Two young Auckland performing artists have earned the recognition of the Dame Malvina Major Foundation in its latest round of Arts Excellence Awards for the Auckland region.
Coloratura soprano Clare Hood has been awarded $3,000 and flautist Eva Ding $2,000 by the Auckland Committee of the Dame Malvina Major Foundation towards further artistic training.
Clare, who is currently completing her final year at the University of Auckland as a Masters student in Classical Voice Performance, will be using the award to help fund her audition tour to the UK and Europe for postgraduate programmes in opera.
She says the award means a great deal as it is a recognition of her skills and potential as an artist.
“The support of the Dame Malvina Major Foundation will be incredibly helpful in funding my forthcoming audition tour and I am extremely grateful to the Foundation and to Dame Malvina Major for their support.”
Shanghai-born, Auckland-raised Eva is working towards her Bachelor of Music with Honours at the University of Auckland before pursuing her Master of Music at the Manhattan School of Music in New York. She will use her award to travel to Quebec in July to attend the Orford Music Academy, an internationally renowned classical music summer academy.
Eva says the Arts Excellence Award will help take her one step closer to realising her aspirations of pursuing a professional career in classical music and becoming a young classical New Zealand musician on the world stage.
“I want to become an ambassador of the merging of Western and Eastern cultures and musical ideas – much like the merging of my own cultural identity – to create exciting, new musical endeavours and bring people from different cultures together.”
Adjudicator Catrin Johnsson says the standard of applicants for this year’s awards offers great promise for the future of classical music in New Zealand and beyond.
“My heartfelt congratulations to Clare and Eva. These two young artists both perform with a high level of skill and individuality. Their performances were elegant, magnetic and full of flair.”