Young Baritone Awarded Scholarship
Young Baritone with Outstanding Potential Awarded Scholarship
Young Dunedin based baritone Kawiti Waetford has been awarded the inaugural Kiri Te Kanawa Scholarship as the singer judged to have outstanding potential for an international singing career. He was selected from 15 very talented young singers including 5 who had contested the 2012 Lexus Song Quest Finals. They all participated in the recent national Lexus Song Quest masterclass tour conducted by distinguished Welsh tenor Dennis O’Neill (the chief judge for the Song Quest). The scholarship sponsored by the Kiri Te Kanawa Foundation carried a cash prize of $15,000 for international study.
Announcing the result Dennis O’Neil commented that the standard of singing in the 2012 Lexus Song Quest Final was higher and more consistent than most other international competitions that he had judged. “I relished the opportunity to work again with the 5 outstanding young singers who were in the final along with other non finalists. I was impressed with their ability to respond and develop through the master-classes themselves. I was also impressed with their great talent and musicianship”.
“Making the decision about this award at the conclusion of the master-classes was no easy task but having considered firstly voice, then musicianship, stage charisma and the ability to connect strongly with an audience I was pleased to award the scholarship to Kawiti Waetford. I have very high hopes to this young man’s development and emergence as one of New Zealand’s great opera singers.”