Whether this is your first time entering the Contest or your fifth time, it is an exciting journey full of rewarding challenges.
We've got plenty of great advice and useful tips to help you along the way, from choosing your repertoire right through to the performance. Of course, if you're ever feeling overwhelmed or need some guidance don't hesitate to ask your teachers and tutors or past contest participants for help!
Finding a piece to play
Deciding what repertoire is the best for your ensemble to perform in the contest can seem like a challenging task, but don't be intimidated, there are lots of great resources available to make sourcing music easier.
The best place to start when sourcing music is by seeking suggestions from your tutors and teachers. We've also listed a number of places below that are worth exploring. These are sources of music for loan or hire and freelance musicians who will arrange or even compose something suitable.
National Library of New Zealand
The National Library of New Zealand has an extensive music collection which can be loaned from your local school or public library. Lists of repertoire for specific combinations of instruments can also be supplied. The collection is available via a searchable database.
P: +64 4 474 3017
SOUNZ Centre for New Zealand Music
SOUNZ is currently grading chamber music works suitable for the Contest so you can easily see which pieces would best suit your group’s experience level. This year graded lists are available for woodwind, string and piano groups.
SOUNZ is a not for profit organisation committed to providing, fostering and promoting the music of New Zealand composers. Their website has a database of New Zealand music repertoire suggestions.
SOUNZ supports the NZCT Chamber Music Contest each year by providing prizes for the performance of a New Zealand work in each district, and the winners of the Original Composition section.
P: +64 4 801 8602
Many City Libraries have a comprehensive collection of music available for loan from standard classical repertoire through to pop, rock and jazz, with specialist music staff available to assist.
Auckland City Library
P: 09-307 7764
Wellington Central Library
Christchurch City Libraries
P: 3-941 7923
Hickey's Music Centre
Hickey's Music Centre is a user friendly supplier of sheet music, with a good catalogue of chamber music available to purchase.
Craig is a freelance composer, arranger and copyist. His arrangements are musically very clever and he has a good understanding of technique, especially for string and keyboard players. He can write to any level of difficulty as appropriate.
P: +64 4 232 1231
Another good place to start is with music suppliers such as Piano Traders Ltd (P: +64 9 638 9044) and Educational Music (Sheet) Ltd (P: +64 4 566 1187).
Rehearsal and Performance
Contest participants often tell us that the best part is the experience of having a clear goal to rehearse towards and getting to spend time together as musicians both during rehearsal and in performance. Here are some veteran contest alumni to give you advice on these topics: