Kawiti Waetford Continues this musical journey
Posted on 19 December 2013
The Foundation has been an integral part of young baritone Kawiti Waetford’s musical education for the past 3+ years during which time it has provided significant financial support and more importantly had a close overview of his studies with his teachers. The Foundation also assumed a ‘management’ role advising him about various commercial aspects of his career. Dame Kiri has kept a keen watch on his progress and regularly mentored him as well as providing unique opportunities to perform as a guest in some of her high-profile NZ concerts.
The Foundation in partnership with The Wallace Arts Trust and a group of enthusiastic donors is committed to providing ongoing financial support for his not insignificant tuition fees and cost of living expenses when he takes up a position at the International Academy of Voice in Wales. Kawiti has already embarked on a series of regional fund-raising recitals. Dame Kiri will continue her guidance and make regular visits to the Academy to mentor and check on his progress. Obviously we have high hopes for his future. Donations in support of Kawiti would be appreciated.
Recently we received this message from Kawiti ……
~ “Iti rearea, teitei kahikatea ka taea” ~
(Though small, the rearea bird is able to fly from branch to branch of the tall kahikatea tree to reach its top)
I am currently in my last semester of undergraduate study at Otago University, set to graduate in mid of August. Four years have passed so quickly, and when I look back I wonder, “How did it all go so fast?” Since being taken under the wing of Dame Kiri Te Kanawa and her Foundation, at the end of my first year at Otago University, I have had opportunities to sing at events, visit places, and meet people whom, and that, I would never have imagined possible in any other situation. Coupled with Dame Kiri and the support she and her Foundation provide, and the unwavering guidance of Foundation trustee and Head of Performance at Otago University, Professor Terence Dennis and eminent teacher of singing, Isabel Cunningham, this collective trio has gently cultivated my progress and development to date. Last year was one of the busiest years of my life, with studying and performing two major Mozart roles, that of Figaro in Opera Otago’s production of Le Nozze di Figaro, and Guglielmo in the Auckland Opera Studio’s production of Cosi fan tutte. I also entered and progressed through the three rounds of the Lexus Song Quest, my first major aria competition, and placed as one of its six finalists. Throughout my undergraduate journey I continue to be supported by the Ngarimu VC & Maori Battalion Scholarship as a recipient of their undergraduate award, and acknowledge how their support has allowed me to face and navigate these challenges placed before me.
I am thrilled to have been accepted into the Masters in Advanced Vocal Studies programme at the Wales International Academy of Voice (WIAV), to learn under acclaimed Welsh tenor and teacher of bel canto, Dennis O’Neill, for the year 2013/14. I am set to fly to the UK in September to work with Dame Kiri for two weeks. This will be an opportunity for me to benefit from some intensive one-on-one sessions with her on technique and repertoire, but also an opportunity for her to gauge where I am at technically, and identify areas for me to improve on for the coming year in Cardiff.
I am truly humbled and grateful by the breadth and depth of guidance and support which I have received from Dame Kiri and her Foundation, and for the continual support from my teachers, friends and whanau, and assisting institutions.
Hei kon mai an I roto I aku mihi mhaki,