Yamaha Awards Apollo Bay P-12 College $90,000 Music Grant

Yamaha Music Australia has announced Apollo Bay P-12 College as the winner of the inaugural national Great Start Giveaway – an initiative which sees the winning school awarded a prize package that will revolutionise its music curriculum.

Comprising of $90,000 worth of Yamaha instruments, three days of professional training from Dr Rob McWilliams, Australia’s leading band expert and Yamaha’s Education Outreach Clinician, and a launch event with Guy Sebastian– the prize pool will kick start Apollo Bay P-12’s College’s music programme.

Over 90 schools applied for the grant by submitting letters of support for a music program from principals, teachers and parents. “Over the course of the two months, we received some incredible nominations from schools from all four corners of Australia,” explained Dr McWilliams, “And while we were all hugely impressed by every single submission, the judging panel believed Apollo Bay P-12 students would benefit most from the prize fund.”

The launch event was held on Wednesday 3rd May at Apollo Bay P-12 College’s multi-purpose hall, Yamaha presented a concert with Australian pop sensation Guy Sebastian for 600 students, teachers, families, and members of the local community. It was a high-energy and emotive musical performance which highlighted the enjoyment this college will get from its new and re-imagined music program.

Principal Tiffany Holt sees this as a transformative moment for the school: “We are lucky enough to be home to a pool of eager and talented musicians and winning the Great Start Giveaway has enabled us to put those students centre stage and develop their skills. But this is about more than just a one-off performance. The valuable training from Yamaha and Dr McWilliams and these incredible new instruments will transform our vison of a far-reaching music programme into reality, fostering a love and uptake of the Arts amongst Apollo Bay P-12 students.”

In addition to the major giveaway, Yamaha also awarded $10,000 worth of prizes to: Wangaratta High School in Victoria; Bellbird Park State Secondary College in Queensland; William Bayldon Public School in Toormina, News South Wales, and St Brigid’s Catholic School in Evanston, South Australia.