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Wellington and Hutt heats coming up on 29 June

Media Release: Smokefreerockquest 25 years of music success – Wellington and Hutt heats coming up on 29 June.

Blue Cheese and Bakers Eddy could be the hottest new sounds on the Kiwi music scene if they hit the big time via the time-honoured pathway of Smokefreerockquest.

Now in its 25th year, New Zealand’s only nationwide, live, all original youth music competition is about to kick off in Wellington and Hutt, with the heats scheduled for 12 noon Saturday 29 June at Wellington High School. Tickets $10, available at the venue.

Around 700 entries are expected to go through regional heats and finals in 23 towns from Invercargill to Whangarei. Founder and Director Glenn Common says while much has changed in the 25 years that SFRQ has been running, there are some things that remain the same:

“The enthusiasm of young people for their music, and the way they respond to having a platform to perform to their peers is one of the constants,” he says. “These days they can put their video clips up on YouTube, but that hasn't taken the thrill out of getting up on stage in front of a real live crowd.”

The Wellington and Hutt bands performing at Wellington High School next Saturday are:
The Butterfly Effect . . Raphael House Rudolf Steiner Area School
Illucid . . . . Newlands College
Blue Cheese . . . Hutt Valley High School
Angel . . . . Raphael House Rudolf Steiner Area School
The Over Cover . . . Newlands College
Bird on a Wire . . . Onslow College
Point Of View . . . Hutt Valley High School
Alibi Highway . . . Wellington College
Shift . . . . Wellington College
Until Autumn . . . Tawa College, Aotea College
Armad . . St Patrick's Coll, Naenae Coll, Hutt Valley HS, Sacred Heart Coll
109 Db . . . . Hutt Valley High School
Famous Last Words . . Samuel Marsden Collegiate School
5th Element . . . Hutt International Boys' School
Elephantine . . . Onslow College
Blurred Edge . . . Hutt Intermediate, Hutt Valley HS
Adagio . . . . St Mary's College (Wellington)
Red Town . . . Wellington Girls' Coll, Onslow Coll, Wellington Coll
Greenroom . Hutt International Boys' School, Tawa Coll, Paraparaumu Coll, Aotea Coll
Spectrum . . . Aotea College
Anymalle . . . Wellington College, Kelburn Normal School
Bakers Eddy . . . Onslow College
Legalo . . . . Wellington East Girls' College
Lauren Armstrong . . . Sacred Heart College (Lower Hutt)
Leen . . . . St Mary's College (Wellington)
Josh Dominikovich . . St Bernard's College
Sarah Whitaker . . . St Mary's College (Wellington)
Heather Victoria . . . Chilton St James School
Vanessa Cone . . . Paraparaumu College
Gemma Jacobson . . Chilton St James School
Ezra Taulamana . . . St Mary's College (Wellington)
Esmay-Rose Goodman . . Paraparaumu College
Alana Kirby . . . Hutt Valley High School
Tyler . . . . Onslow College .
Jacko . . . . Hutt International Boys' School
Raquel . . . . Onslow College
Black vinyl . . . St Bernard's College, Hutt International Boys’ School
Unnatural selection . . Naenae College, Wainuiomata High School
Kybo Mein Doobage . . Scots College
Mantis . . Wellington High School & Com Ed Centre, Scots Coll, St. Patrick’s Coll (Kilbirnie)
Fast Forward . . . Hutt Valley High School
Ground Zero . . . Hutt International Boys' School
Want A Reason . . . Heretaunga College
Harbour Lane . . . Hutt Valley High School
Reciprocity . . . Wellington High School & Com Ed Centre
Urban roots . . . Naenae College
The Cold Angel . . . Hutt International Boys' School
Feggae Runk . . . Wellington High School & Com Ed Centre
The Abandoned Psycho Movement . Wellington High School & Com Ed Centre

This year there are separate categories for solo/duo acts and bands. The top two solo/duos will be announced at the heats. They will play off at the regional finals and will both go into the judging pool for the national final.

“We’ll have regional winners in the solo/duo section and the band section, and the same at the national final,” Glenn explains. “There will be more winners and more prizes and it means neither category will feel overlooked.”

Glenn says this change has been made in response to comments from entrants and teachers, and brings SFRQ more in line with NCEA assessments where bands are assessed separately.

The regional events run every weekend until 13 July, then the top regional bands and solo/duos submit videos for selection for the national final in Auckland on 28 September. Smokefreerockquest, powered by Rockshop, has national winners’ prize packages for bands and the solo/duos, that include musical gear to a total value of $13,000 from NZ Rockshops and their suppliers, inclusion on the NZ On Air Kiwi Hit Disc, radio promotional support, and video play on youth music channel FOUR. There is also the MAINZ Scholarship for outstanding musicianship, the APRA Lyric Award, the Lowdown Best Song Award, the Smokefree Women’s Musicianship Award and the Skinny Mobile People’s Choice voted by text with the opportunity to open the SFRQ National final.

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