COSAMP News & Blog

SongMakers at St Norbert College

COSAMP Schools Become SongMakers

SongMakers is a national mentoring program run by APRA AMCOS, with 50 Australian schools chosen to take part each year. Run with support from the Australian Government, SongMakers is all about contemporary music and is aimed at nurturing the next generation of hitmakers – right there in the classroom. Under the program, senior music students work closely with two high profile mentors – one artist and one producer – to create ‘market ready’ music, against the clock, from scratch.  The program is provided free to participating schools with mentors available including Katie Noonan (George), Ilan Kidron (The Potbelleez), Lior, Rai Thistlethwayte (Thirsty Merc), Jon Hume (Evermore) and more! Recently, two of COSAMP’s member schools were among the select group chosen to participate. St Norbert College in Perth transformed their music department into a creative hothouse for sixteen budding songwriters and producers, working with Award-winning writer/performer Kav Temperley (Eskimo Joe, Basement Birds) and producer, Anna Laverty (Nick Cave, Kate Miller-Heidke, Paul Dempsey, Eagle and the Worm). “The great thing about this program is that it takes the real world into the classroom,” says Dean Ormston, APRA AMCOS Head of Member Services Group. “For most of these students, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to collaborate with and learn from some of the biggest names in music. And because it’s so hands-on, it really fast-tracks students’ understanding of today’s contemporary music world and the steps needed for success.” (Pic Top: St Norberts College | Pic Above: Murray Bridge High School) In addition to St Norbert, Murray Bridge High School in South Australia also welcomed the SongMakers program with sixteen year 11 and 12 students split into four groups to each write and produce an original song from scratch in two days. Music Team Leader Sean Hickey was thrilled to be accepted. “To be one of only 50 successful schools is great,” he said. “I think the kids have surprised themselves with what they could actually achieve.” ARIA award winner Georgi Kay was one of the mentors and while this was only her fourth school, she said these were the best facilities she had seen so far. “Murray Bridge has been really cool, the facilities are amazing, they even have pro tools which we use in the industry so it’s great that the kids have been getting to know the programs already. All of the students have been pretty positive and they have all been into it from an early point which is really promising.” she said. SongMakers 2016 marks the third year of the national program. Go to to hear some of the workshop songs and for information about the high profile mentors. COSAMP members can look out for the St Norbert songs on the TPN Student Featured Sounds player.

TeachTechPlay Conference 2016

Innovation & Conversation Back for TeachTechPlay 2016

On the last Thursday and Friday of the recent school holidays, Ivanhoe Grammar in Victoria played host to the TeachTechPlay conference, an event designed by teachers for teachers across two exhilarating days of professional learning, sharing and networking. The conference showcased innovative use of technology that can impact on learning for all and visitors from as far as Hong Kong, the USA, the UK and New Zealand converged on the Ridgeway Campus to hear keynotes from Alice Keeler and Mark Anderson as well as Australia’s own Ryan Trainor on redesigning education. Read the Steve Brophy (Head of ICT at Ivanhoe Grammar)’s wrap up of up the two days below: The conference kicked off with Ivanhoe’s Principal Gerard Foley challenging conference delegates to use technology to disrupt education, to challenge the status quo. One of the highlights of the conference was definitely the level of access to the keynotes and presenters. It allowed everyone to continue conversations, share ideas and just hang out. The Middle Years building brilliantly enabled this, with conference sessions located on each of the three levels. Many sessions overflowed the room and due to the power of the schedule, delegates went along to another great session instead. Ryan Trainor was the closing keynote on Day 1 and what a way to finish the first day. Ryan is changing Higher Education for many industries through his company Rupublica. Through initiatives such as BSchool and BeautyEDU, Ryan is working to bridge the gap between industry and post school education. Ryan believes all children have a superpower and that we should be designing learning experiences that make them want to go to school. Mark Anderson launched into Day 2 with a drive and passion for transformative learning that is second to none. Mark is an absolute wealth of knowledge in the ICT realm, especially in the space of effective use in the classroom. He is also a massive advocate for authentic student voice and action.  The role of students at the conference perfectly accompanied this. Students in Year 7 Multimedia created individual 3D keepsakes for each delegate’s showbag with the purpose being to give teachers a reason to introduce themselves to other teachers. The Ivanhoe Digital Leaders were also present at the conference and it was their duty to document the learning of each day through video. The Year 6 Digital Leaders used Touchcast to complete recounts of the day, as well as to interview attendees. The Year 7 Digital Leaders spent the conference capturing footage for a student keynote, titled “From one learner to another”. The video was designed to show teachers what students see when they see their teachers learning. Keep posted for a feature on the TeachTechPlay students, they were just absolutely brilliant! For further information on the conference itself, visit the Teach Tech Play website at

MI Sound 2016

Explore, Promote & Be Discovered at MI Sound

It has been 17 years since Ballarat’s Royal South Street Society (RSSS) introduced a new performing arts discipline. In its 125th year of pure performance gold, the team are proud to announce Mi Sound (pronounced My Sound…The ‘Mi’ represents Music Industry). The Mi Sound competition differs from the traditional South Street music performance sections that focus on the technical mastery of the instrument and musicianship.  The publicised judging criteria of Mi Sound will focus on Music Industry Skills, such as the creativity and individuality of performance, audience engagement and stage presentation.  The Music Industry judges will award many prizes to recognise performances. For the first time in RSSS history, audiences will vote via Twitter on which performance was the most entertaining. Another first is that performances will be held in the Element Nightclub and The Lounge area at The Miners Tavern.  This live venue site caters for all styles of music from heavy metal to soft blues.  Lighting and stage effects will add to the professional presentation and atmosphere.  Music Industry Experts will be in attendance during the sessions and offer tips on how to succeed in the industry. What is Mi Sound? Performances will be for up to 20 minutes in a live nightclub environment as a soloist/group from Monday September 5 to Thursday September 8, 2016.  Morning, afternoon and evening sessions will be available. Any combination of instruments and student age groups are welcome.  Any style of music is encouraged including all genres of metal, rock, jazz, pop, screamo etc. and original works.  The sound and lighting will be operated by VCE-VET Technical Production students. Benefits to performers Perform to a live audience in a nightclub environment. Music Industry professionals will give written feedback and recorded commentary about performances. Their comments will focus on creativity and individuality of performance, audience engagement as well as stage presentation. Over ten prizes will be awarded by the judges. This includes a day of recording at Salt Studios in East Brighton, Melbourne and cash prizes. Total value is over $1600. Audiences will vote via Twitter on which performance was the most entertaining for each section. A cash prize will be awarded for every morning, afternoon and evening performance section. Oxygen College are offering a free Music Industry Information day for Mi Sound competitors. It will be held in Geelong at Oxygen College during the September holidays.  There will be a generic Music Industry Workshop in the morning which will include information on how to get into the Music Industry.  Then, smaller groups will be formed to participate in selected workshops which may include song writing, recording, live performance and music business.  The day is valued at $200 per person. Entries are now open and will close on Friday 20 May 2016 at 5pm.  Cost is $60 for groups and $25 for soloists. The 2016 MI Sound Competition will run from Monday September 5 through to Thursday September 8, 2016 at The Miners Tavern, 120 Lydiard Street North, Ballarat. There will be two performance spaces to choose from:  ‘Element Nightclub’ and ‘The Lounge’. The event is brought to life by ‘Oxygen College’ and powered by ‘COSAMP’. For more details and links to register, visit

Emmagination Festival

Emmagination Comes To Warrnambool

It’s back! Warrnambool’s original and best creativity festival! On Sunday 1 May, Emmanuel College Warrnambool invites you to an Open Day with a difference. All are welcome to tour the College, but for any student in Grade 5 and 6 you are also welcome to attend a program of free creativity workshops. Doors open at 1pm with Creativity workshops commencing at various times from 1:15pm onwards. Tours will run throughout the day with last tours leaving at 3.00pm. Arrive at the McAuley Campus Hall in Ardlie Street to meet your tour guides and receive an information pack. Music performances in the Hall throughout the day. Morning and afternoon tea provided, so feel free to have a cuppa, speak with the Principal and enjoy some music after the tour. For the creativity workshops, you secure your place by making a booking when you attend the Information Evening on Wednesday 27 April. The Information Evening will commence at 7:30pm in the McAuley Campus Hall in Ardlie Street but doors will open at 7pm for registration and for EMMagination workshop bookings. First in, best dressed! Alternatively, you can come along on the day and see what is available. Included in the list of workshops is the Music Recording Session Rockstar workshop. Choosing from a short list of songs, singers can perform on their own or in a small group with their friends to a backing track on stage in the Emmanuel Music Centre. No previous singing experience needed, just a desire to sing on stage! The session will be recorded and participants can take home an MP3 or CD of their performance to share with friends and family. Come along, learn, explore, create and find out all about Emmanuel College Warrnambool at the same time. The Emmanuel College Emmagination Festvial & Open Day takes place on Sunday 1st May, 2016. For more info, view the short video at

MITCH Next Generation Concert

MITCH, Showcasing The Next Generation

Over the last few years, the MITCH Next Generation concerts have presented an entire program of the best young musicians in the Central Highlands in Victoria. The concerts have been a wonderful way for young people to see their contemporaries and for MITCH to create programs that are diverse and inspiring. Following the very successful 2015 ‘Next Generation Concert’, MITCH is proud to present the 2016 concert – once again in the glorious, nineteenth century main hall at Braemar College on Sunday 17th April at 2.30 pm. For the first time, the 2016 performers are drawn from all the Macedon Ranges secondary schools such as, Braemar College, Gisborne Secondary College, Sacred Heart College and Kyneton Secondary College, as well as the Resonance String Orchestra. Already confirmed for the concert is the impressive Year 11 pianist Jing Zhang. She is preparing for Grade 7 piano under the tutelage of Bron Sozanski. MITCH Music Director, Henry Vyhnal said of this year’s program, “Sometimes in the past it has been a challenge put together a program that is consistent in standard and representative of a range of styles. This year, I have been inundated with requests from Macedon Ranges music teachers to present their very best students. I have had enough requests to present two concerts. Those who miss out now will be considered for the remainder of the 2016 season. The sheer number and quality of the young musicians being considered is proof of the fine efforts of our music teachers as well as the attraction that the MITCH concerts have for students who wish to enjoy a superlative, performing experience.” The 2016 MITCH Next Generation Concert takes place at Braemar College on Sunday 17th April at 2:30pm. Bookings can be made through the MITCH website:

Goldfields Connect

Goldfields Connect, Bringing Together Schools

GOLDFIELDS CONNECT – Music in Schools is a pilot project that connects local Victorian secondary school students who play and write music, helping them to share the music they produce, both online and in person. Goldfields Library Corporation has been working with Christine Sass, from the University of South Australia and COSAMP member school ‘Castlemaine Secondary School’ to research how to collect, store and share the music of secondary school students using social media. The project offers local schools a great opportunity to showcase their music and for the community to hear their recordings, and enjoy live performances in our libraries. Students and teachers interested in participating in the project, check out the project video on YouTube video. How Schools can Participate Schools need to follow the process below to participate. If you’re a student, interested in participating, you’ll need to ask your school’s music teacher to register. Register Your School Set up a SoundCloud account Create a moderated SoundCloud group that contains the full school name followed by the word “Playlist” Submit a Schools Registration form – you will be emailed further details of these steps at this stage Note the school only needs to be registered once Register Audio Tracks Schools can register unlimited audio tracks on behalf of students for consideration. The following process needs to be followed per audio track. Upload each track to SoundCloud as .wav or .aiff format and share it with the Goldfields Libraries Goldfields Connect Submissions group – your submission will be acknowledged via email Submit an Audio Track Form for each track to be considered – this can be done any time from February-October Note this process needs to be followed each time an audio track is submitted After this, the Library panel will consider each track and select a range to be included in the Goldfields Connect album for that year. The album will be available on Bandcamp and will be promoted by the Library. For further information on the project, download the Information Sheet or visit the info page at

The 21st Century Music Classroom

Step Inside The 21st Century Classroom

In 2012, Brad Fuller was contracted to redesign the classroom music program at Northern Beaches Christian School (NBCS) to “create a magical, inspiring space that allows students to make music at the speed of thought.” Using a pedagogy first approach, the team designed the space, furniture, equipment, IT and course-ware to foster engaged, 21st Century Musicians. Each week educators from around the world tour the school and the music space as they seek inspiration to change practice and design in their areas. Now, Australian teachers are being given the opportunity to spend a day in the NBCS Music Space described by a range of experts as an example of best practice music education. In a hands-on workshop with NBCS teachers Brad Fuller and Peter Orenstein, attendees are set to experience the space from the students’ perspective. You’ll not only learn about their pedagogy, you’ll try it for yourself. The team will cover everything from connecting the pedagogical, physical and virtual spaces, implementing the latest pedagogy, employing a 2 teacher collaborative teaching model, operating a paper free classroom, dealing with BYO, designing courses, integrating technology (such as BYOD, tablets, iPad apps LMS, and Google Apps), implementing the Music First Online Classroom, assessing students, running silent rehearsals and performances, implementing digital mixing and recording, integrating a Music VET course into the stage 5 BOSTES course, running a music TV show on YouTube and having the best software, hardware and instruments for students. While they share their story, the focus will be on helping people plan how their approach can inspire and equip Teachers to develop a unique approach to change their situation. NBCS have designed a modular setup that can be adapted into virtually any school setting, which is able to help those interested focus on the areas they’d like to change and give them ideas and tools to take their music program to the next level. The ’21st Century Music Classroom’ Workshop will take place on November 10. The cost for the 5-6 hour workshop will be $299.00 (+GST). All you’ll need to bring is a laptop and headphones. For more details and booking information, visit You can also download info in PDF format.

The New CUA Training Package

The CUA Creative Arts & Culture Training Package

With the new Training Package for VET Music qualifications expected to be endorsed soon, it’s a great time to start talking about some of the great new features regarding units and qualifications. COSAMP General Manager Kye Thomas takes us through the key aspects. What exactly is changing? The CUS09 Music Training Package is to be replaced by the much larger CUA Creative Arts & Culture Training Package. The new package keeps all that is good about the old training package units and removes some of the duplication that the review process from CUS01 – CUS09 aimed to, creating a more rounded package. It incorporates a number of creative industries training packages that previously stood alone, including CUS Music, CUF Screen and Media and CUE Entertainment. As a result the CUA package allows for more flexible selections of units and therefore, creation of diverse creative arts VET programs in schools. Will all qualifications have the “Music Industry” title? All Music qualifications will have the title “Music Industry”, followed by the specialisation in brackets. For example, “Certificate III in Music Industry (Sound Production)”. The three streams from the CUS09 Music Training package have been retained, although the name Technical Production, which was unique to the Cert III level qualification, has been replaced. Now all levels of sound based qualifications share the name “Sound Production” How does this affect Teachers currently delivering Certificate II, III or IV level VET qualifications? You’ll be happy to note that you’ll find the majority of the popular units from these qualifications have been retained in the new package and you will be able to continue using these units. (You’ll just have to get used to a new code!) You’ll also find that a huge number of new units will be available to you due to the extra flexibility created by this larger, more encompassing package Creative Arts & Culture package. There is also a new format for units, with two documents per unit; one for the unit outline, including the elements, performance criteria, range of conditions and the foundation skills, and one dedicated to the assessment requirements, including the performance evidence required and the knowledge evidence required. There will be support documentation to assist teachers in designing and delivering assessment tasks to meet the standards. I’m currently a COSAMP member school. How will my Assessment Tasks & Tools change? Here at COSAMP we have identified 25 newly available Units of Competency that we will be creating Assessment Tasks and tools for, bringing the total number of tasks that we will off under the new package to nearly 80! We’re excited about these new units and tasks because it provides fresh opportunities for VET in Schools students to study a broader range of industry relevant areas and practise skills that will equip them not only for the contemporary music industry but also for our modern and diverse working culture in Australia. I’m currently delivering a Certificate I in Creative Industries. Is this Qualification affected by the change? Well there’s an exciting new development at Certificate I level, actually. The old Cert I in Creative Industries has been retired and instead a Certificate I in Visual Arts will be available with a greater number of units to choose from. While this new Cert I can be packaged to almost completely replicate the music focus of the old Cert I option, it also offers a wider range of study options for using digital devices, using the internet and basic video and imaging skills. When will the CUA Creative Arts & Culture Training Package be endorsed/available? We are expecting the endorsement of the new package in late Octiober / early November and will be releasing a lot of information to COSAMP Member Schools. Something to note for Victorian Schools though; VCE programs for the new CUA training package will not begin until 2017. Schools outside of Victoria will be encouraged to deliver new 2016 programs from the CUA training package, however. Feel free to contact us here at COSAMP if you have any questions about the new Training Package and your school’s options for next year.

VCE VET Technical Production Exam Review Workshop

COSAMP’s Holiday Workshop A Success!

The recent Term 3 holidays saw 17 students from across Victoria come to COSAMP HQ for the annual VCE VET Technical Production Exam Workshop. Run at the joint COSAMP/Salt Studios facility in East Brighton, Kye Thomas and David Santamaria took the workshop assisted by guest presenters Craig Bentley (of Trinity Grammar) and Erica D’Angelo (of Haileybury), who provided excellent input. The day consisted of 6 small group sessions covering aspects such as exam skills and strategies for answering questions, aural analysis of production techniques and frequency responses typically found in Section A of the exam, overview of the mixing console, plugins, FX, signal processors, waveforms, microphones & their characteristics, PA setups, OHS, electronics basics and power requirements and digital audio theory which often appears in the exams. All Students who attended received a follow-up email later in the week with their own logins to the COSAMP Student Site, along with important resources to support their day’s work with the ability to continue a focused study leading in to the exam. For member schools of our TPN VET resource & support program, similar resources used during the day can be found in the Exam Review section of the Teachers’ resource website. Thanks once again to everyone who attended the day. Stay tuned for information and news on other Exam Review and Student workshops to take place in mid-late 2016.

Emmanuel College - Uncharted Sounds

Emmanuel To Defend ‘Koolest Skool’ Title

Emmanuel College (Warrnambool), through the Kool Skools Songwriting and Recording Project, is fast developing itself as the leading institution for vocational music education in the south-west. Having won an impressive 12 awards over the past five years, including the top prize of ‘Koolest Skool’ in 2014, students from Years 8-12 recently returned to Studio 52 in Melbourne to begin their title defence and record their six album. The 19-track album entitled Uncharted Sounds features an eclectic mix of musical styles from acoustic ballads to heavy metal and everything in between. Personnel-wise, the album features students from Years 8-12 and also features students from Emmanuel’s leading VET Music program; bringing together students from five south-west schools. Kool Skools is a songwriting and recording project for secondary level students. Kool Skools promotes, develops and supports a diverse range of talent and all genres of contemporary music writing and performance. Each school gets to work within a professional studio, recording an album of original music by their own school bands. Each project receives 450 CDs containing their own music, graphics and photos and videos are published on the web. “This year’s Kool Skools trip was a wonderful experience,” said Silver City (pictured) front-man Austin Del Rio. “We’re really grateful to everyone involved in the process: the artists, the engineers at Studio 52 and of course Mr Frampton and Mr Donahoo for putting in all the time and effort needed to undertake a project like this.” The official album launch of Uncharted Sounds took place on Wednesday September 16 at the Lighthouse Theatre, with a large audience in attendance. Over 250 albums sold on the night, with iTunes sales exceeding 100 albums/singles in just the first two weeks of listings. (Photo: Silver City – Ewen Stewart, Austin Del Rio, Sam Graham with Deaglan Irvine)