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Violist Swoops 1st Prize at New Zealand’s Gisborne International Music Competition

22 year old New Zealand violist Alexander McFarlane has been awarded 1st prize at the 2017 Gisborne International Music Competition

22 year old New Zealand violist Alexander McFarlane has been awarded 1st prize at the 2017 Gisborne International Music Competition, in New Zealand.

A student of David Takeno at London’s Guildhall School of Music, Alexander will receive $10,000 NZD - and a number of local performance opportunities.

The annual competition, open to solo orchestral instrumentalists aged 16-25, is regarded as one of the most significant development bursaries in the Australasian region.

Alexander is the first violist to take the top prize in the competition’s 28 year history.

2017 2nd and 3rd prizes were awarded 22 year old clarinetist Oliver Schermacher from Australia - and 25 year old violinist Hahnsol Kim from the United States.



In addition, Alexander was awarded the $1000 prize for the ‘Best performance of a work by J.S. Bach’.

The $1000 prize for the ‘Best Performance of a Work by a New Zealand Composer’ was awarded to violinist Christine Lee.

The $2000 prize for the ‘Most Promising’ candidate was awarded to cellist Caleb Wong.

Previous 1st prize winners include 2017 Queen Elisabeth International Cello Competition prize winner Santiago Canon Valencia, 2015 Joseph Joachim International Violin Competition prize winner Amalia Hall – and 2016 Lipizer International Violin Competition prize winner James Dong.



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