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Violist and flautist win DMMF Wellington Arts Excellence Awards

Violist Alexa Sangbin Thomson and flautist Hannah Darroch
Credit: Alexa's photo - Milena Parobczy, Hannah's photo - Bradley Garner

The Wellington Committee of the Dame Malvina Major Foundation congratulates the joint winners of this year’s Arts Excellence Award, violist Alexa Sangbin Thomson and flautist Hannah Darroch. Each will receive prize money of $2,500 towards their studies in the United States.

Chair of the Foundation’s Wellington Committee, George Troup, said the award assessors – Elizabeth Kerr of the New Zealand Arts Foundation and Christine Argyle of the New Zealand String Quartet – commended the high calibre of the eleven applicants, who demonstrated a great deal of talent and commitment.

The Arts Excellence Awards support young New Zealanders of outstanding ability in the performing arts who are preparing for a professional career. The awards contribute to the Dame Malvina Major Foundation’s vision of sharing the dream to help talented young artists to achieve their potential.

Alexa Sangbin Thomson holds a Bachelor of Music degree with First Class Honours in Classical Performance from Te Kōkī New Zealand School of Music at Victoria University of Wellington (NZSM), and has been awarded several scholarships in music. She will be studying for a Master’s degree in performance viola at Rice University in Houston, Texas, with Professor James Dunham. Her studio recording of New Zealand viola repertoire will shortly be released online.

Hannah Darroch has completed a Bachelor of Music degree with First Class Honours at NZSM and a Master of Music at the University of Colorado, Boulder. She has also been involved in music education, community outreach, and arts administration in the Wellington region. She will be studying with Timothy Hutchins at McGill University, Montréal, in the Doctor of Music programme, majoring in flute performance.

“The Wellington Committee of the Dame Malvina Major Foundation thanks the assessors for their work and wishes all of the applicants every success in their chosen careers,” said Mr Troup.

Keen to help young performers like Alexa and Hannah achieve their potential?

There are a range of ways you can “share the dream” – from making a regular or one-off donation, to leaving a bequest or sponsoring a scholarship or prize.  Find out more



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