Tuesday, November 19, 2019


2019 Artist of the Year
Michael Dooley. Photo: Peter Hislop.

CANBERRA composer Michael Dooley has been named 2019 Canberra Citynews Artist of the Year, it was announced tonight (November 19) at the 29th ACT Arts Awards evening, held in the Canberra Museum & Gallery.
Composer and pianist Michael Dooley was singled out by the Canberra Critics Circle judging panel as a composer and pianist whose astonishing year has involved jazz and classical performances, recordings and compositions. These included a work premiered at the Canberra International Music Festival, film scores, a song cycle, a gospel oratorio, works for the Canberra Wind Symphony and his first piano concerto, premiered by the National Capital Orchestra.
Christopher Samuel Carroll, winner of the Helen Tsongas Award
Earlier in the evening, the inaugural Helen Tsongas Award for Excellence in Acting was presented by ACT Arts Minister, Gordon Ramsay to Christopher Samuel Carroll, whose many performances in 2018-19 have included roles Icarus and Metamorphosis at The Street Theatre,  Howie the Rookie at Smith’s   and Malvolio in Lakespeare’s outdoor Twelfth Night.
The new award is an initiative of the Tsongas family to keep alive the memory of their daughter and sister, the well-known Canberra actor Helen Tsongas, (Brajkovic) who died in a motorcycle accident with her husband 8 years ago. 
The ACT Arts Awards evening, hosted by the Canberra Critics Circle at the Canberra Museum and Gallery, also featured the circle’s own awards, which went to visual artists Julie Ryder, Raquel Ormella, Dianne Fogwell, Hiroe Swen, Helen Aitken-Kuhnen, Mio Kuhnen, Gilbert Riedelbauch and Keiko Amenomori-Schmeisser, writers Ginger Gorman, Kathryn Hind, Robert Macklin, Moya Pacey, Sandra Renew, Nigel Featherstone and Ginger Gorman, dance artists Zara Bartley, Daniel Convery, Nathan Rutup, Ryan Stone and the Australian Dance Party, theatre artists Jarrad West, David Atfield, Omar Musa, Christopher Samuel Carroll, The Street Theatre and Mockingbird Theatre, musical theatre artists Pippin Carroll, Pee Wee Productions and Charlotte Gearside, musicians Barbara Jane Gilby, Louise Page, Phillipa Candy, Michael Dooley, Christopher Latham, Dan Walker and Super Rats, led by Tim Meyen, film producers Lisa Shaunnessy and Andy Marriott and film director Tony D’Aquino.