Cicada History and Background

In 2009 CiCADA International Inc was established as a not-for-profit association in partnership with The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Arts Board of the Australia Council for the Arts to support young Indigenous, marginalised and disadvantaged artists and communities. 

Since then, CiCADA has earned a reputation as a specialist in its field, gaining national and international recognition for its brand of creative community engagement and advocacy. CiCADA is committed to contributing to both policy and the body of knowledge around gender & cultural equity in the Australian music industry. 

In 2010 The Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts contracted CiCADA to deliver a series of workshops & mentoring programs for Indigenous artists participating in the Federal Government's Breakthrough initiative.

By 2011 & 2012 CiCADA was represented in the Indigenous Contemporary Music Review through the Department of Culture and the Arts in Western Australia. CiCADA's recommendation to develop strategies for connection with industry professionals and artists from the East Coast was adopted as a major priority.

In 2012 CiCADA was registered as a Charity and granted DGR Status.

In 2013 after 2 years of extensive consultation with Indigenous organisations, service providers, industry practitioners and artists, CiCADA launched the Pilot program Nurlu Jalbingan in the Kimberley. The program introduced emerging and mid-career Aboriginal artists to experienced industry professionals from the East Coast to develop essential music business skills to enhance their careers.

In 2014 The Healing Foundation partnered with CiCADA to deliver the songwriting program Empowerment through Expression in Western Australia and the Kimberley.

In 2015 CiCADA developed the COCOON program, a community intervention designed for marginalized and/or at risk community groups, CALD groups and Indigenous groups.

In 2016 CiCADA was represented at Music Australia's Round table at Customs House in Sydney and APACA (Australian Performing Arts Conference) at the Melbourne Arts Centre.

In 2017 SKIPPING A BEAT, assessing the state of gender equality in the Australian Music Industry, was published. The report was initiated by CiCADA President Vicki Gordon, funded with the support of MEAA (Media Entertainment & Arts Alliance) and undertaken by researchers from Sydney University & Deakin University in Victoria. 

CiCADA co-convened Music Australia's first Round table panel on diversity and inclusivity at Customs House in Sydney.

In 2018 CiCADA co-hosted SET THE STANDARD, an open forum with TWITTER Australasia to address some of the inequities facing women entering and working in the Australian Music .    

CiCADA produced the inaugural Australian Women in Music Awards (AWMA) at the Brisbane Powerhouse in QLD with the support of the QLD Government and CANON. AWMA is supported by First Nations, Multi Cultural, corporate, community, industry and education partners. 

In 2019 CiCADA continues to lobby for gender and cultural equity for women and youth in all areas of the Australian Music Industry. The 2nd AWMA's are scheduled to take place in October this year.