John Hunt, Elizabeth Wallfisch, Julie Haskell, Rosanne Hunt & Marianne Hunt
(Left to right) John Hunt, Elizabeth Wallfisch, Julie Haskell, Rosanne Hunt & Marianne Hunt

If you attended our AYO National Music Camp concerts this year you might have seen our percussionists playing some railway tracks alongside the timpani and triangle. AYO Alumnus Andrew Howes searched high and low for railway tracks of just the right pitch for his extraordinary composition Ichiros – a large-scale orchestral work featuring some impressive percussion parts – which premiered at AYO National Music Camp to unanimous audience acclaim.

This unique performance wouldn’t have been possible without one of AYO’s many champions: the Silo Collective. Founded by Leta Keens, the Silo Collective comprises a group of music-loving individuals, including AYO Alumni, who each contribute $500 to commission new music. Thanks to the Silo Collective, Australia can now boast a range of exciting original works by composers such as Andrew and 20-year-old Philip Jameson, whose compositions for AYO led to another commission from Musica Viva.

Administering concerts is hard work, and AYO Alumna Rosanne Hunt has put in countless hours to organise the Kenneth Hunt Memorial Fund concerts in support of NMC. The Hunt family have been part of the AYO community since the 1950s when Kenneth and Marianne Hunt were NMC tutors and dormitory hosts; in 2003 the family established the fund to honour Kenneth’s contribution to musical development in Australia. This year’s concert raised several thousand dollars to give young musicians the life-changing opportunity to take part in next year’s AYO National Music Camp.

Plus, every year we are overwhelmed by the generosity of our community who support us through programs including Scholarships, the International Tour Fund and our Annual Appeal. Not to mention volunteers who give hours of their time and parents who give their children the chance to participate.

This year’s concert raised several thousand dollars to give young musicians the life changing opportunity to take part in next year’s AYO National Music Camp.

We’d like to take this opportunity to thank our amazing supporters. As participant Sam Nolan (bass trombone) says: ‘Without your help these incredible programs wouldn’t exist”.