Top chamber music group
If you ask Mana College’s Three Shades of Brown how they got their name, you will get a cheeky answer.
Waiora Paul-Utiera, Hamana Houia and Jobe Kaiawe, all 16, make up the school’s chamber music ensemble.
‘‘It’s pretty obvious how we chose the name of our group – it’s because we’re white,’’ Paul-Utiera joked.
The students competed against 40 other groups at the NZ Chamber Music Competition this month and took out the group prize for the second year running.
Paul-Utiera, the self described ‘‘charmer’’ of the trio, said they were going to go by another, less obvious, name.
‘‘We all had facial hair at the time so were going to be called the Three Wise Men.
‘‘Then I looked at our hands and I saw they were all different shades of brown.’’
Paul-Utiera began playing music in his Ratana Brass Band in 2009.
‘‘I play the trumpet, which is really the most disgusting instrument. It’s also known as the spit valve.’’
Kaiawe grew up in a musical family and started playing guitar four years ago.
‘‘With professional musicians in the family everyone always assumed I would be able to play something.’’
Jobe is the only one in his family who plays an instrument.
As the bass player he had the hardest job of all the band members. ‘‘I have to keep the rhythm for the whole band.’’
Mana College head of music Jacqueline Nordon said she was very proud of the students for winning a second time.
‘‘The adjudicator was very complimentary and said they were a very tight unit.’’