It’s that time again when we get to take a moment to reflect on the year that’s been. 2023 has been an incredible year for Topology. Let’s reflect on some of the highlights:
In January, we kicked off another year of our highly acclaimed Top Up in Schools program, a cornerstone initiative that empowers students across Queensland to cultivate their creative potential.
We extend our heartfelt gratitude to the Tim Fairfax Family Foundation and Arts Queensland for their unwavering support of all our Creative Academy and Growing Creative Communities endeavours. Together, we are making a significant impact on the lives of artists and regional communities.
March was brimming with excitement as we hit the road with our Creative Communities Workshops, visiting the vibrant towns of Ilfracombe, Isisford, Winton, Longreach, and Barcaldine. Collaborating with participants, we co-created captivating new songs inspired by their unique towns and experiences.
We also had the privilege of visiting Normanby Station, where we were joined by the talented Harrigan Brothers from the Black Image Band. Our exceptional Vocal and Songwriting Tutor, Jade, shares her reflections on this unforgettable journey below.
April brought even more exhilaration with the Creative Bootcamp at Montville State Primary School. Witnessing the artistic talents of students from years 4 to 8 was a true delight. These young artists are on a remarkable journey, and we’re proud to support their growth.
‘The War Artist: An Evening with Topology’ marked our inaugural event of the year—a night that will forever be etched in our memories. Live music, thought-provoking recollections, and an exclusive glimpse into the creative development of ‘The War Artist’ captivated the audience.
Esteemed guest speakers, including Simon Cleary, the author of ‘The War Artist’, Tim Thomas from Commando in Your Corner and Kerri-Anne Woodbury from Gallipoli Medical Research Foundation joined Topology, enlightening us all on the profound connections between the mind, body, and the response to trauma.
Inspired by the support we received, we launched a fundraiser to further develop ‘The War Artist’. The response from our community was overwhelming, and together, we raised an incredible $20,000. We are deeply grateful to all of our generous donors. This will be matched by our friends at Creative Partnerships and Arts Queensland. This substantial sum directly fuels the continuous progress of ‘The War Artist’, and we eagerly anticipate sharing updates on its development with all of you.
May took us on a captivating Queensland Stories workshop trip to Normanton, where we connected with the local community through workshops at the Bynoe Arts Centre, Gulf Christian College, Karumba State School, and the Gidgee Healing Centre—an organisation devoted to achieving equitable health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
In July, five Topology musicians took off to the Walter Reid Cultural Centre for the Rockhampton Creative Bootcamp. Thanks to our friends at Regional Arts Fund (RAF), 20 local musicians created an hour of original music to showcase in
their final performance, opened by Rockhampton’s Mayor, Tony Williams!
July also marked the commencement of Topology’s collaboration with Jugglers Art Space in providing storytelling opportunities for cancer patients to express their journeys through You Can Make Some Noise songwriting workshops. At Topology, we are passionate about fostering creativity, and already we have seen the positive affect that these workshops have had on the livelihood of both participants and mentors.
Over 20 new original compositions were crafted in August through our Creative Academy Workshops visiting Dirranbandi State School and Bollon State School before finishing the month with Goondiwindi Music Camp. It is not only heartwarming, but inspiring to see these new works come to life and how your support impacts the lives of artists and regional communities.
Brisbane Creative Bootcamp brought together creative superstars in September to participate in workshops and develop their craft under the tutelage of Topology musicians. At the end of this week long program, participants had the opportunity to record their original music professionally and we couldn’t be more thrilled with the outcome. These recordings can serve as a showcase of each participants talent and ambition in order to further their musical careers.
The excitement continued in September with the final leg of the Queensland Stories tour, and an invitation to John Babbage from the Harrigan Brothers (Black Image Band) to join them on stage for an incredible performance at Normanton’s Purple Pub and Savannah In the Round Festival.
Featuring beautiful, original compositions from Launchpad participants Jane Wei and Abigail Lui, the final chapter of Queensland Stories enchanted Brisbane at the iconic Red Hill Cinemas in October.
The Inglewood Seniors group took the stage by storm as well in October as they were joined by year 3-4 students from Inglewood State School and the whole school from St Maria Goretti for dance and songwriting workshops in Inglewood.
Finally in November, the outback adventures continued with John Babbage, Lucas Montgomery, and Nick Keogh-Peel hitting the road to deliver workshops in Richmond and Julia Creek, and perform with Isisford State School students during their end of year event.
We extend our gratitude to Matthew and Amanda Strong from Longreach Real Estate for their support in funding a workshop for Longreach State High School’s Wellness Week. It is the individuals who see the true value in these programs that continue to make an impact on lives through music.
Texas Community Workshops November 2023. Photo by Andrew Johnson.
A Sneak Peak of What’s Up Next at Topology
2024 is going to be a huge year! With Topology re-launching their ‘Up Close’ series, we’ll see exciting collaborations both old and new coming up.
We are kicking off early in 2024, heading out in January to Charleville, Boulia, Camooweal, Cloncurry, Inglewood and Dajarra.
The Stairwell Project and You Can Make Some Noise will continue expanding with an EP of recordings on the way in 2024.
Plus many more exciting projects we can’t wait to share!