Published On: 5 August 2022Categories: Latest

It’s the dawn of a new era. Read about this and more in our latest edition of WHAT’S THE SCORE?


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Welcome from the President 

Dear Fellow Composers,

Well, it’s the dawn of a new era. The election of a new government offers renewed hope for legislation to mandate more investment in producing Australian content across the streaming services and subscription TV.

Earlier this month the AGSC and APRA made a detailed submission in response to the “Streaming Services and Investment Scheme Discussion Paper.” One of the focuses was calling for swift introduction of a 20% Australian commissioned content expenditure requirement on global streaming businesses, with specific protections for terms of trade safeguards. This submission will be publicly available soon, and we will share it at that time. Keep your eyes out!

The Guild also looks forward to the Arts having a dedicated ministry and will continue to lobby the new government for greater intellectual property protection for the creative industries. We also look forward to working together with all the screen guilds as well as the Screen Producers Association to finally achieve many of the objectives that have been stymied in the past decade.

This last quarter has been a busy one as usual for the Guild with the release of the Credit Maker scheme in conjunction with the Screen Australia which gives a huge opportunity to elevate female screen composers. Furthermore, the NATSIMO/AGSC Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Screen Composer Intensive is in full swing, giving our first participant, Rhyan Clapham (aka Dobby), hands on experience around the many aspects of screen composition and production. Rhyan has spent time with various mentors through the partnership program with Church Street Studios, Jigsaw Music, SONAR, and AFTRS, along with one-on-one mentorship with Amanda Brown, and is currently finishing off his own score recording and mix at AFTRS. 

I hope you enjoy our latest newsletter jam packed with events, readings and opportunities. As always please feel free get in touch if you have any enquires. 

Antony Partos




Credit Maker is a high calibre new initiative that will support 12 female-identifying practitioners across directing, cinematography and composing to attain a career defining credit on a scripted production; to elevate their career trajectory; and, to bring change in female Head of Department (HoD) representation in the sector.

Credit Maker is supported by Screen Australia’s Gender Matters umbrella in partnership with the Australian Directors Guild, the Australian Cinematographers Society and the Australian Guild of Screen Composers. Gender Matters is the umbrella name of Screen Australia’s efforts to address the under-utilisation of female talent in key creative roles in the Australian screen industry.

We are calling out to female composers who wish to register interest (as placees), and composers (any gender) who are interested in being supervising composers

Screen Australia has made available up to $16,000 for each of the placements, and up to $7,500 for supervising composers, both of which would cover an 8 week placement. 

Please register interest as a placee on our website if you wish to participate as a placee composer. There will be a register of interested placee composers that will be made available to Production Companies and participating supervising composers. 

We also encourage interested supervising composers to register interest as a supervising composer as they will be provided with the names of the potential placee composers on the Register as well as receiving information and guidance as to how to negotiate the placement. 

Registering interest is to give us the opportunity to identify eligible composers, and to provide information and guidance as to the availability of projects, productions, and supervising composers for placement. 

This is a unique opportunity, and we encourage you to take hold of it! Further general information can be found on our website, so please keep checking for updates. 



Support Act recently unveiled the findings of its first ever Mental Health and Wellbeing in Music and Live Performing Arts survey, and the results are a stark wake up call to the state of mental health in our industry. 

The results were unveiled at the charity’s inaugural Head First music industry conference discussing mental health and wellbeing @FactoryTheatre, Sydney. View the full results here.



Back in March, our colleagues over the ditch in ran the New Zealand Television Awards and we would like to congratulate:

  • Tom McLeod for winning Images & Sound Best Original Score for his work on the documentary and podcast series “Fight For The Wild”.
  • Rhian Sheehan and Karl Steven for Best Contribution to a Soundtrack for the television series “The Sounds”.



AGSC President Antony Partos’ Q1 Industrial Relations Update

The Guild has supported the latest APRA submission to the Government regarding the Income Tax Assessment Assessment (Digital Games Tax Offset) Bill 2021: Measure for Consultation.

The main points the AGSC supported in the submission was the lowering of the rebate threshold that is currently set at $500,000 and supporting the inclusion of Australian copyrighted material as a line item that should also be included as a rebate. 

The submission also canvassed the trend in gaming music away from buyout deals and towards acknowledging IP and reiterated the importance of retaining IP in Australia. 

The AGSC has also recently worked with APRA and the Combined Guilds on the response to the latest Green Paper discussion into Streaming Services. The submission will be available to read soon, and we will circulate it at that time.

It is frustrating that the Government so far has proceeded to ignore all industry recommendations into creating some base level of mandatory regulation for streaming services to create Australian content.  

The latest paper from the Government is recommending a voluntary 5% of content from streaming services’ Australian derived income to be funneled into making Australian content with the ultimate discretion lying with the Arts Minister as to whether they should entice streaming services to make any further content should they not meet this low threshold. 

The Combined Guilds position remains unchanged. We support the swift introduction of a 20% Australian commissioned content expenditure requirement on global technology streaming businesses. 

The Combined Guilds suggest that the proposed scheme in the Discussion Paper is weak and creates uncertainty and only serves to maintain an inadequate status quo. 

The Combined Guilds is also concerned about the rise in prominence of streamers giving rise to a changed dynamic in the bargaining power between Australian content producers and global streaming business. There is concern about IP creators increasingly expected to sign away rights and that “terms of trade’ are being eroded. 

There is concern that this is not addressed in the discussion paper. 

There is alarm about the degree of Ministerial discretion where Australian content would become a matter for the uncertain preferences of future Ministers who will be subject to intense lobbying from large commercial corporations and that further delay in regulation at this late stage is damaging to the industry. 

The Combined Guilds is also advocating for protections for critical genres of drama and children’s content and opposes the proposed halving of the subscription television Australian drama obligation to 5%. 

It has been a very frustrating outcome that despite the constant request for submissions into our industry, that no recommendations seem to be acknowledged let alone adopted and so our fight continues…..

Antony Partos


Sydney Film Festival + Craft Panel

The wait is over! Sydney Film Festival’s full program is now here! Explore over 200+ films from June 8-19, with cinema from around the world sure to captivate, delight and shock. Tickets are available to book now.

We’re also delighted to share that our president Antony Partos will be taking part in the Craft in Focus Panel alongside representatives from our guild network. Registration is free, so don’t miss the opportunity to join a lively conversation moderated by AFTRS CEO Dr. Nell Greenwood on “Australian Cinema – the good, the bad and the ugly”.

The Films of Frederick Wiseman

In partnership with ACMI and NSFA, The Sydney Film Festival will present a retrospective featuring work by the acclaimed veteran American filmmaker Frederick Wiseman – It Takes Time: Ten Films by Frederick Wiseman from the 11 – 31 June.

The retrospective will screen feature works from Wiseman spanning the 60’s through to his latest 2020 release in:

  • Sydney at Sydney Film Festival (11-31 June)
  • Melbourne at ACMI (22 May – 25 Sept)
  • Canberra at NSFA (12 June – 23 Oct)

Save the date for a picnic!

Mark your calendars! Our Health & Wellbeing Committee is planning to hold two picnics on the 13 July 2022: one in NSW, and one in VIC. These picnics will probably be a small drive from the major cities.

Scoring Competition

Registration for the Lei Cine Scoring Project Film Scoring Competition is now open. This is an opportunity to get involved with the Chinese film scoring industry. You can register here before 1 July. The submission deadline is 7 July 2022.



The Australian Guild of Screen Composers and the Alliance for Women Film Composers invite you to hear from composers Nami Melumad and Jesi Nelson. Please join us for a very special look inside the universe of sci-fi composition. Composer bios can also be found below.

The event will take place on Zoom. Please note the correct date and time based on your timezone: Thursday 16 June at 7pm PDT and 10pm EDT, and Friday 17 June 2022 at 12pm AEST.

Register for this event now! There is no cost, but you will need to register to attend, in order to be provided with the Zoom details.

Email us at for all enquiries.

NAMI MELUMAD has composed scores for numerous films and tv series, most notably “Star Trek: Strange New Worlds” and “Star Trek: Prodigy” (Paramount+), “The Woman in the House Across the Street From the Girl in the Window”(Netflix), “An American Pickle” (HBO Max), “Far From the Tree” (Disney+) and more. Nominated for Breakthrough Composer of the Year by the International Film Music Critics Association, Nami won the IFMCA Award for Best Original Score: Video Game for “Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond”, and the BMI Award for the Oscar® winning documentary short, “Colette” in 2020. 

An alumna of the ASCAP Film-Scoring Workshop, Nami graduated from the Scoring for Motion Pictures and TV program at the University of Southern California. She holds a B.A. in multi-style composition from the Jerusalem Academy of Music, where she was admitted directly to her sophomore year. She is a board member of the Alliance for Women Film Composers. Originally from Israel, Nami lives in Los Angeles and enjoys hiking and singing nights with friends. She plays flute, piano, and guitar.

JESI NELSON is a Korean born, Wisconsin raised, Los Angeles based composer for film & media. Her most recent works include Lucasfilm’s Star Wars “Biomes” and “Vehicle Flythroughs” on Disney+, where Jesi became the first female and BIPOC lead composer on a Star Wars project. She also co-scored Discovery’s “Liberation Heroes: The Last Eyewitness” and Playmobil’s animated series “Novelmore”. Her past works comprise of the feature film “Jinn”, short films “Aurinko in Adagio” and “Shoebox”, and writing additional music for “DOTA Dragon’s Blood” (she also scored the trailers for season one), EMMY nominated “Lego Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures”, and “Lego Ninjago: Masters of Spinjitzu”, amongst a wide variety of other films and tv series.  

She is an alumna of the highly competitive Sundance Film Music & Sound Design Lab (2017) held at Skywalker Ranch, and was the recipient of the Sundance Institute and Time Warner Foundation grant, where 11 diverse independent artists were chosen from different Sundance labs, in its continued efforts to discover and support independent artists from diverse backgrounds.

Register now for Star Scores: Composers of Sci Fi


That’s Mike on the left as a Zombie, with director Kiah Roache-Turner on the set of Wyrmwood: Apocalypse

Thank you so much to Mike Lira for this amazing edition of WTS’s 20 questions!

1. My name is Michael Lira.

2. I grew up in the musical era of John Zorn’s Naked City, John Williams and The Cramps.

3. I work from the Sunshine Coast and remote studios.

4. Professionally, I’m also an Olfactometrist (1998-1999)?

5. I studied music at The Australian Institute Of Music and qualified with zip.

6. The instrument I’m best at is Bass and piano.

7. I also play Saxes, clarinets, guitars, bits of brass and strings.

8. I’m best known for my score(s) for Wyrmwood franchise? I don’t know, maybe Interceptor in a few weeks?

9. A score I’m proud of but received little recognition is Turtle Odyssey. Check out this cue! (Please!)

10. The score I wish I wrote is… there’s no scores I wish I wrote because you really have to be careful what you wish for. The space time repercussions could be savage. However, recently I’ve been chatting with the excellent Sydney based composer Matthew Chin (who also orchestrates with Jigsaw and has worked on lots of my scores) and happen to have put a list of some real inspiring formative influences, It’s a list of 10, he sent me a list of about 187. Film score wise, excluding the Obvious John Williams, Morricone, Bernard Herrmann, Danny Elfman Franz Waxman  and Delia Derbyshire….

11. If I wasn’t me, the composer I’d love to be is too dangerous a question (space time warping). There’s many that I greatly admire, mostly in the list above.

12. The person(s) and/or institution that helped me get to where I am now is (as a soundtrack composer) Jay Katz, Brendan Young and Nick Donkin because they got me onto my first jobs, and it’s all about getting the first jobs! Nice Donkin’s very whacky TVC
and Brendan young both led on to continual work.

13. If I wasn’t a screen composer I’d probably be a maker of videos of cats in costumes recreating famous movie scenes because cats.

14. The thing I love about my job is working with orchestras. orchestrators and mixers.

15. The things I dislike about my job are (in some cases) bad contracts, unrealistic expectations with low budgets, the ever increasing norms to take publishing.

16. My favourite piece of technology is the internet because cats.

17. When I’m not composing, I like to learn instruments and study harmony.

18. A day wouldn’t be complete without chocolate.

19. The last concert I went to was Meow Meow. My three word review would be International Tingling Sensation

20. A message to my fellow composers would be….  It would be fun to chat more, it’s pretty isolated in these times. feel free to reach out! I hope everyone is well.



Australian contemporary classical and film composer, Sid Acharya is celebrating the release of his new album “Tales of Time”, on the 10th of June, with two singles releasing 27th May and 3rd June.

“Tales of Time” is a contemporary classical album weaving ambient electronica elements with soulful felt piano and cello. Telling a story of the cyclic nature of life, the comings and goings of love and loss, the album is Sid’s next full-length work following his success with prior album “Stories from the Sky”, which gained millions of streams across platforms. “I’ve always felt, that there is a power in instrumental and classical music. The absence of lyrics allows a listener to fill the silences with their own thoughts, and the music becomes a type of therapy.”

In addition to this release, the soundtrack album for Australian feature film “Beat”, composed by Sid, will be releasing late July, alongside the distribution of the film in the United States to Apple Movies and Amazon Prime. The Australian film celebrated its‘ premiere earlier this year at Event Cinemas.

You can follow Sid’s releases on Instagram at @sid__acharya, or follow him on streaming platforms.


Wirripang publishers have recently published Annie Burbank’s work “Prelude Recomposed No. 1” which is a reworking of JS Bach’s Prelude no.6 from 48 Preludes and Fugues Book 1. Written for piano and cello, a performance of the work is here performed by Annie Burbank and Me-Lee Hay, or go here for the sheet music.


I’ve been working with filmmakers John Hughes and Tom Zubrycki on their feature documentary about the revolutionary film co-ops of the late 1960’s and 1970’s (in Melbourne & Sydney). This is an incredibly important document of a pivotal and developmental period in Australia’s film history and I think it is especially relevant for emerging filmmakers to see now. Scored for a small ensemble of strings, piano and woodwinds, featuring bass clarinet, plus analogue synths and rhythm section. It will be premiering at MIFF in August, supported through the Premiere Fund.

Meanwhile, after too long a period of not travelling, I’m off to Europe for a month once I deliver this film 🙂 

Ci vediamo a pui tardi!


Sydney Theatre Company’s White Pearl  is a dark and at times disturbing satire written by Achulia Felicia King (who is now writing for HBO and international theatres) about  the inter-asian relationship of an almost all female cast set within the toxic corporate world of a whitening cream start up amongst a backdrop of cancel culture. It has been touring nationally, sporadically over approximately 6 months, in and out of Covid. Here is an insight into the composing process along with co-composer Michael Toisuto in STC’s magazine. Listen to a playlist of some of my transition music tracks and underscore here.


In recent news Fiona Hill is one of four finalists in the Stelvio Cipriani International Composition Competition for Film Music. The competition fielded over 200 entries globally with the winner being announced on June 15th. Fiona has a busy couple of months ahead with projects for the Sydney Children’s Choir, the Sydney Conservatorium of Music String Orchestra and a Ukaria residency in the Adelaide Hills. The Sydney Children’s Choir  “Hypnopompia” (or the edge of the unknown) is a new stage production that explores the edge of adulthood and finding a new sense of reality. Opening June 23rd at Chatswood Concourse, book tickets here. The Conservatorium String Orchestra conducted by Roger Benedict, will perform live the score to award winning film by Sue Healey, “Circumstance 2020” in August. Fiona is re-orchestrating the score for live performance – an exciting and fun venture! 


I’ve just released a feature soundtrack for ‘post apocalyptic adventure’ indie film “The Rogue Barrens” which is having it’s premiere cinema screening on May 19th (in Kansas City).  

This soundtrack was super fun to create- main feel was dystopian dark synth style music with references including Hans Zimmer Dune, Daft Punk Tron, The Hunger Games and Hereditary soundtracks.  

If that interests you take a listen on Spotify here.


Following up from his recent APRA Screen Music Award for Best Original Music in a Short Film, Adam has dipped his toe into another beautiful and moody Short Film entitled “Max” directed by Ant McPhail. The guitar driven score features some deeply processed sounds made from an array of Adam’s extensive collection of pedals and toys. The film has been entered into the Toronto & Venice Film Festivals among others, and will be making the usual festival circuit before being able to watch for free. 


I’m currently out touring with Dead Can Dance on their European spring tour, Today finds me in Bucharest, Romania, at an ancient ampitheatre somewhere in the wilds outside of town. Tomorrow, onto Greece. Very much looking forward to getting back to a wintery Melbourne com June, and back in the studio!


‘Mate’ directed by George-Alex Nagle, with an original score by Jai Pyne is playing at Sydney Festival, after taking out the Grand Prix best international film at Clermont-Ferrand earlier this year. The film tracks a down-and-out has-been as he attempts to reconnect with an impressionable teenager over a weekend in Western Sydney. ‘Mate’ is the first Australian film to ever win Grand Prix best international at Clermont-Ferrand. 


Cezary Skubiszewski is a Polish-born Australian film and TV composer whose work has received international acclaim, winning numerous awards, including three AFI/AACTA Awards and the IFMCA (International Film Music Critics) Award for best film music.

Last month, Screenhub shared a wonderful interview with him which can be read here.

The AGSC gratefully acknowledges the support of APRA AMCOS, the City of Sydney and Screenrights.

The AGSC acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the unceded lands and waters on which we create our work and pay respect to their Elders past, present and emerging.







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