By - CTL
February 14, 2019

As the school year begins and the summer holidays draw to a close, parents become more involved in their child’s education. Yamaha Music Australia is giving back to kids with the launch of their annual Great Start Grant – a nationwide initiative that will see one school be awarded almost $60,000 worth of musical instruments, 3 days of specialised music training for students and teachers and a launch concert with internationally acclaimed composer, musician and comedian, Tim Minchin.

Now in its third year, the Great Start Grant will be searching for an Australian school with a passion and drive to promote quality music education but need a helping hand to get their music programs off the ground. With group music events proven to boost happiness levels, the Great Start Grant provides the opportunity to foster positivity and social connections within school communities.

Yamaha Band and Orchestral Asst. Marketing Manager Mat Taylor is excited to see schools from across Australia register and get involved in the program.

“The Great Start Grant supports both Yamaha’s own education advocacy program ‘Off to a Great Start’ and the Australian Music Association’s national ambition to engage more young people in music making. Each year we search for a school that is enthusiastic about providing an impactful music program that inspires and motivates students.”

“Our previous grant winners have gone on to create amazing learning opportunities for students. In partnership with the Australian Music Association, Yamaha continues to find new ways to engage local schools and assist them with developing innovative music programs for kids,” says Mat.

“When programs such as Off to a Great Start are initiated by member companies like Yamaha Music Australia, it provides young people with the opportunity to have music as part of their education,” added Rob Walker, Executive Officer of the Australian Music Association. “In doing so, a significant step is taken toward creating the music makers of tomorrow.”

The winner of the Great Start Grant will receive:

  • $58,000 worth of Yamaha instruments — equivalent to 32 brand new Yamaha band instruments (with a further 2 schools receiving instruments worth over $1000)
  • Training from Dr Rob McWilliams —Yamaha’s Education Specialist
  • A launch concert at the winning school from Tim Minchin

Schools wishing to apply must complete the online application. Applications include submitting letters from the school principal, a relevant, full-time teacher and a parent whose child is currently attending the school. For full details please visit

Two finalists will also be selected and assessed by a panel featuring: Jaclyn Williams, Yamaha Brand Manager; Mat Taylor, Band and Orchestral Asst. Marketing Manager; Cameron Tait, Marketing Manager – Traditional Instruments; Dr. Rob McWilliams, Education Outreach Clinician; and Richard Snape, member of the Australian Music Association Executive Committee.

Applications close 16 March 2019. For full details and terms and conditions please visit

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