2020 sidney myer performing arts awards

Celebrating the nation’s creative leaders and recognising the role that art and artists play in affirming our sense of self, our national identity and our community spirit could not be more important than it is at this moment. 

Andrew Myer AM, Chairman, Sidney Myer Fund has announced the winners of the 2020 Sidney Myer Performing Arts Awards.  

The 2020 Awards have been expanded from the usual three (individual, facilitator and group) to eight Awards (including at least one in each Australian state and territory – three individuals, three groups and two facilitators).

The Awards celebrate excellence in the performing arts and provide direct financial support to artists and companies across the country. In this way, the Awards and the Sidney Myer Fund are very much fundamental to the cultural life of Australia.

“The pandemic has been devastating for artists and everyone working in arts and culture in Australia. In light of that, the Sidney Myer Fund acted decisively to rethink how we present the Awards. Instead of Awarding the usual three annual prizes – the Group Award, the Individual Award and the Facilitator’s Prize – we elected to support eight prizes of $25,000 across the whole country, to celebrate the winners’ achievements and to recognise the role they play in affirming our country’s sense of self. We know this will make a difference both to individual artists and companies and are delighted that we are able to support Australia’s cultural life at this difficult time for many.”

The Award recipients are: Metro Arts (Multi-Arts, Qld), Kylie Bracknell (Theatre, WA), Sally Chance (Dance, SA), Second Echo Ensemble (Dance, Tas), Andrew Ford (Music, NSW), Robin Fox (Music, Vic), Sean Pardy (Theatre, NT) and The Street Theatre (Multi-Arts, ACT). 

Each of the winners has also created a short video to speak of their work and the importance to them and the arts industry at large of these Awards. See here, vimeo.com/showcase/8310388.

The Trustees of the Sidney Myer Foundation believe that real achievement should be recognised and rewarded. It has awarded over $4 million in the Awards’ 38 years.

The national Awards are determined by a Judging Committee that this year was constituted by: Christine Anthoney, Fraser Corfield, Shelagh Magadza, Fiona Maxwell and Brian Ritchie. The Committee is chaired by Andrew Myer, AM (Chairman, Sidney Myer Fund) who does not vote.

The Judging Committee recognises past achievements but also gives consideration to the potential of an individual or group to continue their contribution to Australian society through the performing arts.

The Sidney Myer Performing Arts Awards were established in 1984 by the Trustees of the Sidney Myer Fund to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the death of Sidney Myer, a passionate advocate and great friend to the arts.