30 Nov 1878 - 'Advance Australia Fair' first performed

On 30 November 1878 Advance Australia Fair was performed for the first time.

The song was written by Peter Dodds McCormick, a Sydney school teacher, who was interested in choral music and all things Scottish. Earlier in the year he had attended a concert of national anthems and, dismayed by the lack of an Australian song, he began composing one on the bus on the way home. Advance Australia Fair was performed at the inauguration of the Commonwealth of Australia on January 1 1901 but did not become the official national anthem until 1984.

Further compositions

The attached documents were found by staff researching WWI records in our collection.

Images 1 & 2: In the Premier's Department Letters Received Received McCormick sent this song An Australian Hymn to Premier Holman for his use. Whether it was used is unknown.

Image 3: This composition Are We Fainthearted? No! is also possibly by McCormick; it is written and composed by "Amicus" which is also part of the calling card in Image 1.

Published on 
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