2018 Billy Thorpe Scholarship

Arts Queensland's annual Billy Thorpe Scholarship provides the opportunity to record with an established producer and to meet with and receive advice around career planning from a representative from Chugg Entertainment.

The scholarship, named in honour of the late Billy Thorpe, a great Australian rock musician who passed away in February 2007, was designed to help develop the future of rock and roll.

Billy Thorpe spent his formative years in Brisbane and made an enormous contribution to the Australian and global music industry over five decades of performing, writing and producing. View the Billy Thorpe performance. (external site)


Opening date: Thursday 23 November 2017
Closing date: midnight January 21, 2018
Announcement of winner: Monday, May 14, 2018


2016 Billy Thorpe Scholarship winner Ash Kerley (Marville) with Lynn Thorpe
Photo credit: John Stubbs at 77Photography


Key Eligibility

This program is open to emerging:

  • Individuals
  • Bands

What is an emerging musician?

An emerging musician is someone who is in the development stage of their music career.  They may not have yet achieved national/international sales or exposure or a record label deal but can be seen to be working towards these goals. An emerging musician is also someone who can demonstrate that they are committed to developing their instrumental/vocal technique, songwriting and performance skills.  There is no cut off age but older applicants would need to clearly demonstrate their early career phase status.

Applicants must:

  • be at least 18 years of age on January 1, 2016
  • be an Australian citizen or permanent resident
  • be residing in Queensland
  • have satisfied the reporting requirements of any previous Arts Queensland grants
  • have an ABN

The Fellowship does not support:

  • costs associated with a project or program that has already commenced
  • the costs of completing degree courses, theses or university, college or projects undertaken to gain formal qualifications
  • employees of Arts Queensland and QMusic
  • former employees of Arts Queensland or QMusic who ceased employment less than six months before the closing date
  • staff members of an Arts portfolio statutory authority or the Department of Science, Information Technology, Innovation and the Arts unless their application includes a covering letter from their employer that states the person’s role and employment details and that their application does not relate to carrying out the duties of their role.

About the Scholarship

The $10,000 Scholarship will be awarded to an emerging Queensland based contemporary musician or band.

The Scholarship will:

  • identify a talented, emerging, Queensland based musician or band who can demonstrate their commitment to a career in music and who will best benefit from the scholarship
  • enable the recipient/s to make significant progress creatively and in their music career by providing them with opportunity, tools and networks.

The scholarship is made up of the following components:

$4,000 - cash

$6,000 - towards a recording with an established producer as well as a meeting with Chugg Entertainment representatives to be arranged by QMusic.

On completion, the recipient will provide a report to QMusic on the creative and professional outcomes which the scholarship enabled.

QMusic is Queensland’s peak body for services to contemporary music and has been contracted to manage the Billy Thorpe Scholarship program on behalf of Arts Queensland in 2016-2017.

Full Guidelines, terms & conditions including important information for successful applicants HERE

Who to contact

For more information please contact QMusic by email at info@qmusic.com.au or telephone (07) 3257 0013.

Past grant recipients:

2017: Marville (Ash Kerley)
2016: Luke Daniel Peacock
2015: Ayla 
2013: Jeremy Neale 
2012: Astrid and The Asteroids 
2011: Sam Hales 
2010: Andrew Redford 
2009: Alan Boyle 
2008: Michael Gavriel 

Published: 11 Jan 2018 by QMusic Newsdesk