Success for New Zealand Music Commission Mentees …
Looking back over last year (2012) the NZMC was very pleased to see evidence throughout the country of excellent outcomes arising from the musicians mentoring in schools programme.
"Whai", seven Year 13 students from Gisborne Girls' and Boys' High Schools performed at the Waiata Maori Music Awards Expo in September. Joeanne Walters, one of the organisers, commented "What a talented group of youth -conducting themselves professionally on and off stage. I'm still receiving praise about them from other students and teachers who just couldn't believe they were a high school band". (Three of the band have started at Mainz, 2013, and one at Waikato University.
"Whai" and many other Gisborne students have been mentored by Jimmy Christmas, Maisey Rika and Tama Waipara this year through the NZMC, Ministry of Education funded mentoring programme. Following the WMMA, Whai participated in the National Smokefree Pacifica Beats Final in Auckland. Here, first place was awarded to the amazing Zkabby Jams (Edgewater College), whose prize sees them performing at Raggamuffin 2013, recording and making a video courtesy of NZ on Air.
Other prizewinners at the SFPB Final included mentees from the schools mentoring programme; Stella & Georgia from Rotorua Lakes High School who received The APRA Songwriters Award, the Smokefree Mana Wahine Award, Te Taura Whiri Native Language Award and 2nd place overall. Chris Pascoe, their music teacher, has taken advantage of the Musicians Mentoring programme for many years and these girls have worked with Lisa Crawley, Anna Coddington, Jimmy Christmas and Maisey Rika over the years. The MAINZ Musicianship Award went to Eliza Benge (from Chiltern St James) also a mentee this year - with Iva Lamkum at Hutt Valley High and as a participant of the "Me Hanga to ake Waiata" workshops for combined schools in May.
But its not all about winning awards, the programme is as much about achievement, engagement with the curriculum and self esteem (as well as young people creating wonderful home grown music). ‘Business as usual' - for us is another wonderful recording coming in from one of our participating primary schools - have a listen to "Be Yourself" from some St Therese Primary students working with mentor Seth Haapu. By contrast Jon Toogood found himself at Alfriston College in Term 4, performing for level one students being assessed for a Level 1 Standards in recording technology. Imagine using a Shihad member for your NCEA assessment!
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