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Meet the Team
Sarah Ballard

In our Meet the Team series, we invite you to sit down and learn more about each SOUNZ staff member. Today we introduce Sarah Ballard, our Digital and Administration Intern.

Can you tell us a bit about your family, kids, where you're from etc?

I live in Te Aro, Wellington, very close to everything including SOUNZ! My mother is from Scotland and my father from New Zealand. They live in the Waikato area. I have one sister who also lives in Waikato.

Where did you grow up? 

I grew up in Mercer, a village on the border of Waikato and Auckland. I have also lived in Auckland city and am now based in Wellington.

What do you enjoy doing when you are not working?

 I love to cook! And also to compose. They are both music. Taking advantage of the Wellington scenery is another favourite thing to do. I am also an avid reader.

 What is your earliest musical memory?

 Jamming on a tiny electric keyboard when I was a youngster. 

 How do you maintain work/life balance?

By the motto “work to live, not live to work”. I live quite simply materially speaking to ensure that I have time to spend on other endeavours that are also meaningful to me. I try to prioritise things outside of work like relationships, recreation, health e.t.c. and am always planning in advance how to fit these around everything else, and that way everything gets covered!

 What’s the last book you read?

The Srimad Bhagavatam, a Sanskrit literary classic published in 18 volumes, translated into English word for word. It’s a beautiful compilation describing great historical personalities and events, highlighting personal qualities, life lessons and transcendental relationships.

 What’s the best meal you have ever had?

It’s really hard to pin one down, but when visiting Mayapura in West Bengal, India, my friends and I went to the Jagganatha Temple there. The food was extraordinary and the way it was served was beyond anything I have experienced. The meal was served on large banana leaves and every preparation was exquisite. There were various vegetable preparations, including sukta (bitter melon), curry cooked with milk and banana blossoms, puris (puffed fried breads) and fruit chutneys. There were milk sweets made with condensed milk and fresh coconut that melted in the mouth. The devotees there at the temple came around again and again with seconds, thirds and fourths until we were full up to the neck!

 If you could visit anywhere in the world you’ve never been, where would you go?

I would love to visit Dwarka in India. Five thousand years ago it went by the same name (Dvārakā in the original Sanskrit) and is described in authoritative historical literature to have been filled with gardens and lakes full of flowers. It boasted nine hundred thousand royal palaces, all constructed with crystal and silver and decorated with large emeralds. Inside these palaces, the furnishings were bedecked with gold and jewels. Traffic moved along a well-laid-out system of boulevards, roads, intersections and marketplaces, and many assembly houses and temples of demigods graced the charming city. Around this time there was a great geological event, and much of Dvārakā was submerged beneath the sea. Numerous ancient artefacts have been found there in recent times. 

 What are the values that drive you?

Honesty, dependability, compassion, care.

SOUNZ would like to thank the New Zealand Music Commission for supporting this internship.