Join AMEB’s Online Orchestra National Music Project

Australian Music Examinations Board (AMEB) has launched its third Online Orchestra national music project. Instrumentalists and singers everywhere are invited to join the biggest virtual orchestra in Australia and to start preparing their entry for submission.

Entries open on April 1 and close on July 31. The gala online performance will be revealed in October.

In 2021, the AMEB commissioned a very special piece for the Online Orchestra: Morning Star and Evening Star written by Candace Kruger, a Kombumerri – Ngugi yarrabilgingun (songwoman) and Indigenous ethnomusicologist from south-east Queensland, with co-writers Lann Levinge and Isobella Kruger. The song is based on an Aboriginal lullaby sung to her Aunty Lottie Levinge, who, decades later, shared it with her family. (Morning Star and Evening Star  on YouTube).

‘Lottie’s wish was to have Morning Star and Evening Star passed on and shared, so I am delighted that through the Yugambeh Youth Aboriginal Corporation’s partnership with the AMEB, we can fulfil this request. Alongside my cousin Lann Levinge, my daughter Isobella Kruger and Blessed by our Elders, we hope that through the Morning Star and Evening Star songline people enjoy learning the narrative of our people’ says Candace Kruger.

Participants including individuals, schools, choirs and community groups can download the music arrangement, including parts for a wide range of instruments and various skill levels They can rehearse, record their performance and upload it to the website. AMEB will then combine all the clips to create one impressive virtual performance.

The first Online Orchestra in 2018 celebrated AMEB’s centenary. Waltzing Matilda was performed with over 2000 participants and conducted by Ben Northey. In 2019 the chosen song was I am Australian conducted by Jessica Gethin. Taking a year off in 2020 to prepare for a truly special Online Orchestra in 2021 AMEB is thrilled to release Morning Star and Evening Star and associated resources.  

In 1996, Aunty Lottie Eaton (Levinge) passed on knowledge of the Yugambeh story about the morning and evening star to Candace as she recalled a lullaby sung to her by her Grandmother Jenny Graham. Lottie was staying with her Granny Graham while attending school in Southport (QLD) in the 1930s. By 1996 when Lottie remembered this song, she was an older woman and it had been over 60 years since she last sang or heard the song in Yugambeh language. Lottie was pleased she could remember the words in English as it was her favourite lullaby.
Morning Star and Evening Star
Who is the fat one and who is the thin one?
Morning Star and Evening Star
Who should come out first?
Morning Star calls to Evening Star, “Come on!”
Evening Star sings out, “No, you go ahead!”
Click here to watch the music video on YouTube. 

Project & entry details:

Key Dates
1 April 2021 – Entries open
31 July 2021 – Entries close
October 2021 – AMEB Online Orchestra performance of Morning Star and Evening Star released.

Original artwork drawn by Isobella Kruger and graphic designed by Paula Nihot.

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