The David Laurence Scholarship for developing artists was created to help dismantle systems of prejudice and provide access to singing lessons to those who may not otherwise have access to them. It also focuses on the transformative nature that singing and music can have on our lives.
The award was created in honour of Dr David Laurence Brash, who devoted his life to improving the quality of life and mental health of countless people, and his support of the arts and music education.
If you are a person 18 years and over who dreams of pursuing singing, but something out of your control is standing in your way, I encourage you to apply for this scholarship. The award is open to citizens of any country.
This scholarship includes:
40 hours of one-on-one mentorship
- singing lessons
- language coaching
- stagecraft and acting
- musicianship and historically-informed performance
- professional development
Hailing from San Francisco, USA, Diane Ayerdi is a singer-actor on the rise. She started her vocal training at age 16 at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music before redirecting her attention to acting, having attained a Bachelor of Arts (Radio and Television, Cinema) from San Francisco State University, and an Associate of Arts (Arts and Humanities) at the City College of San Francisco. Diane has also trained at the Bay Area Acting Studio and San Francisco Acting Academy, with a focus on stage acting and voice overs.
During the global pandemic, Diane made her exciting return to singing. She studied with the Premiere Opera Vocal Arts Institute, where she studied with internationally renown soprano, Carol Vaness, and quickly started making waves on the international competition circuit. In 2022 alone, she won Laureate of the Third Degree at the Grand Prix of the International Vocal Competition, third prize at the King’s Peak Music Competition, and received honorable mentions at the Medici International Music Competition, Amadeus International Music Awards, and BTHVN Wien Online Competition.
Diane is also an accomplished lyricist, with credits such as Best Pop Song for the Hollywood Song-writing Contest 2015, finalist for the American Song-writing Awards 2015, and semi-finalist for UK Song-writing Contest 2018.
Diane is the 2023 recipient of the David Laurence Scholarship for developing artists and looks forward to her future engagement with Opera Parallèle for Stewart Wallace’s opera, Harvey Milk.
What is a Developing Artist? Do I need to be a certain age?
A developing artist is any amateur singer who is on their learning journey. This can include, but is absolutely not limited to, young singers. In fact, whilst the minimum age for this mentorship program is 18, there is no maximum age limit. If you are above the "typical age" targeted by usual education opportunities, you are very much invited to apply for this scholarship.
What do I need to include in my application?
You can find the application form at the top of this page. Please send your completed form, CV and two videos of you singing to firstname.lastname@example.org
What if I need help with my application?
If you need any help with your application, send your questions to email@example.com
Are there any restrictions to the scholarship?
Restrictions to the scholarship are outlined here.
Who was David Laurence?
This scholarship was created in honour of the late Dr David Laurence Brash. You can read more about him here.
I live in another country, how do I have my lessons with you?
This scholarship is open to singers internationally. All you need is a stable internet connection and access to Zoom. Please include your time zone and availability on your application form to ensure we can find a mutually good time in which we can meet each other.
How much does it cost to apply?
In keeping with the mission of accessibility, there is no fee to apply for this scholarship.
Trinity Preston is a young singer-songwriter on the path to stardom. By age 15, she was already winning open-age singing competitions, and at 16 her original song “Give me a Name” (which she recorded with Australian Idol winner, Damien Leith) was aired on Power FM.
Trinity has used her precocious musicality to largely teach herself, emulating recordings of her favorite singers with powerful and passionate voices.
In addition to being the recipient of the 2022 David Laurence Scholarship for developing artists, Trinity will also be undertaking a Bachelor of Performance and Theatre at the University of Wollongong.
Trinity's story in the Hunter Valley News can be found here.