A pair of Year 12 musicians are now two of the youngest members of the New Zealand Youth Symphonic Winds (NZYSW), the country’s premier concert band for musicians under 25.
Tessa Frazer and Kaia Holborow auditioned for the band through a filmed audition process before their NCEA Level 1 examinations last year.
Tessa plays the alto-saxophone and Kaia plays the clarinet.
Both were thrilled when they found out they made the national band.
“We were two of the youngest in the band which is exciting because most of the people were university students,” Kaia says.
“We worked really hard for the auditions so it was great to get in,” Tessa adds.
Their first concerts with the band were in Auckland in January.
“At the beginning of the year we had two shows with the NZYSW. We practised for about four days as a group for 10 hours a day,” Tessa says.
“It was a lot of hard work because playing a wind or brass instrument requires a lot of breathing,” Kaia adds.
The pair will be playing with the band again in July and will have concerts in Wellington and Palmerston North.
Both Tessa and Kaia play in the QMC Orchestra and have been playing their respective instruments for 6 years and are Grade 8 performers.
The pair enjoy the challenge of being in NZYSW.
“NZYSW sent us the pieces to learn at home. Then we practised them with the group once we got to Auckland,” Kaia says.
“You have to learn how to work with different people. It was hard at the beginning as we didn’t know anyone except each other so we had to learn how to work together,” Tessa adds.
Outside of NZYSW and the QMC Orchestra Tessa and Kaia are part of the Wellington City Concert Band.
“The Concert Band is good because it’s a good step towards the NZYSW as you learn to work with lots of different people and ages,” Tessa says.