Yelian He wins the Australian Cello Awards Competition

We are thrilled to hear that Yelian He, Tait Awardee 2009, has been awarded the inaugural Australian Cello Awards. Congratulations Yelian. Yelian was the recipient of the Allen-Evans Scholarship, the Grand Prize of the inaugural Australian Cello Awards Competition, the Audience Prize as well as the Sydney Symphony concerto prize.

Yelian performs with Yasmin Rowe in their Cello and Piano duo Y2QUARED. Listen to them performing the Beethoven Sonata for Piano and Cello in F here

It is our great pleasure to be able to let you know that Yasmin and I performed at the finals of the inaugural Australian Cello Awards Competition on the night of 30th March 2014. We were incredibly fortunate and privileged to be selected by a jury of eminent Australian musicians as the Grand Prize winner as well as the recipient of the Audience Prize and the Sydney Symphony Orchestra Concerto Prize. (Yelian will be back in Sydney to perform a concerto with the Sydney Symphony in 2015/16)

Needless to say, we’re both over the moon – we both love Australia very much for it’s weather – people – and food. We thought you’d be interested to know as you are an important part of why we were able to achieve this, so thank you very much for your support and we look forward to being able to give you more good news as the time goes by.


Yelian & Yasmin, 2nd April 2014

Three of a kind: Winner Yelian He, left, Ruben Palma and Edward King at the Conservatorium. Photo: Steven Siewert
Three of a kind: Winner Yelian He, left, Ruben Palma and Edward King at the Conservatorium. Photo: Steven Siewert


More here from the Sydney Morning Herald

The website of the Australian Cello Awards

Jewels of the Bel Canto – Elena Xanthoudakis, Catherine Carby, Richard Bonynge, Royal Northern Sinfonia

The Tait Memorial Trust are thrilled to announce the launch of a new recording by Tait Awardee, Elena Xanthoudakis, and the great Australian master of Bel Canto, Richard Bonynge. Released by Signum Records the CD will be officially launched in March 2014 generously supported by the Borletti Buitoni Trust. Please watch the attached video

Elena Xanthoudakis, Soprano - Jewels of the Bel Canto Conducted by Richard Bonynge Catherine Carby, Mezzo Soprano. Royal Northern Sinfonia
Elena Xanthoudakis, Soprano – Jewels of the Bel Canto Conducted by Richard Bonynge
Catherine Carby, Mezzo Soprano. Royal Northern Sinfonia

2008 Tait Prize winner, Elena Xanthoudakis was nominated for a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award in 2011 and is a ‘Borletti-Buitoni Trust artist’. The BBT and Signum Records have come together to present Elena in a solo recital disc of ‘Bel Canto’ arias called ‘Jewels of the Bel Canto’ with the Royal Northern Sinfonia and Maestro Richard Bonynge. Jewels of the Bel Canto’ is for release April 1st 2014 and also features special guest artist, Australian Mezzo-soprano Catherine Carby, as Alisa in Lucia.

The process of making this CD involved Elena coaching with Maestro Bonynge in his home in Switzerland which were also supported by the Tait Memorial Trust.

More info about Elena here

Awards for young musicians

We are delighted to announce that the Awards for Young Musicians annual awards programme for talented young musicians is open for applications. We would be really grateful if this could be shared so this opportunity can reach as many young people as possible. It is a wonderful, inspiring organisation. All contact details below.

The information below is from the Awards for Young Musicians website

Annual Awards Programme

If you are aged between five and seventeen you can apply to our Annual Awards programme. We give awards of between £200 and £2,000, totalling a minimum of £70,000 per year; last year we supported 132 talented young musicians. We help with all the major costs of a young musician’s training, such as lessons, buying an instrument, travel and specialist courses.


Our key criteria

We support instrumentalists making music in any genre, and our key criteria are:
– Financial need (all applications are means-tested)
– Exceptional musical talent and potential

Awards can help with costs including:

  • Buying or hiring a musical instrument
  • Music lessons
  • Weekend music schools
  • Music courses
  • Orchestra fees
  • Travel

Applicants will need to:

  • Show evidence of financial need
  • Have ideally achieved a distinction in your last music exam – or, if you haven’t taken exams, show evidence of this level of ability
  • Be recommended by your music teacher and an organisation, orchestra or group where you play or practise.


How to apply

First of all please read our guidance notes.

Complete the 2014 application form: once you have done this, email it to us.

You also need to send to us some other documents. These are

Your three references, as listed below:
•    Music Teacher
•    Head Teacher
•    Recommending organisation’s form

The HEAD TEACHER reference should be sent with your proof of income to Awards for Young Musicians. The MUSIC TEACHER and RECOMMENDING ORGANISATION completed forms should be sent directly to Awards for Young Musicians.


During this process, we use income thresholds similar to those of the Music and Dance Scheme( Ultimately, however, our adjudication panel makes decisions based on which applicants are most talented and most in need of help.

If you have any questions or need help to complete the form, please call Jane Ordaz Stubbs on 01234 750 738 or email

Download the documents you need here:

The deadline for 2014 applications is Friday 21 March 2014.

For information about other possible funders, please visit FAQs/Funding.

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