SOUZ contemporary prize awarded to Salina Fisher

Composer Salina Fisher has become the youngest ever winner of New Zealand’s SOUZ Contemporary Award.

The 24-year-old took home the award for her work Tōrino – echoes on pūtōrino improvisations by Rob Thorne.

The SOUZ Centre for New Zealand Music awarded the prize at the APRA Silver Scroll Awards in Dunedin on 28 September.

Tōrino is inspired by the voices of the taonga pūoro instrument pūtōrino. The work was commissioned in 2016 by Chamber Music New Zealand for performance by the New Zealand String Quartet, and it will represent New Zealand at the ISCM World New Music Days 2017 in Canada.

Salina studied composition and violin at Te Kōkī New Zealand School of Music. Her works have been performed both in NZ and internationally, including performances by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Stroma New Music Ensemble and Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra.

SOUNZ executive director Diana Marsh said: “Salina’s ‘Tōrino’ is a work that seamlessly combines western musical tradition with Aoteaora’s own musical heritage. It is fantastic to see, and hear, a young composer take her work into this exciting direction. SOUNZ is again very impressed with the incredibly high standard of works entered for the SOUNZ Contemporary Award and the high quality of composition from New Zealand composers. Ngā mihi nui, congratulations, Salina.”