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Smokefreerockquest 2018 Manawatu final results

Smokefreerockquest 2018 Manawatu final results

Palmerston North Girls’ High School two piece 'emo' band fruit juice parade took out first place at this year’s Manawatu Smokefreerockquest final at the Globe Theatre on Friday night.

Drummer of the Year 13 band, Tharushi Bowatte said their emotions were mixed on stage.

“We were excited and also sad knowing that this was our last Smokefreerockquest, but ultimately, it was a great time with my close friend Shannen. We are confident together, have a good stage presence and are comfortable communicating with the audience. Our songs are unique and true to us and I think everyone can engage with someone who is being themselves.”

The other member of fruit juice parade is Shannen Peterson (vocals, guitar) and the band won the regional final in 2017.

Second place in the band category went to indie band Daybreak from Waiopehu College. The members are Aaron Krivan (vocals, guitar), Ethan Roentgen (bass), Noah White (drums), Kiwa Samuels (guitar).

These two acts win musical gear from associate sponsors NZ Rockshops, and join solo-duo winners for Manawatu, Holly (Holly-May O’Sullivan) from Otaki College, and Katherine Keane from Fielding High School, in the opportunity to gain selection for the national final in September. (Note Fruit Juice Parade are classed as a band because they have a drummer.)

Smokefreerockquest Founder and director Glenn Common says there are more bands than ever before reaching the high standard required from national finalists.

“This means that real dedication is required to achieve the ‘stand out quality’ that the judges will be looking for,” he said. “They have to capture 15 minutes of their original material on video for selection as national finalists. It’s a process that demands creativity and musical ability, being able to work together as a group and having good organisational skills. What separates them out is perseverance – industry success seldom happens overnight.”

And Common encouraged those who didn’t make it through to stick with their music.
“Some bands and soloists will no doubt go on to success in the Kiwi music industry like SFRQ alumnae Kimbra, Marlon Williams and Shapeshifter, but for most of the young musicians SFRQ is about the experience of performing live on stage in a professional set up, meeting others who share their passion for music, and getting constructive and impartial feedback from more experienced musicians who are our judges and mentors.”

The full list of awards for Manawatu is:
Band 1: Fruit Juice Parade, Palmerston North Girls’ High School
Band 2: Daybreak, Waiopehu College
Band 3: Age of Steel, Horowhenua College
Solo/Duo 1: Holly (Holly-May O’Sullivan), Otaki College
Solo/Duo 2: Katherine Keane, Fielding High School
Smokefree Tangata Beats Award: Dub_C from Waiopehu College
ZM People’s Choice: Birds Make Me Anxious, Kapiti College
Smokefree Best Vocals: All members of Emerald, Waiopehu College
MAINZ Musicianship: Tharushi Bowatte, fruit juice parade
Best Song: “Serenity” by Sheva, Nga Tawa Diocesan School
Fatboy Style Award: Fusion, Manawatu College
APRA Lyric Writers’ Award: Leona Bradfield, Fielding High School
The Stomach Recording Artist Award: Birds Make Me Anxious, Kapiti College

The top regional bands and solo/duos submit footage for selection as finalists to play off at the Smokefreerockquest national final on Saturday September 22 at the Dorothy Winstone Centre in Auckland, preceded by the Smokefree Tangata Beats national final on Friday September 21.

The live events run from May 5 until July 6, and most regions will also be filmed for the hugely popular SFRQ webisodes (, fronted this year by NZ’s ‘First Bloke’ Clarke Gayford.

Smokefreerockquest, powered by Rockshop, has national winners’ prize packages for bands and solo/duo winners that includes $22,000 in Rockshop vouchers, $16,000 NZ On Air recording, video and promo package, a photo shoot and branding package from Imaginary Friends. There is also the Musicianship Award, the APRA (Australasian Performing Right Association) Lyric Award, Best Song Award, Smokefree Vocals Award, Fatboy Style Award, and the ZM People’s Choice.

Musical successes from Smokefreerockquest over its 30-year history include Broods, Leroy Clampitt, Kimbra, Aaradhna, Opshop, Evermore, Ladyhawke, Kids of 88, Die!Die!Die!, Joel Little, Tiny Ruins, Marlon Williams, Brooke Fraser, Anika Moa, Chelsea Jade, Nadia Reid, Aldous Harding, Steriogram, Phoenix Foundation, Devilskin, The Black Seeds, Bic Runga, and The Naked and Famous. Smokefree Tangata Beats standout successes include Alien Weaponry, Strangely Arousing Nesian Mystik, the only New Zealand band to ever have ten singles all certified gold or platinum.


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