Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search


NZ Teen Wins International Songwriter' Award

New Zealand Teen Wins International Songwriting Award

The International Songwriting Competition (ISC) is pleased to announce its winners for its 2004 annual competition. Called "the songwriting competition to take note of" by the New York Times, ISC received over 11,000 entries in its third year.

Gin Wigmore (18) from Auckland won the overall Grand Prize for her song "Hallelujah," which was entered into the Teen category. Her prizes include $10,000 US cash and over $30,000 US in merchandises and services.

This is the second year in a row that a New Zealander has won the overall Grand Prize. Maori artist Moana Maniapoto won the 2003 competition with her song "Moko". Songwriters from 77 countries participated in the 2004 competition, and remarkably, New Zealand (with its population of only four million) had winners in four out of 16 categories. Along with rugby and the America's Cup, New Zealand can now add songwriting to its list of international accomplishments.

"We're amazed at the consistently high level of songwriting coming out of New Zealand in the last few years," states ISC founder and director Candace Avery, "The winning song 'Hallelujah' is an example of songwriting at its best, and the fact that the songwriter, Gin Wigmore, is only 18 yrs. old makes it even more impressive. Not only is she a wonderful songwriter, but she also has the most unique voice. She has an amazing future as an artist."

Sharon Lingham of Crown Limousines, New Zealand, who acts as an ambassador for international and national entertainers said that New Zealand had so much to offer- the most beautiful place on planet, a country full of talent of all ages, leading the world in so many things.

"Look at New Zealand's history-from scientists, heart surgeons, movie makers, mountain climbers like Sir Edmund Hillary- I'm so proud of everyone of them", said Sharon.

Sharon is no exception as she has No.1 position for 'celebrity update' site on internet- Sharon's Global Celebrity Update.

Grand Prize winner Gin Wigmore wrote "Hallelujah" when she was 17 yrs. old. This intensely personal song (it was written for her father who died of cancer) reflects a vulnerability and honesty that is stunning. Her lyrics, coupled with her unique voice and the song's haunting melody, belie her age and display a maturity of "an old soul." The song, which resonated overwhelmingly with the judges, is memorable for its simplicity and beauty.

Virtually unknown as a songwriter and relatively new at her craft, Gin is at the very beginning of her career as a songwriter and singer. A gifted artist with a wonderfully bright future, Gin exemplifies the mission of ISC - to discover new talent and to provide the opportunity for international recognition and exposure for an artist whose songwriting achievements stand out amongst all others.

Gin is also the First Place winner in the Teen category with her song "Angelfire." As the First Place winner of the Teen category, Gin receives an additional $1,000 US cash and other prizes, including a full scholarship to Berklee College of Music's Summer Performance Program.

New Zealand winners include:

"Hallelujah" Overall Grand Prize winner - Gin Wigmore "Angelfire" First Place winner, Teen category - Gin Wigmore "Samulai" Second Place winner, World Music category - Opetaia Foai "Not Many (The Remix)" Third Place winner, R&B/Hip-Hop category ­ Scribe/Peter Wadams/David Dallas/Demetrius Savelio "Let Me Be Your Lover" Honorable Mention, AAA/Roots/Americana category - Derek Solomon "Ko Te Tohu" Honorable Mention,World Music category - Ruia Aperahama "Pate Pate Radio Remix" Honorable Mention,World Music category - Opetaia Foai/Malcolm Smith

For a complete list of winners, please go to

Judges for the 2004 competition included many of the music industry's top executives and recording artists:

Monte Lipman (President, Universal Records); Sean "P. Diddy" Combs; Aaron Lewis (Staind); John Ondrasik (Five For Fighting); Bo Diddley; Clint Black; David Hidalgo (Los Lobos); Branford Marsalis; Darryl McDaniels (Run D.M.C.); Peter Furler (Newsboys); Taj Mahal; Sully Erna (Godsmack); Macy Gray; Stacey Earle; Scott Kirkland (The Crystal Method); Michael Gudinski (Chairman, Mushroom Group of Companies); Alan Meltzer (CEO, Wind-Up Records); Tara Griggs-Magee (Executive VP Gospel/Urban Music, Sony Records); Michael McDonald (President, ATO Records); Tracy Gershon (Sr. Dir A&R/Artist Dev, Sony Records Nashville); Chris Parr (VP of Music Programming & Talent Relations, CMT); Peter Asher (Co-President, Sanctuary Artist Management); Kim Stephens (VP A&R, Lava Records); Barbara Sedun (VP Creative, EMI Music Publishing Canada) and Leib Ostrow (CEO, Music For Little People).

ISC is now accepting entries for 2005. Entry forms are available at

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis Review: From Free Press to Fancy Dress - Spielberg's The Post

Stephen Spielberg's The Post is an opportune newsroom drama in which a corrupt Republican president wages war against the "liberal media," as its plucky proprietor risks economic and legal ruin to bring the Pentagon Papers to public light. Its true protagonist is publisher Katharine Graham, a stringently diplomatic businesswoman, reluctantly compelled to take an overtly political stance in the interests of democracy and freedom of the press. More>>

Howard Davis Review: The Black Dog of Empire - Joe Wright's Darkest Hour'

On the eve of England's contorted efforts to negotiate its ignominious retreat from Europe and the chaotic spectacle of the Tory party ratifying its undignified departure from a union originally designed to prevent another World War, there has been a renewed appetite for movies about 1940. More>>

Howard Davis Review: Anger Begets Anger - Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

For fans of what Ricky Gervais termed "number movies" (Seven Samurai, The Magnificent Seven, Ocean's 11, Se7en), Martin McDonagh's latest offering will be a welcome addition to the roster. The Irish playwright turned screenwriter and director has produced another quirky and darkly comic tragedy that evolves around the futility of anger and grief, retribution and revenge. More>>

Howard Davis: Sexting in George Dawe's Genevieve - Part I

Te Papa's permanent collection includes an enormous oil painting by the English artist George Dawe called Genevieve (from by a poem by S.T. Coleridge entitled 'Love') that was prominently featured in the 2013 exhibition Angels & Aristocrats. Compare the massive immensity of the bard's gorgeously gilded harp with the stubby metallic handle of the Dark Knight's falchion, both suggestively positioned at crotch-level. Dawe's enormous canvas invokes a whole history of blushing that pivots around a direct connection to sexual arousal. More>>


Ethnomusicology: Malian ‘Desert Blues’ Revolutionaries To Storm WOMAD

Malian band Tinariwen (playing WOMAD NZ in March 2018) are a true musical revolutionaries in every sense. Active since 1982, these nomadic Tuareg or ‘Kel Tamashek’ (speakers of Tamashek) electric guitar legends revolutionised a traditional style to give birth to a new genre often called ‘desert blues’. They also have a history rooted deeply in revolution and fighting for the rights of their nomadic Tamashek speaking culture and people. More>>

Gordon Campbell: Best New Music Of 2017

Any ‘best of list’ has to be an exercise in wishful thinking, given the splintering of everyone’s listening habits... But maybe… it could be time for the re-discovery of the lost art of listening to an entire album, all the way through. Just putting that idea out there. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland