New Zealand School of Music

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The Te Kōkī New Zealand School of Music (NZSM), located in Wellington, New Zealand, was established in 2006 as a joint venture between Victoria University of Wellington and Massey University. Te Kōkī (a reference to the 'Dawn Chorus') was chosen as the School’s Māori name. The NZSM combined the strengths of the former Conservatorium of Music at Massey, and Victoria University’s School of Music and as a limited liability company with two equal shareholders, is governed by a board of directors. NZSM provides a tertiary teaching faculty with programmes in Classical Performance,[1] Jazz Performance,[2] Music Studies, Composition and Sonic Arts. It also provides the only postgraduate degree course in Music Therapy available in the country.

Staff who moved from the former Conservatorium at Victoria University included composer Jack Body, who retired in 2009, and now includes Gillian Ansell, Violist of the New Zealand String Quartet, as Artist in Residence. On 1 July 2014, the School transitioned to full Victoria University of Wellington ownership.

With a full tertiary programme and full range of degrees,[3] NZSM also expanded on traditional strengths in historical research, allowing a representation of scholarly expertise across multiple fields including musicology, opera studies, jazz, ethnomusicology, music and film, baroque and classical performance practice, contemporary performance, music technology, and electronic music. The NZSM Young Musician's Programme provides tuition and ensemble performance opportunities for school-aged students and the NZSM Foundation Course in Jazz is a pre-tertiary programme for school-leavers who wish to pursue Jazz studies but who are not yet ready for University.

An earlier New Zealand School of Music Ltd situated at 157 Symonds Street, Auckland was founded as a private concern in 1974 by its governing director, Derek Williams,[4] a graduate and former tutor of the University of Auckland under the patronage of Lord Mayor of Auckland, Sir Dove-Myer Robinson. The then New Zealand School of Music Ltd offered private and class lessons in three locations in all orchestral instruments, as well as Piano and Singing, and under the tutelage of Maestro Juan Matteucci OBE,[5] conductor of the Symphonia of Auckland, established the first non-university course for conductors of music in the Southern Hemisphere[6]. The school flourished from 1974 until 1978, when it hit financial difficulties coinciding with the launch of an orchestral training scheme[7], and so had to be wound up in 1978. Existing teaching staff thereafter continued the New Zealand School of Music Ltd's core tuition services as the co-operative 'Auckland School of Music'.


  1. ^ (14 April 2016 to 26 September 2017). Middle C: Classical Music Reviews, . Middle C. (Wellington, New Zealand).
  2. ^ Bowers, Jack. 28 August 2015. New Zealand School of Music Big Band: Too Cool. All About Jazz. (Philadelphia, USA).
  3. ^ Bachelor of Music. New Zealand Musician. (New Zealand).
  4. ^ Derek Williams
  5. ^ (13 October 1990). ‘In memoriam: MATTEUCCI, Juan O.B.E.’. The New Zealand Herald
  6. ^ (22 July 1976). 'I think... yes... I've got it!'. Front Page. Auckland Star (New Zealand)
  7. ^ (25 January, 1977). 'Orchestra To Give Students Pro Touch'. New Zealand Herald

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