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The Alexander Clark Memorial Prize


In 1914, the sum of £255 was paid to the University of Adelaide by the Public Schools Decoration and Floral Societies for the purpose of founding a prize in memory of the late Inspector Alexander Clark.

Alexander Clark, a trained tonic solfaist, became an Inspector of South Australian schools in 1884. Under his guidance music secured a place in state supported schooling. Clark was an enthusiastic, committed educator who led by example and encouragement. He was warmly regarded and respected by his peers, teachers and school pupils.  He championed the cause of music, pushed for teacher training in the subject, and was its strongest advocate in the public domain.  Despite retrenchment from the inspectorate he continued his fight for music and was still teaching and conducting at the time of his death in 1913.  In 1890 he co-founded the Public School Decoration Society and inaugurated the annual Thousand Voices Choir concerts, which he skilfully conducted until his death.


The value of the Prize will be $300 per year, or such other amount as the Director of the Elder Conservatorium shall from time to time determine but such amount shall not exceed the income from the invested funds each year.

Eligibility & Selection of Candidate

The prize will be awarded on the recommendation of the Director of the Elder Conservatorium to a student in one of the following principal courses at the Elder Conservatorium: pianoforte, violin, organ, violoncello or singing.

All candidates must have regularly attended a South Australian Education Department school for at least two years.

If there is no candidate of sufficient merit in a given year then the prize shall lapse for that year.

If there is more than one candidate of sufficient merit, then the prize shall be shared equally.


These rules may be varied from time to time but the title and general purpose of the prize shall not be changed.

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