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


SOUNZ Contemporary Award 2008

SOUNZ Contemporary Award 2008

Wax Lyrical, a work written by young New Zealand composer Chris Gendall for an octet of flute, clarinet, harp, piano, and string quartet, has won the 2008 SOUNZ Contemporary Award, the most prestigious annual award for ‘contemporary classical’ composition in New Zealand.

Chris is the youngest composer to win the prestigious award since it was instituted in 1998. The announcement was made and award presented to the composer as part of the APRA-hosted event in Auckland Town Hall which included announcement of the 2008 Maioha and 2008 APRA Silver Scroll Awards.

He was commissioned to write Wax Lyrical by American ensemble Brave New Works with funding from the Mellon Foundation and it was first performed by the ensemble in a series of concerts across New York State in April this year. "The title 'wax lyrical' refers to an exuberant and energetic sensibility in the work," Chris told us.

Gendall returned from his studies in the United States for the Auckland occasion. He is currently completing a DMA at Cornell University, New York. “A DMA is essentially a PhD but specific to practical musicians. It has allowed me to balance composerly pursuits with academic ones. The entire experience has been great: working intensely on my music; teaching and studying for greater academic rigour; and living in the northeast USA – which has been an education in itself! I think I'm yet to become an 'ex-pat' composer, although my international experience has certainly broadened my concept of who I am as a musician.”

Gendall has already gathered an impressive number of awards in his burgeoning career: including being the inaugural winner of the Todd Foundation–NZSO Young Composer award in 2005 with So It Goes and winning an ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award for Moto Perpetuo. He has been involved with three Asian Composers League Festivals, including being the New Zealand entrant and prizewinner for the Young Composers Competition in Israel. As well as prizes in 2001 and 2002 he was placed first in the 2003 Lilburn Trust Awards, and was awarded the 2002 Wellington City Council Prize for Music.

The other two works selected as finalists for the 2008 SOUNZ Contemporary Award were Remote Presence for solo piano by Chris Cree Brown and Requiem Concerto by Peter Scholes for chamber ensemble, solo violin and voices.


Further information:
SOUNZ, the Centre for New Zealand Music (Toi te Arapuoru) is a national charitable trust committed to promoting, fostering and providing the music of New Zealand composers. It receives major funding from Creative New Zealand, APRA and through PPNZ. Its vision is: Created in New Zealand, heard around the world!

The SOUNZ Contemporary Award , established in 1998, is a project of APRA , Australasian Performing Right Association and SOUNZ and is awarded to a work written by New Zealand composers who are members of APRA which have been premiered in the previous year. The works can be for solo, chamber, ensemble, choral, opera, orchestral, electro-acoustic or any combination of these. The Centre for NZ Music convenes a jury to judge the entries on creative and artistic criteria including compositional excellence and inspiration. The annual award consists of a cash prize (currently $3,000) and a trophy designed and made by Auckland sculptor Sarah Smuts Kennedy.

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

Kakī: World’s Rarest Wading Bird Released In Mackenzie Basin

Conservation Minister Maggie Barry says the birds will add to the 60 released into the Tasman valley earlier this month, significantly boosting the wild population. More>>


IHC Tribute: Colin Meads

"While Colin is best known for rugby, to us he is one of a small number of distinguished IHC New Zealand Life Members recognised for their significant support for people with intellectual disabilities," says IHC Chief Executive Ralph Jones. More>>


Howard Davis Review: Tilting at Turbines - The Trip to Spain

Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon have now both broken the Big Fifty barrier, which seems to have brought a whole new level of angst to their midlife adventures ... More>>

Review: A Rose By Any Other Name Would Smell As Sweet

The Royal New Zealand Ballet has accepted the challenge of this heart-touching tragedy and largely succeeded. More>>


NZ's First Male IAAF Gold: Tom Walsh's Historic Shot Put Victory

Although feeling very sore but with a great feeling Tom Walsh took his place as number one on the victory dais to receive his much deserved gold medal. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Q&A: Hard To Find Books

"Unfortunately we are in crisis and this friendly dinosaur faces extinction… Our only hope is to try and raise funds to buy the building and restore it to its glory, either fully funded or with a viable deposit." More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland