Chamber Quartet Auckland Success

June 15, 2021 at 2:12 PM

The New Zealand Chamber Music Contest, now in its 56th year, has always celebrated the very best of classical music students working closely in small ensembles, owning their own parts while communicating with other parts and players with careful eyes and ears. In recent years, the College has had good success in the contest, carefully selecting students, repertoires and tutors, with close attention from HOD Music, Miss Mary Lin.

To maximise the strength of our elite musicians, the music department collaborates with students from other schools to give students their best opportunity for developing their musicianship and ensemble skills with the best tutors and masterclass opportunities. At the recent competition, our students were involved in both mixed and Saint Kentigern only chamber groups.

Once again, this year, our musicians scooped a number of awards at the Auckland District Finals:

  • Adjudicator’s Award: Amy Chen (Violin) with her string quartet ‘Russian Empire’ playing Shostakovitch’s String Quartet No. 8 Movement 1 and 2
  • KBB Award: Evan Metcalfe (Horn) with his brass quintet ‘Petrus’ playing Victor Ewald’s Brass Quintet No.5 in Bb Minor, Op.1
  • Highly Commended: Brendon Tsoi (Cello) with his piano trio ‘Oddities’ playing Vox Balaenae by George Crumb
  • Best Performance of a New Zealand Work: Saint Kentigern’s GoodFellas Quartet
  • Auckland District Winner: Saint Kentigern’s GoodFellas Quartet

This is the first time that the College has won the Auckland Finals in a highly competitive environment that included 70 group entries from all over Auckland. The GoodFellas Quartet is a mix of piano and percussion with Charles Sang and Sunny Le on piano and Jason Wong and Alex Bian on percussion.  The students performed renowned composer Jenny McLeod’s composition ‘Music for Four.’ Adjudicator Richard Mapp said, ‘This was such an enjoyable performance, well done to all. It fizzed along the whole way. Great attention to detail and all very polished.’ Fellow Adjudicator, Somi Kim said, ‘Incredibly tight ensemble playing and a mature understanding of balance and texture. You had me smiling the whole time!’

Our special thanks to our percussion tutor, Eric Renick who is also Principal Percussion at APO, for all his effort and patience coaching the quartet. The quartet will be competing in the Northern Regionals (Northland, Auckland, Waikato districts winners and selected groups) on Saturday 26 June at Diocesan’s Performing Arts Centre.

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