The Alexandra Cameron Memorial Fund honours the founder of Melbourne Youth Orchestras, Dr. Alexandra Cameron.
Dr Cameron changed the face of music education in Victoria. With a background as a lecturer in music education at the University of Melbourne, she became the State’s first school music inspector in 1966, with responsibility for the total development of music education in secondary schools, and an interest in group performance.
In 1967, along with Victoria’s original team of specialist music educators, she established the Secondary Schools Concert Committee, now Melbourne Youth Orchestras, to provide ensemble music performance opportunities for school students. Concerts were held at the Melbourne Town Hall in 1967, 1968 and 1969.
She took the organisation from its infancy and oversaw the introduction of the State Secondary Schools Orchestra in 1970 which was renamed Melbourne Youth Orchestra in 1971. The Melbourne Holiday Music Camp was established in 1972, and by 1974 The Melbourne Youth Symphonic Band, the Melbourne Youth Choir, and the Percy Grainger Youth Orchestra had all formed.
The rapid expansion of the program, and its enduring success, are testament to Dr Cameron’s devotion to furthering opportunities for young musicians. She had boundless energy and worked tirelessly to provide inspirational musical and cultural opportunities for young musicians. Nothing was impossible – rather, she knew only “degrees of impossibility”. She always believed that young people respond to challenge and leadership, and this she gave.
A commitment to excellence is the foundation for success. Dr Cameron’s commitment endures at MYO. In our 50th anniversary year, we continue to share her passion for enriching young lives through the power of music.
Melbourne Youth Orchestras would like to thank those who have generously donated to the Alexandra Cameron Memorial Fund:
Barbara Argall, Pierre Harcourt, Bruce Morton, Mary R. Kelleher, Mary Rose, Robyn and Roy Rose
MYO maintains Dr Cameron’s commitment to ensuring that no young learner should be excluded based on disadvantage. Therefore, your gift to the Alexandra Cameron Memorial Fund will directly support bursaries for young Victorian musicians who would otherwise be unable to take part.
Thank you for your generous support.