FREAKISHLY talented Gladstone teen Heath Lancaster could be anything - and everything.
The 18-year-old has already made a name for himself as one of the nation's Gen Next rugby stars - but for the coming couple of weeks he'll focus on his rise and rise as a singer/songwriter.
Heath is one of a select few chosen to attend The Academy - a boot camp at Tamworth for people in the music industry.
Only 28 people - across Australia and even India - will be accorded this opportunity in the senior class for 2020.
Not that Heath's selection is by any stretch a fluke - it's come on the back of enterprise, hard work and the gift of talent.
"I had to apply online and submit one of my songs, some lyrics, and a bit of information about myself," Heath told the Argus.
The song he sent was Reason Why - listen to it here:
Heath's musical progression has been evolutionary.
"I started playing the guitar when I was about 11 years old, and have been performing since then too in Kempsey at the Oddfellows Hall open mic nights," he said.
Heath is wide-eyed and open-eared about the chance to grow in Tamworth.
The intensive Academy course begins on Saturday and it will see students learn about all aspects of the music business, musical performance, songwriting, promotion, and recording, among other aspects of making a career in music, all from top industry insiders.
The Academy welcomes students from India for the first time in the course's history, with other students travelling from Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria, NSW, Queensland and the Northern Territory.
"The Academy is a premier educational opportunity for those wanting a career in the music industry," The Academy director Lyn Bowtell said.
Heath - who describes his style as "a bit folky with a coastal vibe - easy listening" - can't wait.
"I just want to learn everything about the music industry, and the networking as well will be important," he said.
"I'm just really looking forward to the whole experience of mixing with professional industry leaders."
After completing Year 12 at St Paul's College, Kempsey, in 2019 - Heath has already sketched plans for the New Year.
"I'm looking at taking a gap year in Sydney. Playing rugby for the Waringah Rats and doing music gigs on the Northern Beaches," he said.
Like his music, rugby drips with promise for the five-eighth who was selected in the Australian Under 18s side for the World School Sevens tournament in Auckland.
The Kempsey Cannonballs first grader loves the sport, but for January at least - the guitar rather than the footy boots will be the tool of choice.
The Academy general manager Roger Corbett said students found their 'tribe' during each course, and the education they receive and relationships they form during their time together were invaluable, with most groups staying in contact for years, even decades after they'd graduated.
"As well as the world class tutors, songwriters, and industry professionals that the students are able to meet and learn from, the relationships they form are priceless for their development as artists," he said.