The 2020 New Zealand Opera School fulfilled all we could wish for in terms of progress for the students.
This year we had eight students returning from previous years and thirteen new aspirants. Of the returnees several have reached a stage where they are now taking the next step and moving overseas for further “polishing” of their craft and also auditioning with a variety of opera companies.
Of the awards provided through the school the following are the results:
The Dame Sister Mary Scholar, to this award is added the wonderful support of Susie and Guy Haddleton who have made a significant donation of $20,000. This coupled with the Dame Sister Mary Leo Award provides a handsome sum to assist with studies. Susie Haddleton was a pupil of Dame Sister Mary Leo. The award this year went to Mezzo Soprano Katie Trigg of the Waikato.
The Merle Higgie Memorial Award went to Michaela Cadgwan, Soprano of Wellington
The Spirit of the School Award in memory of Captain Bryan Wyness went to Sam Downes of Howick.
The warmly reviewed Great Opera Moments Concert was directed by Jacqueline Coats of Wellington- a seasoned and hugely successful opera Director. She was assisted by long standing NZOS staffer – Kararaina Walker.
In conclusion, with your support headed by the Freemasons Foundation and Creative New Zealand, all that the School is doing and achieving lies in that support.