The Melba Foundation was established to promote Australia’s finest classical musicians and artists in the national and international music world.
The appointed role of the foundation is to help the best contemporary Australian musicians, the Nellie Melbas and Joan Sutherlands of today, develop a profile and continue to build musical careers on an international stage.
The Melba Foundation was established in 2001, with founding benefactor Dame Elisabeth Murdoch and patrons Dame Joan Sutherland and Richard Bonynge.
The Melba Foundation funds the fine music label, Melba Recordings, to produce and distribute recordings that have earned accolades around the world.Highly regarded music producer, Maria Vandamme, is CEO of Melba Foundation and managing director of Melba Recordings.
During its first thirteen years Melba Recordings has supported and recorded several established Australian artists – including the conductors Richard Bonynge and Simone Young, and singers Cheryl Barker and Stuart Skelton – as well as an increasing number of emerging talents like tenor Steve Davislim, violinist Ray Chen, cellists Pei-Jee and Pei-San Ng, and many others.
An original catalogue has been enriched by inaugural recordings of music by Saint-Saëns, Vierne and Chausson, and striking new interpretations of Bach, Mozart, Schubert and Britten using many of the best Australian artists and technicians.The specialist catalogue gives Melba Recordings an extra standing on the world stage.
In 2004, the Federal Government awarded the Melba Foundation a five-year grant of $5 million and in 2009, a three-year grant of $2.25 million, to produce high-quality music recordings that showcase Australian artists on the world classical music stage.
The Melba Foundation is taking Australian music culture to the world and creating a legacy for future Australians. The beneficiaries of this initiative are Australia’s musicians, artists, orchestras and performing arts organisations.
To date (June 2012), Melba Recordings has recorded 66 CDs . The catalogue includes many world premiere releases designed specifically to interest the international market.
"Melba Recordings … a label of fragrant distinction” was written by Rob Barnett in his review of Rhapsodie in MUSIC WEB INTERNATIONAL (UK), 22 March 2009 where he also said “All credit to the Australian Government for having the percipience to fund it.”
Article by Terry Lane : MELBA - The Name that Means Perfection
Article by Michael Quinn: Melba Recordings: The First Decade
View the current Melba Foundation Board of Directors, Patrons and Ambassadors
Download the Melba Foundation Annual Report 2011 - 2012
To learn more about supporting the Melba Foundation go to Support Us