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23% Mentorships awarded to 16 music creators

Media Published Monday 24 June 2024
Top L-R: Allegra Neve, Tim Blunt, Issy Grist, KELLY BROUHAHA 2nd row L-R: Lauren Vale, Lily Richardson, Maia Toakley, Nat Vazer 3rd row L-R: RAYHAB, Ruby Archer, Sheanna Parker Russon, SOLCHLD Bottom row L-R: SOPHIYA, Victoria Pham, Yoshi, Sophie McComish

Victoria Pham, Allegra Neve, Maia Toakley, SOLCHLD, Ruby Archer and KELLY BROUHAHA among the mentees

Mentorships to address gender disparity in APRA AMCOS membership

Now in its sixth round, mentees receive guidance and funding

Sixteen songwriters and composers have been selected for APRA AMCOS' 23% Mentorship program, an initiative now in its sixth year that aims to support women, non-binary and gender-diverse music creators by providing professional guidance and funding assistance toward their work.

Spanning a range of genres, specialties and career stages, the 2024 class of mentees includes 2023 Art Music Fund composer Victoria Pham, past Josh Pyke Partnership winner Allegra Neve, CLEWS' Lily Richardson, Body Type's Sophie McComish, underground artist Yoshi and many more. Mentorships will be conducted over a three-month period, with each mentee receiving $3,000.

From Afro-Carribean/ Arrernte artist SOLCHLD: “This mentorship is important to me because it brings support, confidence and strategy to my upcoming projects and releases that I otherwise wouldn't have.” SOLCHILD will be mentored by Offbeat Collective’s Jannah Beth.

Sydney-based Maia Toakley infuses her band's sound with a powerful singer-songwriter style. In the last twelve months they have played packed-out headline shows, a debut tour, and opened for Maple Glider, Sons Of The East, Adam Newling and Kingswood. Maia is working on her second EP and will be mentored by artist manager Jade Nazareth of OneLouder.

Asked why mentoring is important, Maia said, "I mean we saw the completely male-dominated lineup of winners at the 2024 Apra Music Awards, which confirmed that clearly females and non-binary folks are not receiving the same opportunities as men in this industry! It’s also super powerful for women to be working together, which is something particularly unique about this mentorship."

The program, formerly known as the Women in Music Mentorship, comes with a new name based on the percentage of the organisation’s members who identify as other than male, and addresses the disparity by assisting music creators at a crucial career point.

“Embarking on a music career is brave – but it comes with a unique set of challenges and can at times feel isolating. The 23% Mentorship aims to give women, non-binary and gender-diverse music creators individualised support to help them reach their goals," said Karen Don, Head of Membership, APRA AMCOS.

In 2017, APRA AMCOS released research that identified the pathways and barriers for women working in music. This led to a commitment to provide support this underrepresented segment of music creators through the development of programs to effect immediate and sustainable gender participation and equitable financial success.

The mentorship program is a key component of the commitment, and since 2018 has supported 84 member mentees, including Telenova’s Angeline Armstrong, Nardean, Annie Hamilton, LOUV, Eliza Hull, dameeeela, BVT and this year's successful applicants.

Mentees and mentors: