The Ross Lipson Award is a joint initiative of Sweethearts Foundation and Queenscliff Music Festival to acknowledge and encourage a local female working within the music industry, who has/will continue to develop and support emerging artists in the local music scene and the region.

Who is Ross Lipson?

Ross Lipson founded the Sweethearts in 1989. Since then the band has grown from a small social group of teachers and students to an internationally recognised industry-based program with experiences and opportunities that include performances at the Montreux Jazz Festival, Porretta Soul Festival and festivals across Australia, Europe and the USA as well as collaborations with renowned artists such as Gil Askey, Bernard Purdie, Vivian Sessoms and Pee Wee Ellis.

For 25 years Ross created a unique world leading music program for young female performers from the region, linking learning and professional delivery in the industry through a Certificate IV music qualification.

What is the Prize?

  • $1000 worth of products depending on the winner donated by A&B music
  • $1000 cash – Provided by Sweethearts Foundation Board
  • Plaque donated by the Sweethearts Foundation Board
  • Festival Tickets for the winner provided by Queenscliff Music Festival

Selection Criteria

  • Barwon South West Resident (Geelong/Surf Coast/Bellarine)
  • Female
  • Shown excellence in any music industry area (Performing, Management, Audio, Promotion, Teaching, Admin etc.)
  • Promotes and supports local music industry
  • Actively gives back to youth in the area by sharing knowledge and skills / donating time etc.
  • Encouraged to continue working in and for young people & music in the local community.

The Selection process

  • A call for nominations will be advertised in October outlining dates for nominations to be received.
  • Nominations from public to be emailed to for consideration.
  • A panel will determine the award recipient in early November. The panel will be made up of at at least four people including members of the Sweethearts Foundation Incorporated, the Sweethearts Music Excellence Fund, The Sweethearts Musical Director, A Queenscliff Music Festival representative, previous winner(s) as well as music industry personnel from the region.
  • Successful award winners will be required to complete an acquittal/report to the Sweethearts Foundation on the use of the award.

Award presentation

  • Public announcement of winner and presentation of award at the Queenscliff Music Festival, immediately following the Sweethearts performance.