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SOUNZ Brass Composition Prize
2022 results

L to R: John Elmsly (winner), Jacob Barrett and David Woodcock (highly commended)

SOUNZ Centre for New Zealand Music, together with the Brass Band Association of New Zealand, is proud to announce the winner and finalists of the SOUNZ Brass Composition Prize 2022.

This year's adjudicator was Wellington based composer and trombonist Ewan Clark. He had the following comments:

"This impressive set of compositions made the judging process difficult but very enjoyable. A wealth of lyricism was on display, with a suitable emphasis on compelling melodic and harmonic ideas that will no doubt inspire some highly expressive performances. The vast majority of the writing was idiomatic for the instrument featured and for the piano, if used. In the most successful entries, composers clearly articulated the work's unique identity and style, maintaining this while moving between various sections and intensity levels. The presentation of scores was generally of a high standard, with a lot of expressive detail included. Thank you to all entrants for taking this opportunity to contribute to New Zealand's home-grown brass repertoire!"

WINNER: John Elmsly: Prayer for Peace

John writes: "I’m thrilled with this news; the impulse to write the piece came when daily horrors from the Ukraine were flooding the news. The melodic capabilities and expressive power of brass instruments have been in my head since early teenage years, and the SOUNZ Call for Scores was a great stimulus. Sadly, the prayer continues…"


Jacob Barrett: Celesta

Jacob writes: "I am very honoured to have Celesta chosen as a highly commended work for the 2022 SOUNZ Brass Composition Prize. Writing this piece was a great experience for me and it was a lot of fun to explore the subtle, beautiful sounds of the cornet - I hope that you all enjoy listening to it!"

David Woodcock: Through the Mists

David writes: "I was thrilled at hearing the news that my piece had been highly commended, and will be played at the National Championships. I look forward very much to hearing the performance, and I thank SOUNZ and the NZBBA for awarding me this opportunity."

John Elmsly received a $400 prize. The three works will be performed at the BBANZ National Championships in Wellington, 13-16 July 2022. Scores and parts for the three pieces will be available shortly.