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AWE Emerging Composer Recipient announced

Ahead of At the World’s Edge Festival’s 2023 programme announcement on 1 June, SOUNZ is thrilled to announce that Georgina Palmer has been selected as the 2023 AWE Emerging Composer.

Chosen through a nationwide selection process open to composers 20 years and younger, Georgina will receive five months of personalised composition mentoring from Salina Fisher to write a string chamber work for premiere within this year’s AWE Festival in addition to multiple performances in schools throughout the Central Lakes region. Georgina will also take up residence at AWE, attending performances in Queenstown, Cromwell and Wānaka, working with the musicians performing her piece, and personally introducing the work within festival performances.

Festival Director Justine Cormack says, “We are thrilled that Georgina Palmer will be our Emerging Composer for this year’s AWE festival. It will undoubtedly be a valuable opportunity for Georgina to receive personalised mentoring from Salina Fisher over these next five months and we look forward to seeing and hearing what she composes in the process. We send our heartfelt congratulations to Georgina and look forward to welcoming her to AWE in October!”

Georgina is currently dividing her time between living in New Zealand and Australia as she studies composition at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music and her composing achievements to date are impressive - winning the 2020 SOUNZ NZCF Choral Composition Competition, winning the 2022 Audrey Reid Composition Prize, a commission from the National Youth Brass Band of New Zealand and having a work performed in the Celebrating Global Harmony Through Music concert at Carnegie Hall in NYC.

Georgina says, “I am absolutely thrilled to be selected as this year's AWE Emerging Composer. Getting to play a key role in a New-Zealand-made classical music festival in one of the most beautiful parts of our country is a privilege. I can't wait to start the mentoring process with Salina Fisher; I will undoubtedly learn and grow as a composer immensely during this process. I'm also very much looking forward to sharing my commissioned work at AWE among leading national and international musicians and composers, as well as in local schools, where I hope to inspire some younger composers in the making.”

“SOUNZ is proud to partner with At the World’s Edge Festival again to facilitate this wonderful opportunity for young composers, now in its second year. Georgina couldn’t be a more deserving recipient, and we look forward to hearing the music that she creates”, says SOUNZ Chief Executive Diana Marsh

For more information about the festival, visit, and be sure to sign up for AWE updates to receive the full AWE 2023 programme announcement on June 1.

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