The AOAC committee consists of professional volunteers who are committed music lovers and advocates of the Arts. Since our inception by Shelia Prior 40 years ago, the AOAC has raised and awarded millions of dollars to support OPERA in Australia.

The Australian Opera Awards Committee was the first to honour Dame Joan Sutherland by establishing a scholarship in her name. For forty years, the Dame Joan Sutherland/AOAC Scholarship has been awarded annually. Among the many notable recipients of this award include Anthony Warlow, Daniel Sumegi, John Antoniou, Maria Pollicina, Gregory Tomlinson, Dominic Natoli, James Hancock, Richard Alexander, Dwayne Jones, Deborah Humble, Brad Cooper Andrew Goodwin, Emma Jayakumar, Simon Thew, Amy Radford and Lorina Gore.

Recognising that established artists also need assistance at various times in their careers, we have the ‘Sheila Prior Memorial Award’ to singers, conductors, instrumentalists and international teachers and vocal coaches who work with our performers in Australia.

The AOAC has sponsored three CDs; ‘The Power of Love’, Deborah Riedel with Richard Bonynge conducting the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestras, Horst Hoffmann’s ‘Great Opera Heroes’, in the Voice of Australia series for Walsingham Classics and for Melba Records and ‘Lisa Gasteen-Singer of the World’.