Australia Council for the Arts Approval

australian council arts logo

Dear Ms Suren,

Congratulations on your successful application to the Australia Council for the Arts. We have approved $19,930.00 for the following purpose: To make an album of original songs with contemporary Western and Turkish folk music influences

You were successful in a very competitive environment and we look forward to receiving updates on the project’s development.

Happy, inspired 2016... it’s been ages since I last blogged.

I’ve been busy making the album that set me off on an epic journey from Sydney to Cairns to Istanbul, experiencing the best couple of years of my life so far. I have received many gifts, both rock-star grand in nature and humble. Learning to receive wasn’t easy for a person more accustomed to giving. That’s what these last couple of years has in part been about. I came to realise that when you give you’re in control and when you receive, you dance a much more vulnerable, unpredictable dance. Also, I understood that when you allow someone to give you something, it develops their bond of love towards you. Receiving is in essence the truest, heart-opening act of generosity.

I got a huge gift in 2014, just after I’d thrown in the towel with making my album. My fourth (and the sworn last) application to the Australian arts council, which I’d applied for before my decision to quit, got funded! It was through the generous support and grant writing experience of my dear sister from another mister, my mentor and album’s arranger Natalia Mann that I’d managed to succeed in this round. The council approved an exciting $19,930.00 for us to write and record the album I’d been envisioning for the last couple of years.

I was both thrilled and confused; at a fork in the road and longing to go home to Sydney from Istanbul, and return to my comfort zone. Yet I also knew I couldn’t back out, just as I’d reached the very point that I’d dreamed of getting to years before. This is precisely the point where I could have let it all go, but I decided instead to open my heart, and receive. It was the moment where the doorway to many other blessings opened – a green light…