Well here they are – your finalists for the FBi Sydney Music Arts & Culture Awards! Majestic aren’t they? With nine categories open for voting, we want to know who of the nominees you think changed the game this past year.
Click on a category to see the nominees! When you’re ready, you can vote here.
Art at its best challenges the accepted shape of things. It transforms materials, spaces and bodies in order, ultimately, to transform consciousness. While this year’s nominees run the gamut of artistic practice, their work is marbled through with themes of cultural equilibrium and reforming and reframing what we think of as the Australian experience.
Curating projects in a way that preserves individual artistic vision but also adds power to its message by rendering it part of a whole, takes creativity and a deft touch. Each of these nominees’ curatorial efforts have challenged, immersed and delighted us this past year, yielding programs that became greater than the sum of their parts.
What makes a great meal in your opinion? Is it a confronting mouthfeel? Provocative plating? All you can eat bacon bits? In 2023, whether you were in the market for some left-field innovation or trad transcendence, these six taste-makers had you well and truly covered. Which nominee left the best taste in your mouth?
Even though the way we enjoy gigs has continually changed shaped these past few years, a few things remain the same. A good live show will move your feet or your heart (maybe both), and leave you buzzing long after the curtains close. Seated, masked, separated, and in a well ventilated room with half the number of kindred spirits, which of these nominees still made magic on stage in 2023?
Music events brought us together again in 2023. Across dancefloors, festivals, and venue takeovers, we remembered what it was like to wish some sets were infinite, to be absorbed by colour and light, to spend hours in awe etc.? Which curator of made you forget about the passage of time?
In a time where digital reigns supreme, a video can sometimes make you fall a little more in love with the music. Striking visuals, high concepts, playful edits, and clever homages were the name of the game in 2023 as music videos made a comeback in a big way. Which one caught your eye?
We’re pretty good at spotting a rising star before they enter the stratosphere. These six Sydney up ’n’ comers are right on the cusp and we’re crowd-sourcing our crystal ball, asking you to help us predict who’ll be hitting the big time next. Let us know which of these “only a matter of time” type of acts is the “only a matter of time”-est of them all.
When they came over our airwaves, which of eight bona fide ballads caught your ears and held on tight? All of them? Well you can only vote for one so maybe just choose the one that pays the least rent to live in your brain – maybe it even resides there rent-free.
Despite the digital age’s persistent threats to its primacy, the album (and its relatives) is still the pre-eminent format – allowing artists the freedom to indulge their creativity in greater depth, and to make more complex and substantial statements. In 2023 these Sydney acts delivered cohesive collections that kept us locked in from start to finish. Which was your record of the year?
SMAC OF THE YEAR
The SMAC of the Year Award will also be presented to an individual or collective who has made an exceptional contribution to Sydney’s cultural fabric, joining past recipients including Amani Haydar, Vanessa Turnbull-Roberts, Heidi Lenffer and Jess Scully.