Chamber trio takes off
They’ve only been playing together for six months, but a trio of Auckland musicians have already won two major awards.
Auckland University students John-Paul Muir, Sophie Williams and Amalia Paul, who make up the chamber trio Scintillatum, won the Royal Overseas League Arts international scholarship.
The $50,000 prize includes a trip to London and Scotland with concert tickets and the chance to perform at international venues.
“We were absolutely thrilled,” says violinist Amalia, 18.
They also came first place in an Auckland Chamber Music Society competition.
Pianist John-Paul, 21, says the standard was high for the final of the international scholarship contest.
“All the groups were pretty outstanding, it could have gone to anyone. In that way we were quite surprised, but we knew we had a chance.”
North Shore residents Amalia and John-Paul played chamber music together at high school before 22-year-old cellist Sophie, from Remuera, joined them this year.
The three say they will spend some time relaxing and pursuing their own musical interests for a while, before starting preparation for the July trip.
“We have to prepare lots of work to take over,” says Sophie.
None have been to the London before, where they will have lessons and investigate opportunities for more study.
“It will be really full-on,” says John-Paul.
This is the second year the Royal Overseas League has run the competition for chamber music ensembles in New Zealand.
New Zealand director Lyn Milne says the trio put on a passionate and polished performance.
“They are incredibly young for where they are at.
“They will meet musicians from around the world and get an idea of the big picture. They will be contributing as well as observing.”
Talented trio: Amalia Paul, John-Paul Muir and Sophie Williams make up chamber music trio Scintillatum and recently won a top award.