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The Hon Peter Garrett AM MP
Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts

Indigenous music experts on Breakthrough panel

Media release
7 May 2009

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Christine Anu, Rhoda Roberts and Rob Collins are applying their expertise to assess applications for the Indigenous contemporary music program, Breakthrough.

Arts Minister Peter Garrett said Breakthrough would provide funding for the best three bands or artists who apply to make a high quality recording of the best tracks of their repertoire. This will help them get airplay on radio and be heard by a wider audience.

Contemporary Indigenous bands or artists have until 11 May 2009 to apply for $25,000 each in Breakthrough funding.

"Time is running out, so I urge promising Indigenous musicians to submit their applications as soon as possible," said Mr Garrett.

"I am delighted that three high profile Indigenous music and arts industry professionals are assessing the Breakthrough applications. They all have extensive experience in music, media and arts industries and are brilliant role models for up and coming artists.

"They each bring a particular understanding of the issues Indigenous artists face in carving out a successful music career and their experiences will help them identify musicians with commercial potential.

"Christine Anu is one of Australia’s most successful Indigenous entertainers, with an illustrious career spanning music, theatre, dance, film, television and children’s entertainment. She has won multiple ARIA and Deadly awards and is renowned for her hit songs My Island Home, Party and Sunshine On A Rainy Day. Christine knows what it takes to be successful in the music industry.

"With an extensive career in radio and TV journalism and the arts, Rhoda Roberts is currently the Artistic Director of the Dreaming Festival, a highly regarded international festival of Indigenous art and culture.

“In 2009, Rhoda was the first woman to be appointed as Creative Director of Sydney's New Years Eve celebrations. Her passion for maintaining and showcasing Indigenous culture together with her diverse experience in many areas of the arts and media brings a valuable perspective to assessing Breakthrough applicants.

"Rob Collins has wide-ranging experience in music and Indigenous projects. He is the national Indigenous representative for APRA-AMCOS which represents Australasian music creators. Rob’s practical experience in the industry will bring a strong industry perspective to the panel."

Breakthrough is a national Cultural Ministers Council pilot project.

Applications must be received by 11 May 2009. Application forms and details are available at 

Commonwealth of Australia