Advance Australia Fair

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The National Anthem booth at the 2005 Floriade, Canberra - on the J. Verbeeck fairground organ.

Advance Australia Fair is the official national anthem of Australia.

Peter Dodds McCormick (c. 1834 -1916) wrote the music and the words for the song. It was first performed in 1878, but it only became Australia's official anthem in 1984.

Between 1878 and 1984, the song was used inside of Australia as a patriotic song. For a time the song announced the news from the Australian Broadcasting Commission. When Australia became a Federation in 1901, the song was sung by a choir of 10,000 people.

In 1977 there was a vote for the national anthem between four songs. The other three songs were:

Advance Australia Fair received 43.29% of the vote, defeating the three alternatives: Waltzing Matilda (28.28%), Song of Australia (9.65%), and the existing national anthem God Save the Queen (18.78%). However, it was not until 1984 that the national anthem was changed to reflect the popular vote.

Other songs and marches have been influenced by Advance Australia Fair, such as the Australian Vice-Regal salute.


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