Rotorua’s Accelerando programme will be back for a second year with the help of a $15,000 grant from Rotorua Trust.
The vocal excellence programme delivered by Youth Opera Aotearoa Trust supports and teaches high school aged students with a passion for vocal performance.
The programme runs throughout the year, with a week of tuition in the April school holidays, one in July and three weekends to coincide with the major local competitions.
The programme delivers teaching modules, stage craft, guest tutoring, and a performance to showcase what has been learned during the course.
Youth Opera Aotearoa Trust Chairwoman Liz Carrington says 30 young people from local mainstream high schools and kura kaupapa are taking part this year.
“Last year, there was an overwhelming response from the students to keep meeting and performing throughout the year so the main aim this year is having more contact time with the participants to further the connection that music brings.
“The feedback we received last year was that the group was safe, supportive and kind, allowing the young people to take performance risks and know they would be met with encouragement from their peers. The like-minded group built strong relationships and gained a lot of confidence.“
Carrington says the Youth Opera Aotearoa Trust has built good relationships with local universities and tertiary institutes to support career pathways for students.
“Two Year 13 students who took part in the programme last year have chosen to pursue music. One is studying Classical Voice at Waikato University’s Conservatorium of Music, while another is enrolled in the 2023 musical theatre programme at Wintec.”
The students showcase their talents and perform for the community as a way to fundraise for future programmes.
“The students still help out by fundraising money through their concerts, so they pay it forward for the next programme.”
Carrington says the Rotorua Trust funding has been vital for the programme’s success.
“We couldn’t do what we do without the funding from Rotorua Trust. We want the programme to keep growing and are planning to develop regional programmes over the next five years.”
Rotorua Trust Chairman Stewart Edward says the Trust is proud to support the programme.
“The programme has had great feedback from past students. It gives young people with an interest in vocal performance a chance to meet like-minded individuals and receive guidance about how to pursue a career in it.”