Australian Institute of Music

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The Australian Institute of Music (AIM) is a private not-for-profit institution. AIM is nationally recognized institution based in Sydney and Melbourne offering undergraduate and graduate courses in Contemporary Performance, Classical Performance, Audio Engineering, Composition & Music Production, Musical theatre, Theatre Performance and Acting,Arts Management and Entertainment Management.[1]

AIM students individually tailor their studies to integrate performance skills, business management, marketing, individual instrument or voice lessons, audio & sound engineering, music production and other specialised units. Students in the Bachelor of Entertainment at AIM, and students in the Bachelor of Performance at the Australian Academy of Dramatic Art are the only AIM students who are required to undertake industry placements as part of their courses.[2]

The purpose of this education is for students to develop the confidence and skills needed to pursue a successful career in the music industry, performing arts & wider entertainment fields.


AIM has a campus in Surry Hills, and 120 King Street Melbourne CBD.


Studio facilities include the industry standard fully equipped 'QStudios’ and sound labs [3] where students have the opportunity to compose, record and mix their work. AIM also has ‘John Painter Hall’ (300 seat auditorium) where students perform their skills to live audiences on a professionally equipped stage, and the Pilgrim Theatre at 262 Pitt St, Sydney where many of AIM’s theatre performances take place.[4]

There is a central student lounge area with Cafe, dedicated Performing Arts Library and multi-level classrooms across four buildings with 101 teaching spaces.[5]

Music High School[edit]

In addition, senior secondary facilities host AIM High,[6] a music High School. By combining traditional NSW HSC subjects together with either music performance or audio electives, students at AIM High obtain their senior secondary HSC educational qualification with a music focus.

Currently, subjects offered include: Music 1, Music 2 and extension, English Advanced and standard, Visual Arts, Dance, Drama, Mathematics, Modern History, Business Studies, Society and Culture, Information Processes and Technology.


In 1969 Dr Peter Calvo started a business called the Sydney Spanish Guitar Centre, which was incorporated in 1987 as a proprietary company limited by shares.[7] In 1989 it changed its name to the Australian Institute of Guitar Limited. Its constitution was amended so that it became a public company limited by shares and by guarantee. In 1991 it changed its name to The Australian Institute of Music (AIM) and was registered as a public company limited by shares. In 1996 AIM became an organisation eligible for tax deductibility of donations and listed on the Register of Cultural Organisations maintained under the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 (Cth).

In 1989 AIM was accredited by the New South Wales Department of Education as a provider of tertiary courses providing a three‐year Diploma in Music. In 1995 it became accredited by the Department of Education for a four‐year Degree of Bachelor of Music.

In the early 2000s, AIM was registered as a Higher Education Provider. In fact AIM, since the early 2000s,had been operating robustly under its another internal sister corporate entity by the name of ' The Australian Institute of Management Sciences'. AIMS had since then been offering The Master of Arts Management's degree in Sydney and Asia in Singapore & Manila. It also ran MAM's degree via cyberspace i.e. online studies.

Virtual Students from as far as Europe and the Asia pacific region were enrolling for that MAM's degree courses fervently.

A few years later in 2005, AIM was in part sold to a new management & the new management decided to amalgamate that AIMS 'division' into AIM umbrella itself in running the MAM's degree.

After AIMS had been assimilated entirely into the new AIM corporate holdings, the new AIM management came to a decision to conduct the MAM's degree operating under AIM itself instead of going through the previously established AIMS division. Those years, AIMS was headed by Dr. Greg Whateley who was the Professor and Foundation Head. The AIMS'/ AIM's Master of Arts Management's degree was globally renowned for its unique MBA contents. This unique highly regarded MAM degree offered by AIMS/AIM had been gaining traction since the 2000s in attracting high caliber graduate students and working professionals globally in their quest to acquire and enhance their competencies in their professional career to the next level.

In 2006 AIM incorporated the Australian Academy of Dramatic Art (AADA) into its business entity. In 2007-2008, with the support of members of the theatre and education communities across Australia, AADA developed and submitted the Bachelor of Performance degree for accreditation to the NSW Department of Education and Training (DET). In 2009, AADA welcomed its first intake of Bachelor of Performance candidates.

In 2010 AIM was accredited by the NSW Department of Education and Training (DET) to provide the Bachelor of Entertainment Management.

In 2009 AIM integrated its Q Studio recording facilities from Goulborn St Darlinghurst into its main campus at Foveaux St Surry Hills.

In 2011, AIM expanded its teaching facilities to include classrooms and accompanying staff areas at 72 Mary St, Surry Hills NSW.

Productions and performances[edit]

Showcase Events - Each Year in May, AIM stages its major annual Showcase event, featuring the talents of students across many of its departments, such as 50 Years of Motown[9] opening May 2009 and A Day In The Life[10] opening May 2010.


As at January 2011 there are 1043 students enrolled at AIM.

Notable lecturers[edit]

Head of School: Dr Ian Bofinger[11]

  • Glen Phimister: International music engineer.[12]
  • Jamie Rigg: Musical Director of Strictly Dancing and Carols In The Domain. Has 30 years experience as a musician, producer, and director.[13]
  • Julian Gough: High school principal - saxophonist, composer, producer and arranger.
  • Jennifer Murphy: Starred in the title role in the Australian premiere production of Evita and worked as Artistic Director on many of the performance events during the 2008 Papal visit including the arrival at Barrangaroo.[14]
  • Eric Chapus: Multi award winning artist ‘Endorphin’.[15]
  • Daniel Belle: Australian Idol finalist.
  • Warren Thomson: Australian pianist, music editor, music educator and piano competition juror.
  • Larissa Burak: Ukrainian-Australian bandurist and mezzo-soprano singer, concert musician, soloist, and choir conductor.

Notable alumni[edit]

  • Toby Francis: Winner ‘8th Annual Cabaret Showcase’ in Sydney.[16]
  • Elisa Colla: Lead role in 2010/2011 musical Wicked in Sydney.[17]
  • Jessica Lingotti: Lead role in international touring stage show Burn The Floor.[18]
  • Tamara Jaber: Won a scholarship to the Australian Institute of Music for years 11 and 12, completing a Diploma for Music, at the same time also completing her HSC.
  • Casey Donovan: Winner of Australian Idol Season 2).[19]
  • Chris Sorbello: An Australian singer, songwriter and dancer currently signed to the Ministry of Sound label in Australia
  • Bianca Moon: The lead singer of the Australian Country Rock band The UnCommitted.
  • Chris Brooks: Australian rock, metal and fusion guitarist most noted for his debut instrumental album The Master Plan.
  • Erin Mortimer: A performer in the 2005 touring production of Grease -The Arena Spectacular. Also sang the national anthem at the 2006 Australia-Great Britain Rugby League Test in Sydney, and the State of Origin (game one) match held at ANZ Stadium in May 2008.
  • Tiffani Wood: An Australian singer-songwriter and former member of female pop group Bardot.
  • Evgeny Ukhanov: is a Ukrainian-Australian pianist and winner of 3rd prize in the Sydney International Piano Competition in 2000.
  • Balawan: Innovative musician and educator.[20]
  • Geoff Harvey: Honorary Master of Music, Australian Institute of Music was the Music Director of Channel 9 for 38 years.[21]


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°53′02.91″S 151°12′34.02″E / 33.8841417°S 151.2094500°E / -33.8841417; 151.2094500