Growing the music careers of young regional women is the focus of creative mentoring program BIG SKY GIRLS which is making its return in 2018.

First launched last year, the BIG SKY GIRLS in an initiative of Brisbane music company SUGARRUSH Music and will see young female songwriters from regional Queensland supported through a six-month mentorship aimed at creative development and establishing music careers.

BIG SKY GIRLS focuses on songwriting and performance skills, musical composition and builds confidence and self-esteem. The project also helps establish important networks and industry knowledge for those involved and plays a key role in keeping songwriting and storytelling alive and prospering across regional Queensland.

Aside from the mentoring process, the selected participants (aged 15 – 25) will also see one of their songs professionally recorded and be invited to perform at a showcase in October in Brisbane.

Project manager Deb Suckling says the project unearths talent that would largely go unnoticed and unsupported, often due to a simple lack of resources.

“This is our next generation of female artists,“ she explains. “Fostering and nurturing artists on both a creative and industry level is crucial for young artists in regional areas. And BIG SKY GIRLS aims to give these young women an opportunity to not only pursue creative careers but also tell their stories and those of their communities.”

BIG SKY GIRLS 2018 is receiving funding from the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland and APRA:AMCOS alongside continued support from publishing powerhouse Sony/ATV.

Head of AnR at Sony/ATV Craig Hawker said: “We are delighted to once again be supporting this initiative. To see the talent and development of last year’s participants has just been incredible and I look forward to once again meeting this year’s participants.”

The strength of last year’s group of artists was demonstrated with several earning nominations in this year’s Queensland Music Awards while Tia Gostelow and Asha Jeffries have both been shortlisted for the prestigious national Vanda and Young songwriting prize.

The 2018 BIG SKY GIRLS mentors represent the diversity of established female artists and industry from Queensland and and will be announced soon.

Applications open May 10 and close May 31. Successful applicants will be notified via email by June 5, 2018 and must be able to travel to Brisbane for mentoring workshops and recording  – please see the application form for details . Travel and accommodation costs for selected artists will be covered by the program.

To apply head to: