Ravenshoe Strikes A Winning Chord With Yamaha's Great Start Grant

Today a regional Far North Queensland school, Ravenshoe State School P-12, has been announced as the winner of this year’s Yamaha Music Australia’s Great Start Grant. The school will be awarded with almost $60,000 worth of musical instruments, three days of specialised music training for students and teachers and a launch concert with internationally acclaimed composer, musician and comedian, Tim Minchin.

Ravenshoe State School P-12 Principal, Andrea Manley, almost jumped out of her seat when she received the news that the school had won the Great Start Grant.

“Our teachers and students are passionate about music and we are over the moon that Yamaha Music Australia is helping us strengthen our band program. Ravenshoe State School P-12 strives to offer the best possible learning opportunities for its students, and we are so grateful to the community who have shown us so much support to help us win the Great Start Grant,” said Andrea.

A nationwide initiative, the Yamaha Great Start Grant gives an Australian school a helping hand to get their music program off the ground, and help foster positive and social connections within local communities. Now in its third year, the Great Start Grant continues to drive and promote quality music education within the school curriculum.

Yamaha Assistant Marketing Manager, Mat Taylor was delighted to see so many schools across Australia battle it out to win the Great Start grant this year.

“We have been ecstatic to see so many talented schools apply for the Great Start Grant this year. Our esteemed judging panel seeks to find one school that is passionate about engaging young people in music making, and providing an impactful music program that inspires and motivates students.”

“Ravenshoe is a wonderful little community from the Tablelands in Far North Queensland and they proved to have a real thirst and passion for band education. We are really excited to have our Yamaha Education Specialist spend time at the school and assist the teachers and students on putting together a robust music program,” said Taylor.

As the winner of the Yamaha Great Start Grant, Ravenshoe State School P-12 will receive:

  • $58,000 worth of Yamaha instruments — equivalent to 32 brand new Yamaha band instruments
  • Training from Dr Rob McWilliams —Yamaha’s Education Specialist
  • A launch concert at the winning school from Tim Minchin

In addition, three running up schools have been awarded $2,000 to help bolster their music programs. The schools included Nuriootpa Primary School (SA), Norfolk Island Central School (NI) and Bannockburn P-12 College (VIC).

The judging panel for the Great Start Grant 2019 included Jaclyn Williams, Yamaha Brand Manager; Mat Taylor, Asst. Marketing Manager; Cameron Tait, Marketing Manager; Dr Rob McWilliams, Education Outreach Clinician; and Richard Snape, member of the Australian Music Association Executive Committee.

For further information on the competition, please visit