University Medical Orchestra prescribes philanthropy

Adelaide University Medical Orchestra's Thomas Johns and Michael Riceman

The Adelaide University Medical Orchestra (AUMO) was always going to be exceptional.

When established in 2008, it was the world’s first single-faculty medical orchestra. Today, it comprises a diverse group of more than 200 University of Adelaide medical students, forming nearly a dozen music, art and dance ensembles.

But it’s the organisation’s philanthropy that truly sets it apart. The AUMO Foundation engages with a different community health initiative or not-for-profit every year, typically within South Australia but sometimes nationally.

The Foundation donated all proceeds from the orchestra’s annual AUMO Prescribes Jazz performance to the Elder Conservatorium’s Centre for Aboriginal Studies in Music (CASM), which used the funds to purchase state-of-the-art equipment for its Indigenous recording studio. This gift will have a significant positive impact on aspiring Indigenous musicians for years to come.

“CASM has a very important role to play,” AUMO co-chair Thomas Johns explains. “It sits within the University of Adelaide’s National Centre of Aboriginal Language and Music Studies, which engages Indigenous students and communities to strengthen both their culture and wellbeing.”

“CASM’s specific role is providing a foundation-year program for Australian Indigenous music students seeking entry into University of Adelaide degrees in Australian Indigenous music. So giving those students access to fantastic, modern equipment will really fuel their enthusiasm, and give them the best possible tools to work with.”

According to Thomas, AUMO’s philanthropy is a natural extension of its passion for sharing a love of music for the benefit of others.

Being medical students, we pride ourselves on promoting good health; and music’s ability to enhance wellbeing is undeniable. So organising our concerts is always something we look forward to. Being able to raise money for great causes like this is just the cherry on top. Of course this success would not be possible without the support of the AUMO community. Thank you!AUMO co-chair Thomas Johns

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