Making music – student composers testing their scores

12 June 2017

Nelson Composers
Young composers Dana Buchanan, Kelly Greer, Abby Pinkerton, Xu Tang.

Four music composition students have been selected to take part in the annual Young Composers Workshop being held in Nelson in July. Dana Buchanan, Kelly Greer, Abby Pinkerton and Xu Tang are all studying composition at the University of Waikato Conservatorium of Music and are busy preparing their music scores for the five-day event.

Third year student Dana Buchanan says she’s looking forward to meeting students from other universities and interacting with other young composers from around the country, while PhD student Xu Tang says he’s especially looking forward to getting to know the mentors, the career composers who give their time as volunteer teachers. Honours year student Kelly Greer can’t wait to meet some of these iconic senior composers whose music she has studied.

The workshop is run by the Composers Association of New Zealand and is free to students selected to attend. All participants live in at a hostel in Nelson and University of Waikato composition Associate Professor Martin Lodge says the social aspects and chance for networking are one of those most important features of the event. “Musical experience is gained and friendships are forged that can last a lifetime,” he says.

For Abby Pinkerton, now in her honours year of study, the opportunity to have her work performed by a professional group to an audience of other critical but supportive professionals is the big draw card. “It’s the next step towards getting my music out there,” she says.

The workshop is funded by Creative New Zealand, CANZ The Composers Association of New Zealand, and APRA.