Michael Hill International Violin Competition
Dear <<First Name>>,

The world's most exciting violinists will soon descend upon New Zealand
In four weeks, 18 competitors, 2 development prize winners, a former winner, and 7 top-drawer judges (that's 28 exceptional violinists if you're counting!) will have arrived in Queenstown for the start of the 2013 Competition.  Tickets are on sale now for eight days of sublime music, world-class artists and nail-biting adrenalin.  Visit to purchase tickets for the Queenstown rounds, and for the Auckland rounds.

The Insiders Guide
When the level of playing is so high, how on earth do the judges differentiate between so many violinists – let alone rank them?  Dr Justine Cormack, the NZTrio's violinist, hosts this popular series which explores and explains the elusive violnist X-factor.  Not a pre-concert talk, but instead a conversant violinist's candid take on the inner workings of the Competition.  Justine will share valuable insights throughout the stages of the event and more salient will invite and respond to questions directly from the audience at regular junctures.... the sort of questions that audience member are always dying to ask.  

Similar to wine tasting with the actual vintner,  The Insiders Guide will help to provide the audience with tools and knowledge to judge for themselves.
Free of charge to any ticket holder attending the live rounds of the Competition.

NZTrio on tour this month
New Zealand's own internationally recognised trio and regular panellists/collaborating artists of the  Michael Hill International Violin Competition are touring Aotearoa this May with Chamber Music New Zealand.
The trio are performing 10 concerts full of intensity, playfulness, exoticism, and romance with a richly varied programme of old world (Tchaikovsky, Korngold and Shostakovich) meets new world (Sheng, Cowan and Zwilich).

Touring 2 – 16 May in Invercargill, Dunedin, Nelson, Christchurch, Auckland, New Plymouth, Palmerston North, Napier, Wellington and Hamilton.  Visit for concert details.

Ida Kavafian and the CSO
Ida's previous appearance in New Zealand was when she was with the legendary Beaux Arts Trio, so we are really looking forward to seeing her (and hearing her) in the coming weeks on our fair shores again.  With a repertoire as diverse as her talents, Ida has electrified stages as a recitalist as well as a soloist with major orchestras across the globe.  The Competition knows her best through her past students, Bella Hristova (winner 2007 Competition) and Josef Spacek (winner 2009 Competition).

Christchurch is often described as having four seasons in one day but the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra is looking to offer its audiences eight in their upcoming Masterworks concert.
  Ida appears with the CSO Saturday 25 May in Christchurch and 26 May in Timaru where she performs Vivaldi's The Four Seasons as well as Piazzolla's The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires.   Tickets available through

James Ehnes and the APO
James returns to New Zealand and the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra to play Elgar’s magnificent Violin Concerto on Thursday 30 May and then shoots down to Queenstown the very next day to serve on the Competition's international jury with Ida and five other world-renowned violinists.  

Known for the ease of his virtuosity and thoughtful musicianship, James has been referred to as 'the Jascha Heifetz of our day' by the Globe and Mail.  His extensive discography of over 25 discs ranges from Bach violin sonatas to John Adams' Road Movies and has been honoured with a Grammy, a Gramophone and six Juno awards.

Tickets to hear James with the APO are available on

Mother's Day is next weekend
The Competition wishes to acknowledge and thank all of the mothers who have toted their budding violinists to years of music lessons, made sure the practice got done in the early days and held their breath in the concert hall during all those tricky passages.  Thanks to all of you mums!

And thanks also to the dozens of host mums putting their hands up to billet our competitors in Queenstown and Auckland.  We know it's a rewarding experience for the host and the violinist and we're so grateful to you all for opening your homes and hearts in such a generous fashion.  2009 host mum Carole McIntosh and YooJin Jang (2nd prize winner)

Why not thank your mum by shouting her some tickets to the Competition this year, or if she's not in New Zealand, how about a couple of international suggestions?  Chicago - 8 May Harris Theater's Michael Hill Series with Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Centre in a programme of piano quartets  or Australia - Barry Humphries' Weimar Cabaret with Richard Tognetti, Meow Meow and the Australian Chamber Orchestra

Spend Mother’s Day with Michael
A different Michael!  Join award winning and renowned Chef Michael Meredith at the Stamford Plaza Auckland as he puts his unique culinary twist on the traditional High Tea.  The sumptuous selection of treats is a Meredith-inspired twist on the traditional and includes a glass of Moet champagne. 

Bookings are essential and can be made by phoning Cheryln on (09) 912 7041 or emailing  $70 per adult.

Michael Hill
For all the extraordinary things your Mum has helped you find, find her something extraordinary this Mother's Day at Michael Hill. Here's a nice suggestion... 1 carat diamond earrings crafted in 10ct gold... a timeless gift that she's sure to treasure.

The Competition would like to thank the two dozen-plus generous collection of sponsors and donors which, together, fund the Competition thus playing an important role in the lives of our competitors and doing something valuable for New Zealand.  We warmly welcome new sponsors Allied Press in Dunedin and lawyers Chen Palmer who have recently opened up an office in Auckland.

Sincerely yours,

Anne Rodda, Executive Director
Michael Hill International Violin Competition


World Federation of International Music Competitions

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