Home Music Music Features

How One Application Could Change The Trajectory of Your Whole Music Career

“You are cultivating your skill set as an artist in such a uniquely defined space.”

For young musicians hoping to enter the industry, the Bachelor of Contemporary Music at Southern Cross University is the real deal. It’s already been a launching pad for globally successful artists, like singer-songwriter BUOY, composer and musician Yantra de Vilder, Thirsty Merc’s Matt Smith, Omar Hanlon (pictured above) who recently toured as part of Amy Shark’s band, and award-winning producer Matt Fell.

Apply Here for the Rolling Stone Scholarship

It’s no surprise, then, to see a new cohort of talented students keen to attend Southern Cross University each year.

Rolling Stone Australia is once again teaming up with Southern Cross University to help put one lucky muso on the path to stardom – with $15,000 of education funding across three years of study.

The Rolling Stone Scholarship is set up to provide an emerging artist with the financial backing to hone their craft. It’s open to students from all over Australia, and is awarded based on academic merit, musical talent and personal character.

In 2020, Leon Holstegge won the inaugural scholarship. A versatile instrumentalist, Holstegge plays guitar, bass and drums.

Now in his third year, he’s keen to keep expanding his skillset at Southern Cross University.

“I’m playing drums, bass and guitar and I’ve been messing around with piano a bit,” he says. “My main goal is to become a session musician. I just like to play with everyone and across all the styles as well.”

This year’s competition saw Kaliya Alldridge, a talented indie-pop singer songwriter, win the ultimate prize to kick start her studies.

Since receiving her funding and beginning the degree at Southern Cross University, Alldrige has been focused on developing her own style and paving her way in the music industry.

“The scholarship has offered me an incredible start. I have been offered amazing opportunities to perform at various events across the Gold Coast region, further enhancing my performance skills in a live setting,” Alldridge says.

“It provides you with a unique edge, and an unparalleled opportunity to network with professionals that you wouldn’t otherwise have access to. Plus, you can focus more on the music and a large chunk of your tuition is taken care of.”

The degree has challenged her to reinvent her relationship with music and how she identifies as an artist.

“I am now so confident and more multifaceted now,” Alldrige continues.

Rolling Stones Recipient 2022 Kaliya Alldridge

Kaliya Alldridge has a bright future in front of her

“It definitely feels confronting because music is so close to who you are and your soul but there is no way I could uncover these strengths without this degree. I am so proud of how far I have come with a year and a half behind me.”

Now in her second year, Alldridge’s ambition remains steadfast. Her big dream?

“I said in my Zoom call when they revealed I was the winner that I want to play Rod Laver supporting Amy Shark. This hasn’t changed.”

“It would be incredible to tour internationally, reaching a fan base across the world with thousands singing back the words of your own songs that offered you so much when you wrote them – there wouldn’t be any other feeling to top that.”

With the support of Southern Cross University, that dream is becoming closer to reality.

On a daily basis, students are able to get a sense of the real world of performing, gearing them up for success after graduation.

“The bright lights and state-of-the-art gear really prepare you. We have a weekly ‘concert’ performing our originals and receiving feedback from our peers at the end – this is definitely the highlight of my week,” Alldridge says.

Alldridge and Holstegge are just two of many talented musicians who have started their careers at Southern Cross University. They truly believe the Rolling Stone Australia Scholarship is an invaluable advantage and support.

According to Alldrige, it’s an epic tool to have under your belt.

“You are cultivating your skill set as an artist in such a uniquely defined space,” she says.

Whether you’re keen to become an artist, produce albums, or teach the next generation, the best place to start is at Southern Cross University. Apply now for this year’s Rolling Stone Scholarship, and get a chance at $15,000 to fund your studies, equipment and musical development.

Applications open on July 3 and close September 28, 2023. To enter, applicants need to include a short statement about their dedication to their music career.

Get unlimited access to the coverage that shapes our culture.
to Rolling Stone magazine
to Rolling Stone magazine