Deborah Cheetham has been awarded the $60,000 Melbourne Prize for Music, which is presented to “an outstanding Victorian musician whose work demonstrates exceptional musicianship, skill and creativity”.

The Indigenous musician, who is a composer, a soprano and the Artistic Director of Short Black Opera, had a huge success earlier this year with her work Eumeralla, a war requiem for peace , presented by Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, where she is Composer in Residence in 2020. Her other works include the opera Pecan Summer and Dhungala Choral Connection Song Book.

Deborah Cheetham. Photograph © Simon Schluter

In June 2019 she received the Sir Bernard Heinze Memorial Award in recognition of her outstanding service to music. She has also been nominated for the Live Classical Act of the Year at the 2019 National Live Music Awards to be announced on December 4.

Cheetham is also a finalist in the Limelight Artists of the Year for 2019. Voting for the People’s Choice Awards closes at 11.59pm on December 5.

The Melbourne Prize Trust, which awards the Melbourne Prize for Music, was founded in 2004 by Executive Director Simon Warrender, with support from Committee for Melbourne. The 2019 Melbourne...