Musica Viva has announced the participants in its 2018-2019 FutureMakers program. Pianist Aura Go and percussionist Matthias Schack-Arnott will follow the inaugural FutureMakers – Arcadia Winds – to become the second stream of musicians to go through the two-year program. Over the course of the program, the participants will develop a music-centred project that will be ready for premiere and touring in the season after they leave.

Pianist and conductor Aura Go has studied at the Victorian College of the Arts, Australian National Academy of Music, Yale and is currently a doctoral candidate at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki. “For the last nine years, I’ve been living overseas, first in the USA, and currently in Finland,” she said. “FutureMakers offers me an extraordinary chance to build a professional life in my home country, while maintaining an active performance schedule in Europe. I’m passionate about education, about contemporary music, about becoming an advocate for an artform I love, both with my work, and as a writer and spokesperson.”

Aura Go, FutureMakers, Musica VivaPianist Aura Go. Photo © Keith Saunders

Aura Go has performed with most of the major Australian orchestras – she was soloist in the Australian premieres of Rautavaara’s First and Second Piano Concertos with the Adelaide and Melbourne Symphony Orchestras in the early 2000s – and has also worked with the Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney and Queensland Symphony Orchestras and Orchestra Victoria as part of Symphony Australia’s Conductor Development Program. An passionate advocate of new music, Go was conductor and pianist for the premiere of Kate Neal’s Semaphore, which was awarded Performance of the Year at the 2016 Art Music Awards (Semaphore also won Instrumental Work of the Year).

Matthias Schack-Arnott, FutureMakers, Musica VivaPercussionist Matthias Schack-Arnott. Photo © Keith Saunders

Melbourne-based percussionist Matthias Schack-Arnott is Associate Artist with Speak Percussion and his work often features new instruments or instrumental set-ups (such as his 2016 work for Speak Percussion Anicca). “FutureMakers offers the precious commodities of resources, time and space to spend two years creating an ambitious new work,” Schack-Arnott said. “It will also give me access to extraordinary people: artists, thinkers, entrepreneurs, brilliant minds of all types, giving me the opportunity to create something career defining that will set the tone and scale of my work for the next chapter of my professional life.”

Schack-Arnott won the Melbourne Prize for Music Development in 2016, while Speak Percussion won the Award for Excellence by an Organisation at the 2017 Art Music Awards for its 2016 program and contribution to Australian Music. As a guest artist Schack-Arnott has appeared with the the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Malaysia Philharmonic Orchestra, Exo-Tech, ELISION, Australian Art Orchestra, Synergy, Chamber Made Opera and Nick Tsiavos Ensemble.

Both Go and Schack-Arnott have also been selected to represent Australia at the 2018 Classical:NEXT conference in Rotterdam as this year’s Classical:NEXT fellows.

“We’re so excited to be working with Aura and Matthias, alongside our team of brilliant, generous mentors and partners,” said Genevieve Lacey, the Artistic Director of the FutureMakers program, who selected the artists after extensive consultation with industry peers. “Aura and Matthias are exceptionally courageous and talented artists. Over the next two years, they will each create a career- defining new performance work, and in doing so, make a future for themselves, for audiences, and for our art form.”