Deborah Cheetham
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 Deborah Cheetham 

Deborah Cheetham, Yorta Yorta Soprano, composer and educator has established her place as an artist in great demand. Since her international debut in 1997 Ms Cheetham has performed in the theatre and concert halls of Europe, the United States, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and around Australia.

In April 2007 Ms Cheetham was awarded a prestigious two-year Fellowship from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Board of the Australia Council for the Arts. This fellowship has allowed Ms Cheetham to create Australia’s first Indigenous opera, Pecan Summer. In 2010, Ms Cheetham brought together Australia’s first classically trained Indigenous ensemble to present the world premiere of Pecan Summer.

In 2010 Ms Cheetham was a finalist for Australian of the year in Victoria.

The success of Pecan Summer has led Ms Cheetham to create Short Black Opera Company, a national not-for-profit opera company devoted to the development of Indigenous opera singers. Short Black Opera has now successfully produced three consecutive seasons of Pecan Summer: 2010, on country in Mooroopna, Victoria; 2011at the Arts Centre, Melbourne; 2012 in Perth, at the State Theatre Centre of WA and 2014 in Adeladie, at the Her Majesty's Theatre.

Ms Cheetham is Associate Dean (Indigenous) at the Faculty of VCA & MCM, University of Melbourne and Head of the Wilin Centre for Indigenous Arts and Cultural Development.

In the 2014 Queen's Birthday Honours List, Ms Cheetham was appointed as an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO), for distinguished service to the performing arts as an opera singer, composer and artistic director, tho the development of Indigenous artists and to innovation in performance.

Victorian Bush Fire Memorial Anthem

On February 7 2009 Victorians experienced the devastation of the Black Saturday bush fires. More than two hundred lives and one thousand homes were lost. In response, the Federal Government and the State Government of Victoria brought the nation together with a televised memorial service. Attending the service were those men, women and children affected by this tragedy. They were joined by representatives from all levels of the Australian Government and the Royal Family.

The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, led by their chief conductor Oleg Catani presented this stirring arrangement of our national anthem, created by Andrew Bee and John Foreman. Joined by a massed choir of over 500 voices I was honoured to pay my respect to the victims and survivors of these terrible fires by singing Advance Australia Fair.
Deborah Cheetham

Soprano and composer Deborah Cheetham shares the unique story of her journey to be find her belonging on ABC Classic FM.

Dali Mana Gamarada
2001 D.Cheetham

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