Anna Lunoe on SAE: ‘If you’re an artist, make no mistake, you’re a business’

Get the latest from Beat


Anna Lunoe on SAE: ‘If you’re an artist, make no mistake, you’re a business’

Words by Joanne Brookfield

There’s no question that Australian DJ and songwriter Anna Lunoe is an international success. As a big stage DJ, name a festival and she’s played it – Coachella, Lollapalooza, Big Day Out, Splendour In The Grass and Field Day.

She’s known as being the first woman to mix sound for Ministry of Sound Australia, was approached by Zane Lowe to work with the likes of Dr Dre, Elton John and Drake on the launch of Apple Music, and hosts her own weekly show, Hyperhouse, on that platform as well, giving her a global audience in over 100 countries.

Then there are her own EPs and other projects, too, like creating runway beats for Prada, Chanel and Louis Vuitton. “I’ve done things that never in my wildest dreams would I think I could have achieved, ever,” she tells Beat, and while she’s justifiably proud of that, she knows her path through the industry would have been a smoother one if there had been a relevant course to guide her.

It’s why she has teamed up with SAE Creative Media Institute as the ambassador for their new, fast-tracked Bachelor of Music degree. “There’s so much to the industry and it’s always changing, so the more you know, the better you can navigate it. I just really wish that I had something like this behind me when I went into music. It was a bit of a wild ride, and it was fun, but I definitely spent a few years going down rabbit holes, just because I didn’t know any better,” she says.

The two-year course has been created in consultation with industry professionals. This means the electives are highly relevant to the real world and will provide students – which extend from those straight out of high school to experienced industry people upskilling – with both sought-after skills and work placement opportunities through SAE’s industry partners.

A bachelor’s degree condensed into two years also means graduates are out working in the industry sooner. “I think it’s really valuable to have something like this to create a framework and a blueprint to work towards your goals,” says Lunoe.

“There’s so many different paths you can take within it, and they really customise the course towards your goals,” she notes. To that end, SAE’s Bachelor of Music degree has an array of electives to choose from, covering everything from songwriting and music business to studio music production, and offers the opportunity to specialise in one of four pathways including songwriting and music production; electronic music production; music industry and business; and creative musicianship.

Whether students see themselves on stage in front of thousands, like Lunoe, or working in the many facets behind the scenes, the course is suitable for aspiring songwriters, music producers, DJs, artist managers, content creators and music entrepreneurs.

“If you’re an artist, make no mistake, you’re a business. It’s the music business. Your art is your business, and you need to understand about the business side.”

Lunoe moved to Los Angeles in 2012 to take her career to the next level, where she experienced instances when she didn’t know what to do and as a result, there were times when she signed deals or agreed to things that were not in her best interest.

“I feel if I had someone to ask, I could have avoided some situations,” she says of how important a course like this can be for future musicians. “It gives you a well rounded understanding of what’s involved when you go to monetise your work, when you go to monetise your skills. Making bad decisions on the business side can really negatively affect your artistic drive or even stop you from doing what you want, so having a decent understanding of the business is very important”.

SAE’s fast-tracked Bachelor of Music degree is taking enrolments now at their Adelaide, Brisbane, Byron Bay, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth campuses.

The future of music is you. Find out more here.

This article was made in partnership with SAE Creative Media Institute.