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Contemporary & World Music


The Contemporary & World Music residency is a collaboration between Yeronga State High School and singer and songwriter, Leah Scicluna supported through the Artist in Residence program.

The residency builds and extends on the existing contemporary music program in the school by engaging students in creative arts practice through the composition of original songs, recordings, music videos and performances. 

As part of the residency, The "Y" Gallery, a series of twice weekly performances and workshops, encouraged students to experiment, be musically creative and collaborate with other students outside their regular groups.

Yeronga State High School has reported increases in student interest, participation and engagement as a result of the project. 


July 2015 to December 2015


Yeronga, Brisbane, Queensland


Key stats

  • 170 students
  • 24 educators
  • 1 artist

Arts Queensland contribution

$20,000 – Artist in Residence program


  • Music Industry has been established as a new subject and extra-curricular activity in the school with over 20 per cent of the school population participating. The school’s music program is now representative of all cultures within the school (69 per cent of the student population com from 48 different overseas countries).
  • The school has reported improved student data include attendance, achievement and engagement in music classes. 
  • The residency has contributed to development of strong relationships, peer-to-peer learning, collaborative skills and social adaptation across different peer groups and grade levels. Digitally recorded student music provided opportunities for self and peer analysis and improved skills in technical aspects.
  • There have been numerous requests for cross-curricular connections from non-arts faculties, e.g. dance connecting with maths. The school is planning to continue with artists in classrooms to develop oral literacy, wellbeing and increase engagement as part of a successful application to the Collaboration and Innovation Fund (a one-off initiative of the Queensland Government through the Department of Education and Training). 
  • The project has increased the artist’s skills and knowledge to work across the education curriculum.

Learnings and reflections

The artist-in-residence program has transformed music subjects at the school.

Students benefited from the availability of open discussions about the various facades of real world industry expectations as opposed to an idealised version of what to expect. This is very important for the student’s perceptions and their career pathways.

Project management was an area that saw strong development. Planning sessions with student groups needed to be flexible and adapt to class timetables to ensure the artist-in-residence time was a high priority and utilised in the most beneficial way.
Communication among staff was essential to the success of the project: 

The teachers are aware of student strengths and interests and of precisely which areas need to be expanded on.  The students can find this challenging, especially with the age bracket as inhibition plays a large role in their social development during this time. The educator was able to facilitate the most positive and productive environment for best possible outcomes.

Contact for further information

Gordon Collis



Sound cloud:


A pdf version of the Contemporary and World Music case study (PDF) (287.25 KB) is available.

All images provided by Yeronga State High School.