resources, and other
    materials, representing the largest collection of Australian music products available
    anywhere.
    2017 2016 2015 2014 2013
    Products available 28,568 26,912 26,864 25,127 24,828
    AMC inventory
    value $4,608 $7,929 $9,008 $10,253 $13,062
    Total sales $160,315 $114,796 $108,830 $98,772 $97,708
    Notes:
     Products available as at 31 December each year
     Inventory values significantly reduced from ~$150k over last decade
     80% of all sales are for AMC produced product; 17% from 3rd party suppliers under drop-ship arrangements;
    and 3% from existing physical inventory.
     54% of all sales transactions take place online (67% in 2016, 65% in 2015; 65% in 2014; 67% in 2013)
    Decrease reflects additional large orders from libraries in 2017.
     2017 sales made up of 2,560 customer orders from 1,958 unique customers (2,321 orders from 1,883
    customers in 2016; 2,233 orders from 1,812 customers in 2015; 2,098 orders from 1,629 unique customers in
    2014)

    Since 2010, content from 3rd party suppliers (publishers and record labels) is only sold under
    drop-ship arrangements, where the suppliers deliver directly to the customer in response to
    orders lodged via the AMC website.

    Suppliers with formal dropship arrangements with the AMC include Tall Poppies, Move
    Records, Rufus records, Wirripang Publications, Rimshot Music, and Devirra (formerly Alfred
    Publishing), amongst others.
    The AMC continues to work with significant suppliers such as ABC Classics and Jazz (who are
    bound by restricted or exclusive arrangements with distributors) to make products available
    for sale.

    Total sales for 2017 were $160,315 ($114,796 in 2016, $108,830 in 2015; $98,772 in 2014), a
    39% increase on the previous year. Whilst there were large orders placed by institutional and
    State libraries which boosted sales, at least half the increase was a result of direct customer
    orders. 80% of these sales are of AMC produced products (providing a royalty flow to
    creators), 17% are from 3rd party suppliers, and the remainder from inventory holdings. And
    65% of the total sales income is from online sales on the AMC website.

    In 2017 internally produced products performed exceptionally well, particularly facsimile
    scores, which reflects the usefulness of the “Repertoire Navigator” functionality on the AMC
    website to performers, teachers and students seeking repertoire to purchase. During 2017
    AMC began making a significant number of newly lodged scores available for sale as
    downloadable scores, and this is reflected in the sales figures. AMC will be expanding sales of
    digital facsimile scores over time, which will add further revenue opportunities in our most
    lucrative product segment.
    Selected 2017 sales figures are detailed in the table below.
    2017 Sales $ 2016 Sales $ 2015 Sales $ 2014 Sales
    External CDs (from other suppliers) 9,219 8,279 8,662 8,753
    Internal CDs (AMC labels) 632 620 452 764
    MP3 downloads 849 718 606 808
    External Scores (published) 13,834 13,188 10,861 9,984
    Internal Scores (AMC facsimiles hard copies) 110,185 74,414 77,779 68,343
    External Books (from other suppliers) 3,473 2,281 699 476
    Internal Books (AMC produced) 327 453 435 517
    External ebooks 172 157 n/a n/a
    Internal ebooks 138 140 n/a n/a
    Internal Education Kits (AMC produced) 11,046 11,670 8,258 8,459
    Digital Score downloads (sales) 10,222 2,802 1,643 503
    DVD (from other suppliers) 26 105 95 53

    2.2.3 Membership
    In 2017 there were 1,189 financial members across individual, institution, and secondary
    school student members (1,155 in 2016; 1,024 in 2015; 1,223 in 2014; 1,268 in 2013). Of these,
    around 71% live in metropolitan areas, 24% in regional areas, and 5% are overseas.
    A larger community of some 8,335 non-financial members (2,465 in 2016; 3,045 in 2015; 3,473
    in 2014; 2,977 in 2013) continues to interact with the AMC at various levels. Non-financial
    members are defined as those having held membership at some stage over the past 5 years,

    and who are still engaged with the AMC in other ways. Membership income in 2017 realised
    $100,644 ($101,601 in 2016; $90,233 in 2015; $91,284 in 2014) representing a slight decline in
    2016 figures, a result of staff resources addressing the significant increase in sales demand.
    These income figures do fluctuate from year to year according to the mix of institution /
    individual members. Membership renewal rates remain consistently around 73% - with the
    majority of lapsed members being students no longer requiring AMC services.
    Membership Services
    During 2017 the AMC continued to publish through the online Resonate Magazine, news and
    blog items, feature articles, and interviews, recognising the important contribution that this
    publication makes in the documentation and discourse of the Australian music scene.
    This content is highlighted through the monthly AMC eNews , which for AMC members also
    includes the Composer and Performer Opportunities Listing, compiled from a range of
    sources including our IAMIC colleagues around the world. AMC eNews reaches a larger
    audience beyond AMC members, a population that is steadily growing – it was sent to 4,988
    recipients in December 2017 (4,652 in Dec 2016; 4,275 in Dec 2015; 4,001 in Dec 2014; 3,696 In
    Dec 2013), a 7.2% increase on the previous year.
    The Australian Music Calendar provides a vital promotional tool for composers, performers,
    and presenters, and a useful reference tool for audiences. Statistics from the Australian Music
    Calendar listings are provided in the table below.
    2017 2016 2015 2014
    No. of event listings 1,211 1,059 1,132 1,105
    No. of works performed 2,689 2,541 2,841 2,787
    World premieres 337 535 479 530
    Australian premieres 14 7 n/a 12

    Events are lodged in the AMC database via an online form, submitted by composers,
    performers or presenters. AMC staff also log significant performance events not submitted,
    particularly international performances. Direct links from performance data to “work” pages
    (including audio/score samples) and “artist” pages are a feature of the website, enabling
    audiences to preview works being performed. (This also applies in reverse – “work” pages
    and “artist” pages feature links to performances).

    2.3 COMMUNICATIONS AND MARKETING
    2.3.1 Overview
    AMC approaches its communications activities in a strategic way, co-ordinating general
    website content, Resonate magazine content, emails to members, and social media postings,
    to ensure maximum reach and impact.

    2.3.2 Communications
    In 2017 particular highlights of AMC communications activities covering promotion, advocacy,
    and news included:
     Reports and articles on AMC social media channels and on Resonate associated with
    the AMPlify Indigenous Composer Initiative attracted particular attention, recognising
    the importance that this project has for the art music sector.
     Artist connect bulletins are periodically issued to AMC Represented artists on matters
    relating to opportunities and online content. In 2017 topics covered how to construct

    an effective biography, the use of social media to enhance profile, and the importance
    of registering performances in the AMC Calendar. A partnership with APRA Writer
    services staff provides access to briefing interviews regarding APRA matters.
     As usual, AMC’s online magazine Resonate included feature articles celebrating
    significant birthdays of senior artists (also celebrated on AMC social media channels),
    other milestones and anniversaries, and specific feature articles as part of Resonate’s
    ‘Insight’ series, exploring the creative processes of featured artists. These activities
    inevitably attract much web traffic, and generate positive feedback.

    2.3.3 Marketing and Promotions
    The AMC’s marketing activities play a vital role in maintaining our relationships with our
    diverse constituency, and beyond. Many clients are recognising the richness and specialist
    nature of our constituency base, and approach us for advertising or cross-promotional
    opportunities, and we have ongoing relationships with various networks that provide a
    diverse range of avenues for promotional activity.
    Examples of some of these in 2017 include:
     Exchange relationships, including with RealTime, Limelight, AMEB, and ASME;
     Advertising relationships, including with performing organisations such as ACO, MVA;
    competitions and prizes including The Trust, and Michael Kieran Harvey Travelling
    Scholarship; the Melbourne Music Prize;
     Content sharing arrangements, including with Limelight magazine, and Artshub;
     Promotional materials tailored to meet specific interests at conferences and in-service
    training courses, in the education sector and beyond.
     Attendance, presentations, or representation on panels at conferences and other
    events, and presentations also made to students at tertiary institutions around the
    country.
     Access through various networks, and mailouts to their members, including those such
    as state Music Teachers Associations; AMEB and ASME; the major symphony
    orchestras’ education programs; and the Regional Conservatoria in NSW.
    Through its relationship with APRA - AMCOS, AMC enjoys access to their various
    communication channels, which in addition to the APRA AMCOS website, include APRAP, and
    Chalkboard, a newsletter specifically aimed at the primary and secondary education sectors.

    2.3.4 AMC Web Page
    Webpage statistics can be summarised as follows:
    AMC public website
    2014 %Change 2015 %Change 2016 %Change 2017 Per day
    Visits
    (Sessions)
    299,661 2.04% 305,787 3.16% 315,678 -4.7% 300,807 824
    Unique users 206,168 2.11% 210,508 -0.1% 209,444 -1.1% 207,181 568
    Pageviews 1,054,775 3.21% 1,088,592 -0.24% 1,079,055 -3.1% 1,045,753 2,865
    Local /
    international
    Countries
    71%/29%
    211
    71%/29%
    215
    73%/27%
    218
    64%/36%
    207
    Referrals:
    Search
    engines
    Direct
    Referring sites
    80.9%
    10%
    9.1%
    81.4%
    10.4%
    8.2%
    80.8%
    10.3%
    8.8%
    75.8%
    15.7%
    8.6%

    AMC’s website continues to rank very highly in search results in Google and other search
    engines – composer name searches generally result in AMC listings appearing in the top 3,

    whilst unique work title or product title searches generally placing AMC as number 1 in
    search results. Such “visibility” is a direct result of the emphasis that AMC places on creating
    high quality metadata relating to people, works, and products.
    Content in the AMC database contributed by AMC Represented Artists continued to expand
    in 2017. The ongoing addition of new works by Represented Artists, submitted through the
    online artist interface ‘Contribute’ provides users with continually updated data, and enables
    composers to manage their catalogue in AMC’s database, and in 2017 99% of collection
    submissions were lodged in this way (97% in 2016; 97% in 2015; 96% in 2014; 90% in 2013;
    73% in 2012).

    2.3.5 Social Media
    During 2017 the AMC continued to develop its engagement with audiences on social media,
    reinforcing its presence with regular postings on facebook and twitter, strategically managed
    in regards to content and regularity. AMC Twitter followers represent a small but welltargeted,
    engaged audience, including new music practitioners, educators, and key arts
    organisations including from other artforms.
    The tables below summarise our activity.
    Facebook
    2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
    Followers 1,342 1,589 2,002 2,508 2,806
    No.
    visits/impressions
    218,131 297,396 328,765 352,186 1,099,474
    Referrals to AMC site 6,983 8,490 8,969 9,014 10,353
    Twitter
    AMC Twitter followers represent a small but well-targeted, engaged audience, including new
    music practitioners, educators, and key arts organisations including from other artforms.
    2015 2016 2017
    Followers 2,347* 2,817 3,042
    Impressions 193,489 203,755 227,500
    Engagement average 1.63% 1.7% 1.8%
    Clicks 1,022 (2.8 per day) 916 (2.50 per day) 910 (2.5 per day)
    Retweets 599 (1.64 per day) 487 (1.33 per day) 445 (1.22 per day)
    Likes 497 (1.36 per day) 657 (1.8 per day) 733 (2 per day)
    Gender of followers 49%f / 51%m 55%f/45%m 47%f/53%m

    2.4 FINANCE AND ADMINISTRATION
    2.4.1 Governance
    2.4.1.1 Overview
    In 2014 the Board developed and adopted a new Board Charter, and Corporate Governance
    Statement, taking into account the organisation’s new structure, new Board structure, and
    refined the relationship with APRA AMCOS in providing accounting services.
    Policy development or revisions included expansion of the Risk Management framework as
    part of AMC’s Strategic Plan, covering operational risks and key personnel. The Board
    structure adopted in 2015 continued to develop in 2017, with three new Board members
    appointed in the second half of the year.

    2.4.1.2 Board Meetings and Membership in 2017
    In 2017 there were 5 Board meetings (4 in 2016; 5 in 2015; 5 in 2014).

    Membership of the Board during 2017 was:
    CHAIR: Genevieve Lacey
    Freelance musician/artistic director
    Director since December 2013
    Company Secretary: Chris Gardoll
    Former CFO APRA AMCOS
    Prof. Margaret Barrett
    Head of School, University of Queensland School of
    Music.
    Director since December 2013
    Brad Cohen
    Conductor; Artistic Director, West Australian
    Opera; Founder and Creative Director TIDO
    Music
    Director since December 2017
    Deborah Cheetham AO
    Soprano; actor, composer, playright
    Director since December 2017
    David Francis
    Executive Director, Four Winds Festival
    Director since December 2015
    Prof. Cat Hope
    Head of Music, Monash University
    Director since December 2015
    Sally Howland
    Former Head APRA AMCOS Member
    Services
    Director since December 2013
    Benjamin Northey
    Associate Conductor, MSO
    Director since December 2013
    Martel Ollerenshaw
    Arts Administrator, Creative Producer
    Director since August 2017

    2.4.2 Organisation Change Management and Staffing
    During 2017 the core structure included 2 staff members full-time, and a range of part-time
    and casual staff, some working remotely, totalling 4.9 f/t equivalent. With the high demand
    in sales activity through the year, a new part-time position of Membership Manager was
    established, and an appointment made in October, bringing the staffing to 5.1 f/t equivalent.
    This appointment contributes to addressing the AMC’s Strategic Plan goal of “Investing in
    organisational capacity”, and further reinforcement of the AMC staffing will be necessary as
    business requirements are met, and a more proactive approach is possible.
    AMC staff do outstanding work, and show outstanding loyalty to each other, to the
    organisation and its ideals, and to AMC constituents.

    2.4.3 Finance
    The 2017 financial results are available in other documentation provided. The Company
    generated a surplus of $25,232 (surplus of $64,681 in 2016; surplus of $47,711 in 2015; surplus
    of $52,708 in 2014).
    With this 2017 result the AMC has built further on its reserves, which at the close of the
    reporting period total $195,336. This represents 26.9% of 2017 expenses, exceeding the 20%
    accumulated reserves benchmark mandated by the Australia Council.

    2.5 PROJECTS
    2.5.1 ARC Research Project - MARS
    The AMC is an industry partner with APRA, Western Sydney University, and Waikato
    University in NZ, in a three-year ARC Linkage Grant (2015-2018) project, of $645,000 over 3
    years, which will develop MARS – the Music Affect Recommender System. Led by Prof Roger
    Dean at the MARCS Institute, this project will support users in discovering music based on
    their own individual preferences. Importantly, this aspect of AMC’s IT infrastructure
    development is designed to foster ‘cultural omnivores’ – providing recommendations to users
    which encourage the discovery of new works, artists and genres. This research will be

    integrated into AMC’s IT infrastructure, and provide a significant leap forward in engaging
    audiences with Australian Art Music.

    2.5.2 AMPlify: Art Music Plus - Artist and Repertoire Development
    The AMC has historically been involved not only in initiating and presenting composer
    development projects, but also in providing advice and encouragement to other
    organisations and institutions who express an interest in investing in this area. 2014 saw the
    initial implementation of AMPlify (Art Music Plus), AMC’s artist development framework that
    emphasises cross-genre and/or cross-artform elements in each incarnation, the development
    of new repertoire, and engagement with new audiences as essential elements.
    In 2015, AMC entered into a partnership with APRA AMCOS’s Song Hubs artist development
    initiative for AMPlify TRANCE, pairing art music composer Piotr Nowotnik with Trance artist
    MaRLo to create new repertoire, and provide a range of other outcomes. The project was
    realised in 2016 achieving significant outcomes, with the new work created being performed
    on a national tour to Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth. Sydney and Melbourne
    performances were delivered to audiences of over 5,000 at each venue. The work was also
    performed at the Electric Daisy festival in New York, and released on the Dutch label Armada.
    Continuing the partnership with Song Hubs, in late 2016 AMC called for expressions of
    interest for an Australian artist to work with German jazz pianist Julia Kadel, and
    composer/sound artist Julian Day was selected to participate. AMPlify Germany took place
    during 2017, with the artists collaborating online over some months, and Julian Day spending
    time in Berlin with Julia Kadel developing work that was presented at 3 events in Berlin, with
    further editions planned for 2018 and beyond.
    In 2017 under the AMPlify umbrella, the Indigenous Composer Initiative, a partnership
    between Moogahlin Performing Arts, Eora College, Australian National University School of
    Music, Ensemble Offspring, and AMC, was successful in securing funding from APRA’s
    Cultural Grants Program. The project saw 5 Indigenous composers (Troy Russell, Rhyan
    Clapham, Tim Gray, Brenda Gifford, and Elizabeth Sheppard) preparing works for
    performance and recording in 2017. A series of workshops took place during the year, and a
    recording made at ANU SOM in Canberra (for release in 2018), with a subsequent
    performance taking place at Eora College for the Redfern community and industry
    representatives.
    This project has resulted in a number of successes, and has opened doors for the participating
    artists. The performance was repeated in April 2018 at the Biaime’s Ngunna Festival in
    Brewarrina in Western NSW. Participant Brenda Gifford was subsequently commissioned by
    the Canberra International Festival of Music for a new work for their festival opening
    concert, and also commissioned by Ensemble Offspring to work with them for the SOH Baby
    Proms series; Rhyan Clapham won the Peter Sculthorpe Fellowship for 2018 and plans a series
    of new works to record; Elizabeth Sheppard is composing choral work for various contexts,
    including for choirs in Western Sydney; Troy Russell has an artist residency in Blacktown in
    2018, collaborating with a choreographer on a new work for dance; and Tim Gray continues
    to write for film.
    The ICI project was successful in securing further APRA funding to continue in 2018, with new
    works planned for recording and performance in Canberra and Sydney in November.

    2.5.4 AMC Publishing
    AMC publishes from time to time CDs, books and education resources. In 2017, due to staff
    resources being applied to the meeting the significant increase in sales demand, no
    publications were released.
    Other publication projects are underway for release in 2018.

    2.5.5 The Art Music Awards, and Paul Lowin Prizes
    2.5.4.1 Art Music Awards
    The 2017 Art Music Awards returned to Sydney after the Melbourne event in 2016.
    The awards attracted 234 nominations across the categories (205 in 2016; 191 in 2015; 197 in
    2014), and national and state panels were convened to assess them, selecting a shortlist of
    finalists and identifying the winners. The event, held at Sydney Recital Centre in August, was
    again highly successful, and stimulated much positive feedback.
    The winners of the National and State/Territory awards represent a diverse range of music
    creation, presentation, and promotion, of the highest quality:
    2017 Art Music Awards – winners
    Orchestral Work of the Year: Serenade for Tenor, Saxophone and Orchestra ("My Dear Benjamin") by Lyle Chan, text
    by Benjamin Britten and Wulff Scherchen
    Performance of the Year: Peter de Jager’s performance of Chris Dench’s Piano Sonata
    Vocal / Choral Work of the Year: Tree of Codes, by Liza Lim
    Jazz Work of the Year: Now Noise, by Tom O'Halloran
    Instrumental Work of the Year: How Forests Think, by Liza Lim
    Award for Excellence by an Organisation: Speak Percussion for their 2016 program, and sustained contribution to
    Australian music
    Award for Excellence by an Individual: Daryl Buckley for over thirty years of contribution to the international projection of
    Australian contemporary performance, ideas and practice
    Award for Excellence in Music Education: Moorambilla Voices for their 2016 season
    Award for Excellence in a Regional Area: Tura New Music for their 2016 Regional Program
    Award for Excellence in Experimental Music: Clocked Out with Bruce and Jocelyn Wolfe for 'The Piano Mill' project
    Award for Excellence in Jazz: Andrea Keller for the creation, presentation and release of contemporary jazz in 2016
    State and Territory Awards
    ACT Award, in the category of Instrumental Work of the Year: The 7 Great Inventions Of The Modern Industrial
    Age by Sally Greenaway
    NSW Award, in the category of Excellence in Music Education: Sydney Improvised Music Association (SIMA) for Young
    Women's Jazz Workshop program
    NT Award, in the category of Excellence in a Regional Area: Ngarukuruwala for Ngiya Awungarra (I Am Here, Now)
    QLD Award, in the category of Excellence by an Individual: Vanessa Tomlinson for conceiving and curating the 2016
    Australian Percussion Gathering
    SA Award, in the category of Performance of the Year: Adelaide Chamber Singers for Agnus Dei (Do Not Stand At My
    Grave And Weep) by Paul Stanhope
    TAS Award, in the category of Excellence by an Organisation: Mona for Mofo 2016
    VIC Award, in the category of Performance of the Year: Chamber Made Opera for Permission To Speak by Kate Neal,
    with text by Tamara Saulwick
    WA Award, in the category of Jazz Work Of The Year: Help You Along Your Way by Daniel Susnjar

    2.5.4.2 Paul Lowin Prizes
    The AMC manages the Paul Lowin Prizes on behalf of Perpetual, and they are awarded every 2 or
    3 years, depending on interest earnings on the trust’s capital investment. The prizes include
    $25,000 for an orchestral composition, and $15,000 for a “song cycle”. A song cycle as defined in
    the prize rules includes works for single or multiple voices, and also works that may be considered
    music theatre works.
    The prizes were last awarded in 2016, and will be offered again in 2019.

    2.5.6 International Promotions and Market Development
    2.5.6.1 Classical: Next and Jazzahead
    Since 2015 AMC has been involved in a partnership with Sounds Australia, developing the
    Australian presence at two important industry showcases: Jazzahead in Bremen, held each
    April; and Classical:NEXT in Rotterdam, held each May.
    In 2017 Sounds Australia again took out a display stand at Jazzahead and at Classical:NEXT,
    providing support to the Australian delegates. A diverse delegation of some 20 Australian
    delegates attended Classical:NEXT (30 in 2016). The Sounds Australian stand again hosted a
    reception for other delegates, and again made an impact. Australians were involved in

    Project Pitch sessions, Networking sessions, and Conference panels, and our presence
    continues to develop in a very positive way. Melbourne Recital Centre’s Marshall McGuire was
    invited to serve on the CN Jury for 2018, following Genevieve Lacey’s term on the 2017 Jury.
    In 2017 the AMC and APRA AMCOS became a partner in the CN Fellows Program, which
    provides the opportunity for emerging artists and arts workers to attend the event, and
    benefit from being monitored by a CN veteran, and develop their international networking
    skills. AMC undertook a call for expressions of interest, and from a highly competitive field,
    percussionist Kaylee Melville, and composer and arts writer Leah Blankendaal were selected
    to participate, and were provided with funding support offered by AMC and APRA AMCOS.
    Australian involvement in this program will continue in 2018.
    Australia’s involvement with this event continues to develop, and provides a platform for
    Australia’s artists to engage in a larger marketplace, and expand their networks. In 2017 AMC
    joined the European Jazz Network as a member, and AMC Director Martel Ollerenshaw is on
    the EJN Board. AMC is planning to undertake further market development activity for
    Australian jazz artists to more fully exploit our involvement in this important network.
    AMC’s international promotions and advocacy more broadly will continue to be a priority,
    and the ongoing relationships with Sounds Australia, APRA AMCOS, the Australia Council,
    and other key stakeholders, are vital in achieving appropriate international outcomes for art
    music repertoire and practitioners.

    2.5.6.2 International Association of Music Information Centres (IAMIC) and the International
    Society for Contemporary Music (ISCM)
    In 2017 the AMC continued to enhance its relationships through IAMIC and ISCM, and
    actively participate in the further development of these networks. Through these
    relationships, opportunities are created for Australian artists, through collaborations and
    exchanges, and by the sharing of information relating to the international music landscape.
    IAMIC
    As a prominent member of IAMIC, AMC is invited to attend the annual conference each year,
    and the IAMIC Spring meeting held alongside Classical: NEXT.
    This network is an important one for the AMC, setting benchmarks for AMC to measure itself
    against, and benefiting from the sharing of information and experiences on the functioning
    of a music centre. AMC leads this network in regards to digitisation and online activity, and
    achieves the highest level of earned income of any Music Information Centre (MIC), at above
    49%, well ahead of Canada (22%) and Slovakia (20%). Most MICs (including New Zealand)
    only manage to achieve 5% or less of earned income against their subsidies from government
    or performing right society sources.
    ISCM
    As the Australian National Section for ISCM, AMC submits 6 works each year to be considered
    for inclusion in the annual ISCM World Music Days Festival, the largest international festival
    of contemporary music.
    At the 2017 ISCM Festival in Vancouver the Australian submission included works by Joshua
    Hyde, Cathy Milliken, Kate Neal, Rosalind Page, Lachlan Skipworth, and Samuel Smith. The
    work by Lachlan Skipworth was selected in the festival program (2 Australian works
    performed in 2016 in Korea; 1 in 2015 in Slovenia; 1 in 2014 in Wroclaw). Lachlan represented
    Australia as the First Delegate in the ISCM General Assembly.

    3. SUMMARY
    In 2017 the AMC provided a large and diverse audience with access to the music created by
    Australian composers, improvisers and sound artists, through a diverse range of activities:
    4,000 scores were produced for sale (3,177 in 2016; 3,839 in 2015, 2,870 in 2014), not to
    mention additional sales of MP3 recordings, CDs and published scores; 2, 363 scores and
    recordings were loaned for perusal (2,933 in 2016; 2,469 in 2015, 2,549 in 2014),. Additionally,
    1,266 new works were catalogued in AMC’s database (1,156 in 2016; 956 in 2015, 990 in
    2014).
    The AMC represented an additional 39 artists in 2016 (24 in 2016; 16 in 2015, 22 in 2014),
    working across the spectrum of notated composition, experimental/non-notated composition
    and sound art, jazz and in pedagogy. The AMC catalogue now captures the works of 719
    Australian composers and includes over 40,620 items - scores, recordings and information
    resources by or relating to these composers. Through representation, each of these artists
    (650 of whom are active/living) have a dedicated profile on the AMC website (accessible to
    the high traffic volumes achieved there), and a specific online management system to
    maintain their catalogue of work with the AMC. These composers also have access to the
    AMC facsimile publishing and sales services.
    The financial results achieved in 2017 further contribute to building reserves, and
    appropriately mitigate against the inherent risks of retail operations.
    Working with stakeholders from creation, through to performance, publishing and recording,
    and end audiences, the AMC has actively aided the creation, documentation and
    dissemination of the music of Australian art music creators. In 2017 we have continued to
    provide essential infrastructure support to the vibrant and diverse art music community.
    The continuing survival of the AMC in meeting the significant challenges presented each year
    are indeed a testament to the many who contribute to the organisation. First and foremost,
    the committed staff, who have such passion and care for the work that they do, and whose
    contribution to Australian music continues to be truly significant, and inevitably underacknowledged.
    I thank them for their outstanding work in 2017, and the loyalty to the
    organisation that they continually demonstrate, and more broadly, loyalty to the sector.
    The often unseen work of the AMC’s Board of Directors must also be acknowledged. We are
    grateful for what they bring to the organisation, the skills and expertise that they offer, and
    the support that they provide to AMC’s management and staff, both directly and by example.
    Similarly, the role that APRA AMCOS has taken on with the AMC is marked by a great respect
    for the value of the AMC’s work, and what it brings to the sector. The ongoing daily support
    of the APRA AMCOS staff, in various ways, is gratefully acknowledged.
    The support of the AMC’s key funding partners is vital. The Australia Council and APRA
    AMCOS’s essential support of AMC to continue its important work on behalf of Australian
    music is critical to our survival, and this support is gratefully acknowledged.
    There are many in the Australian music community who contribute to the scene in so many
    ways, through the work that they do. The composers, performers and presenters, the
    educators, and the many others who assist in the work of the AMC as a national service
    organisation for Australian music, is also gratefully acknowledged.

    John Davis, CEO
    April 2017

 

 

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