The NSW-based composer with receive the $30,000 award established to honour the late composer’s legacy.

The legacy of Peter Sculthorpe AO OBE, arguably Australia’s most cherished and distinguished composer who sadly passed away last year aged 85, is so significant it’s difficult to quantify. He has been a titanically influential figure in Australian music for over four decades, not just through his own substantial portfolio of compositions, but also through his work as a teacher and mentor to many of Australia’s greatest composers. Sculthorpe continues to shape the next generation of gifted Australian music makers as the inaugural beneficiary of the Peter Sculthorpe Fellowship was announced earlier this week by the University of Sydney, Arts NSW and the trustees of the Sculthorpe estate.

Peter Sculthorpe AO OBE

Composer Peggy Polias, an alumna of the University of Sydney and the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, will receive the $30,000 dollar bursary, established to honour the enormous contribution of the late composer to the musical vibrancy of Australia. Polias, whose music has been performed across Australia by ensembles including Kammerkland, Ku-Ring Gai Philharmonic, Halcyon and Chronology Arts, has also worked at the Australian Music Centre for several years and in addition to her own compositions she also prepares scores and parts for some of the country’s most notable composers.

Sculthorpe Fellowship Trustee and Associate Dean of the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Professor Anne Boyd AM – who is a celebrated composer herself – shared her pride at being able to continue Sculthorpe’s contribution to Australian music through the new award. “Peter Sculthorpe was instrumental in shaping a distinctive Australian musical identity. He brought the mysterious spirit of our continent to life, not only through his incredible body of work, but also through the generations of students and teachers he mentored over more than 40 years,” she said.