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New Zealand Youth Choir

The New Zealand Youth Choir was formed in 1979 by Guy Jansen. Conducted and directed since 1989 by Dr Karen Grylls (ONZM) the choir has received critical acclaim and considerable success in New Zealand and worldwide.

Recordings featuring New Zealand Youth Choir

Gaude/Rejoice: Joyful Choral Music
Choral music compilation

MMT2048, Released 2004
 
Winds That Whisper
New Zealand choral music from the 20th century

MMT2016, Released 1999
 

Biography

The New Zealand Youth Choir (formerly the New Zealand National Youth Choir) has achieved considerable success since its formation in 1979. Performances throughout New Zealand and many international tours have firmly established the Choir's reputation for consistency, energy and excellence.

The New Zealand Youth Choir was formed in 1979 by Guy Jansen and was subsequently conducted by Peter Godfrey from 1980 to 1989. Dr Karen Grylls (ONZM) has directed the Choir since 1989. The amateur mixed choir comprises between 40 and 65 members who audition and perform in three year cycles. The choir accepts members aged between 16 and 24 at the time of audition. A number of members have gone on to become members of Voices New Zealand, and a number of New Zealand's most prominent classical singers number among the choir's alumni.

The choir has achieved considerable success both within New Zealand and internationally, including winning the 1992 ‘Let the People Sing’ competition in a field of 26 choirs from 15 countries, the ‘Choir of the World’ title at Llangollen in 1999, and the ‘Grand Prix Slovakia’ in the same year. In 2001 the choir performed at the biannual convention of the American Choral Directors Association, one of three international guest choirs performing three 30 minute programmes to an audience of more than 6000 international choral directors.

The choir has received much critical acclaim, William Dart commenting “the choir has won top international prizes and, in times when we need to take our culture beyond these shores, they are sterling ambassadors, giving our songs and waiata a place in the concert halls of the world.” (New Zealand Herald, June 2007)



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