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Recent Projects:


Making Connections

In 2019 CMVic partnered with The Living Circle and The Gippsland Singers Network to establish the Making Connections project. It features intercultural arts activities involving creative collaborations between Aboriginal Elders, children, linguistic advisors and musicians. The project uses music to bring people of different cultures and ages together, to deepen environmental awareness and to contribute to the process of creative language revival. The Making Connections project is run in collaboration with The Gippsland Singers Network and received funding from The Bass Coast Shire Council and Destination Philip Island. In 2019, activities involving songs with Aboriginal language were integrated into events on Bunurong/Boon Wurrung Country. Songs sung on Bunurong/Boon Wurrung Country contained language gifted by Traditional Custodian Aunty Fay Stewart-Muir.

More details here.

Coastal Connections

Coastal Connections’ is one of 135 projects to have received funding through the Bass Coast Shire Council Resilience Grants Program COVID 19, announced during the week beginning July 13, 2020. The project is a response to the impact of COVID-related social isolation and hardship in the community. The aim of the ‘Coastal Connections’ project is to support a process of community reconnection, resilience and recovery, bringing people together through a framework of creative engagement and intercultural collaborations. The ‘Coastal Connections’ project is being hosted by the Gippsland Singers Network and its auspicing body, Community Music Victoria (CMVic), both of which have extensive experience in facilitating broad community outreach and being responsive to the social distancing requirements of COVID regulations.

More details here.

Flinders Lane Community Voices

Flinders Lane community voices(FLCV) was an all-abilities choir project open to community groups based at Ross House, and later, during COVID lockdowns run online, including people with disabilities, vulnerable youth and office workers in the Flinders lane precinct and CBD. FLCV was running an accessible, inclusive music program to foster a genuine sense of belonging and connection in the group. This initiative was generously funded by the City of Melbourne. 

More details here

Singing for Inclusion (SINC)

This project is the second phase of creating a professional development curriculum for leaders of socially inclusive and mixed ability singing groups. Continuing from the in-person program developed in phase one, this project will develop new e-learning modules that can support singing leaders in any community across Australia. We will produce two modules containing theory, instructional videos, cases studies and assessment to provide a practical approach to social interaction skills and techniques that make all participants feel comfortable, enhance their sense of inclusion in the group, and encourage their uninhibited participation in singing and social activities of the group.

The Singing for Inclusion project is undertaken in partnership with Creativity Australia and during 2019/20 is funded by Gandel Philanthropy.

Meeting Place

This project brought together Aboriginal children and their families and supporters at the Phee Broadway Theatre in Castlemaine on Thursday December 13th for an end-of-year performance of songs, dances and stories generated during the 2018 year at the fortnightly Meeting Place gatherings at the old Yapeen school buildings. Four songs about country and the Kulin seasons formed the basis of the concert. Three were written and workshopped with the children during the year, working with dance, singing and percussion accompaniment. The fourth song “Seeds that Grow”, was already known to the children and provided a link to the Singing from Country Project he children were involved in in 2017. Local Dja Dja Wurrung Aboriginal Elder Uncle Rick Nelson attended the concert and mentored two Dja Dja Wurrung girls to speak the Welcome to Country at the beginning of the show.

The Meeting Place project was funded by the Jack and Hedy Brent Foundation.


Songs of Country and Connection

The Songs of Country and Connection project features collaborations between Aboriginal Elders, children, linguistic advisors and musicians to incorporate local Aboriginal languages into songs. The project uses music to bring people of different cultures and ages together, to deepen environmental awareness and to contribute to the process of creative language revival. In 2018, activities involving songs with Aboriginal language were integrated into events on Bunurong/Boon Wurrung Country, Wurundjeri Country and GunaiKurnai Country. Activities included singing in language at the Harmony Day Street Parade and a multicultural concert in Wonthaggi, the Phillip Island Whale Festival, a Climate Change Exhibition and Carols by the Bay in Cowes. Songs sung on Bunurong/Boon Wurrung Country contained language gifted by Aunty Fay Stewart-Muir. Deep Listening and Singing Circles associated with the launch of Aunty Joy Murphy and Lisa Kennedy’s book ‘Welcome to Country’ were facilitated at the State Library of Victoria, the NGV and ACMI. Woiwurrung language sung at events on Wurundjeri Country was gifted by Aunty Joy Murphy and Mandy Nicholson. Events held on GunaiKurnai Country included a collaboration between Aboriginal Elders and children to write and perform a Welcome to Country song for the International Stratford Sister Cities Project. A NAIDOC week performance involved a collaboration between Aboriginal children from Kurnai College and members of Boomulele, one of CMVic’s StreetSounds band. Boomulele also performed an Acknowledgment of Country song in language at the Boolarra Folk Festival. Language for songs sung on GunaiKurnai Country was gifted by Elders Aunty Doris Paton, Aunty Sandra Neilson and Aunty Lynette Bishop.

A short film ‘To the Earth’ provides an example of the Songs of Country and Connection project in practice.

The Songs of Country and Connection project is run in collaboration with The Gippsland Singers Network and is funded by The Bass Coast Shire.

Voices of Peace

​This project started in 2017 and aims to empower recently arrived and settled refugees from Assyrian Chaldean background to establish a Women's Choir. Singing together can heal and builds connection and reduces the pain of dislocation and loss from the persecution they have suffered.Singing can strengthen connection to each other and promotes the Chaldean language. This will be project supported by a partnership between Community Music Victoria and Foundation House achieved through leadership training,and providing and developing resources and opportunities for wider social connection. 

More details here

That Girl

Community Music Victoria and singer/songwriter and community arts director Sarah Mandie have partnered with community organisations to implement an important community workshop project, including the making of local documentaries and a statewide music video clip based on the That Girl song composed by Sarah Mandie. That Girl project will strategically reach out to girls from culturally diverse communities across Melbourne and Victoria. That Girl project will strategically reach out to girls from culturally diverse communities across Melbourne and Victoria. These key communities include the Indian and Bhutanese comunities of Wodonga, the diverse ethnic community of the City of Boroondara, and the indigenous and non-indigenous communities in Healesville.

More details here

Singing from Country

'Singing from Country' is an innovative project which aims to inspire songwriters, community choirs and other community members to appreciate and celebrate Country. Many Victorians are street-wise but not land-literate. Music can communicate love for land, deepen knowledge of country and strengthen community. The project will link songwriters and community to Aboriginal knowledge-holders, naturalists and ecologists through workshops and a celebratory concert. From this will come songs that help reconnect people to place. Recordings will provide a resource for choirs and a video will document the project, which is a pilot for a statewide project. The project will run in collaboration with VACL (Victorian Aboriginal Corporation for Languages) and Connecting Country, and has received grant funding from Regional Arts Victoria. The first stage of the project was completed in 2017.
More details here 


StreetSounds is a major project that resulted from the Victoria Makes Music Program. It started in December 2014 with the help of funding from the Helen Macpherson Smith Trust and the R E Ross Trust.  By July 2017 the project has established over 10 new 'street' bands' in Victoria, culminating in a fabulous Street Band Festival bringing entertainment to the streets of Geelong and contributing music and fun to the Geelong After Dark Festival.  Although funding from the trusts finished in November 2017, all the bands continue to meet on a regular basis.

More details here

Sing English

Sing English is building the foundations of a locally delivered professional development program for EAL (English as an Additional Language) teachers and multicultural playgroup leaders in Greater Shepparton, focusing on singing as a teaching tool. The main activities include: devising and delivering a training program to around 20 project leaders from the 3 EAL sectors (schools, GoTAFE and South Shepparton Community Centre), Kildonan Uniting Care’s Multicultural Playgroup and Asylum Seekers group and the broader community; gathering evaluation data on current use of song in English language teaching; and setting up a program of skills workshops for teachers. The project is running in collaboration with the Urban Lyrebirds and has received grant frunding from the Ethnic Council of Shepparton. The first set of workshops occurred in early 2017.

4M (Making Marimbas Making Music)

The objective of the 4M project was to create new opportunities for individuals to become involved for the first time in group music making. Activities were focussed around both the construction and playing of marimbas which have been shown through previous activities to be hugely appealing to both men and women of all ages, including those who have had very little music playing experience in the past.  The project has received grant funding from Australian Unity and ran from June 2015 to June 2016.

More details here

Singing for Inclusion

Conductors/singing leaders are the backbone and inspirational leaders of community singing groups.  The best singing Leaders have a rare skill that encompasses professional artist, social worker, leader and administrator. The ongoing development and sustainability of singing programs are constrained by the limited number of such suitably skilled facilitators. CMVic has partnered with Creativity Australia to develop a singing leader development program to run over 12 months and include intensive Master Classes, workshops and mentoring. It is the start of a plan to develop the community singing leaders so that more programs supporting disadvantage and community building can be established. The initial phase of the project ran in collaboration with Creativity Australia and received grant funding from the R E Ross Trust.  

Sing Yarra Ranges

Sing Yarra Ranges is a project initiated by a group of singing leaders in the Dandenongs and Yarra Ranges to establish the Yarra Ranges Singers Leaders Network. The project provided professional development workshop days for members of the network, ran a series of seasonal community singing events, and a public workshop and massed performance at the Healesville Music Festival in November 2016. Sing Yarra Ranges was funded by the Shire of Yarra Ranges through their community development grants program.

Victoria Sings

Victoria Sings is an ongoing state-wide initiative designed to weave community singing into the cultural fabric of Victoria.  The work is based on the knowledge that singing together is an effective way to develop and sustain social connection. Our major strategy is to nurture and support singing leadership within communities. The key outcome of this initiative has been, and will continue to be, the emergence and growth of a state-wide network of independent, self-sustaining and re-generative singing circles which are engaged with their communities, welcome newcomers, nurture their participants, are proudly diverse.

Victoria Makes Music (VMM)

The ‘Victoria Makes Music’ (VMM) program was established in 2011 to promote and encourage community-based instrumental music making throughout Victoria.  The first phase of the program was funded by the Ian Potter Foundation and by the Helen Macpherson Smith Trust, and was completed in 2013.  The project supported instrumental music making by promoting existing groups and leaders, by providing support and networking opportunities, and by running music leadership workshops and events for groups and individuals interested in beginning instrumental groups. The second phase of the program has been StreetSounds, a three-year project funded by the Helen Macpherson Smith Trust and the RE Ross Trust; this began in December 2014 and culminated in the StreetSounds Festival held in conjunction with Geelong After Dark in May 2017.