CMAA announces junior academy class of 2017

THE Country Music Association of Australia will welcome another 24 students to its Junior Academy of Country Music in Tamworth in July.

The 24 students will travel from as far away as Western Australia and as close as Loomberah with Tamworth local, Harriet Oates attending.

Hailing from five Australian states, 13 hail from NSW, seven from Queensland, two from Victoria and one each from South Australia and Western Australia with 20 females and four males in total.

The students range in age from 12-17 and five are attending the singer-songwriter’s course on scholarships and there are three instrumental course students.

2016 CMAA Junior Academy of Country Music students and tutors. Photo: Northern Daily Leader

The tutors for the eight-day intensive course are artists David Carter, Jayne Denham, and Ashleigh Dallas for the singer-songwriter course, and Simon Johnson for the instrumental course with Lyn Bowtell returning as director. Musicians Liam Kennedy-Clark, Michael Cole and Ali Foster will assist with the band.

“We have world-class tutors, musicians and songwriters leading the course, which is the only one of its kind,” CMAA Academy of Country Music general manager Roger Corbett said.

“All the academy staff members are excited to welcome these 24 talented students to Tamworth for the intensive course and love seeing the growth of their stage craft and songwriting over the eight days. The CMAA believes one of its most important duties in the music industry is to nurture and grow new country music talent to ensure the industry retains its high standards.”

Parents or guardians accompany many students and they participate in a comprehensive business course focused on managing their talented child’s burgeoning career. The tutors focus on nurturing the students’ different styles within the broad definition of country music.

The students will soak up tuition covering many aspects of country music including performance, songwriting, musicianship, working in a group, and harmony singing. There are opportunities to co-write with other students and professional songwriters, network with professional artists and get a first-class foundation course in country music.

The course concludes with the opportunity to demonstrate what they’ve learned with a graduation concert open to the public.

The value of the CMAA Academy of Country Music junior and senior courses is currently being seen by a national audience with five students and one tutor auditioning for television talent show, The Voice, this season and all making positive impressions on the judges and viewing public.

The 2017 junior course runs from July 1-9 in Tamworth in the lead-up to the Hats Off to Country festival.

The students are:
* Madi Colville, Moama NSW – Laura & Vanessa Byrnes Scholarship
* Ella Hebberman, Jamestown SA – SA Mid North Coast Scholarship
* Kasey Kilsby, Andergrove Qld – Pioneer Valley CM Festival Scholarship
* Felicity Kircher, Tingalpa Qld – RNA Ekka Troy Cassar Daley Scholarship
* Teagan Smith, Mareeba Qld – Far North Qld CM Festival Scholarship
* Maxine Baker, Leichhardt NSW
* Isabella Burnup, Airlie Beach Qld
* Billie-Rose Copeland, Charters Towers Qld
* Shelby Grace, Rose Valley NSW
* Elyssa Hawkins, Rankin Park NSW
* Chloe Heyman, East Corrimal NSW
* Justess Jones, Weston NSW
* Matilda Rose Lawler, Bredbo NSW
* Kora Naughton, Albion Park NSW
* Harriet Oates, Loomberah NSW
* Lucy Parle, Lisarow NSW
* Sally Pottinger, Serpentine WA
* Chelsea Rollings, Ashtonfield NSW
* Eliza Spalding, West Wodonga Vic
* Georgie Taylor, Thornlands Qld
* Trinity Woodhouse, Abernethy NSW
* Jack Carnaby, Waterview Heights NSW – Instrumental Course
* Dan Henwood, Wangaratta Vic – Instrumental Course
* Leyon Milner, Mackay Qld – Instrumental Course

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