Australian conductor Simone Young has been announced as Advance Awards’ Global Icon for 2021.

Established in 2012, the Advance Awards recognise the work of Australians who are making an impact on the global stage in industry sectors that are of particular importance to Australia, including the Arts.

Simone Young

Simone Young © Nic Walker


The Icon Award recognises outstanding Australians with immense talent who represent Australia on the world stage to diverse audiences. Young, Chief Conductor Designate of the Sydney Symphony, who will take up the post of Chief Conductor next year, said, “I am driven to try to live up to the mastery of the great composers and to communicate, as best I can, their powerful messages of compassion and humanity”.

Responding to the news, CEO of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Emma Dunch, said, “This is a wonderful and appropriate recognition of Simone’s tremendous contribution to arts and culture and her work towards securing Australia’s status as a cultural leader over her decades-long career.”

“Her leadership of great orchestras and opera houses around the world, and her many significant appointments, are a clear demonstration of her dedication to artistic excellence and her exceptional skill as a musician and communicator. Her dedication to engaging with the widest possible audiences and her commitment to the next generation of musicians has set her apart.

Young was also a nominee in the Arts Award, alongside another Australian conductor, Dr Carolyn Watson. The award recipient in this category was Pallavi Sharda, a Bollywood star, Australian actor and dancer.

The 2021 Advance Awards were held online, with awards given out in the categories of Alumni, Emerging Leaders, Education and Research, Life Sciences, Sustainability, Technology and Entrepreneurship, Social Impact, Fintech, Commercial Creatives and Asia Impact.

Find out more about Advance at their website.

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