Bookings have just opened for the New Zealand String Quartet’s national tour called Woven Pathways. I’m delighted that they have included 2 of my works. They’ll play:
2023 is off to a busy start. I’ve just finished a work for the New Zealand Chamber Soloists and I’m delighted to now be writing a piece for solo percussion for Justin DeHart who teaches percussion at the University of Canterbury. I am one of several Aotearoa composers from whom he has commissioned works.
Some of my favourite musicians released albums that were finalists in this year’s music awards.
Hearty congratulations to Robert Ashworth and Sarah Watkins who won the award for their CD Moonstone which includes my difficult 1976 work of the same name.
The other finalists were NZTrio, and Bridget Douglas and Al Fraser whose CD Silver stone wood bone includes Hineraukatauri.
In April 2022 I moved from Ruakaka just south of Whāngarei in the far north to the far south of New Zealand. I’m now living in Portobello on the Otago Peninsula in Dunedin.
One of the other projects that has happened alongside this big move is my new website. I would very much like to thank Scilla Askew, and Walter von Bullmoos of Vital Colour for their amazing and diligent work in re-designing and updating this website.
On 10 June my new violin concerto Tai timu tai pari, completed during the Covid lockdown in April 2020, was premiered by the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra conducted by James Feddeck with concertmaster, Andrew Beer as soloist. Working with Andrew on the development of the work was a joy. He was very open to me making it hard!
The Te Waka Toi Awards celebrate and recognise the artistic excellence, achievement and contribution of Māori artists practising in customary and contemporary arts.
In April 2022, I was honoured to receive the 2021 Sir Kingi Ihaka Award which is given to kaumātua or kuia in recognition of their contribution to strengthening the continuity of Māori culture through their support of ngā Toi Māori.
Because of Covid the awards were held online and I recorded a video which was shown during the ceremony.
My close friend and fellow composer, Lyell Cresswell, died after a short illness on 19 March 2022. We first met in 1973 and have stayed in touch across the years and the globe throughout nearly 50 years since. He will be greatly missed both for his musical genius, and his loyal and entertaining friendship.
Our mutual friend Elizabeth Kerr, who has known Lyell since their university days, has written a lovely tribute.
Before he died he completed his autobiography. He has asked me, together with a couple of other friends, to see it through to publication.