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Mar 092017

A Kuranui music student has landed an opportunity of a lifetime after being selected to play double bass for the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (NZSO) National Youth Orchestra.

William Taber will be performing to huge audiences during two high profile concerts, the first on 14 July at the Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington and second at the Auckland Town Hall the following day.

William Taber Kuranui College

The Year 12 student was encouraged by his Martinborough bass teacher Vicky Jones to initially try out for the National Secondary Schools Orchestra where he gained the third chair out of six. “Being awarded third chair for the Secondary Schools Orchestra was great and as a result Vicky felt that I give the National Youth Orchestra a try,” explained William.

William had to perform a blind audition, which meant preparing a two-minute unedited audio recording. The stakes were high, with over 50% of the current NZSO being made up of former members of the Youth Orchestra.

Formed in 1959, the National Youth Orchestra has played a vital role in providing the country’s most gifted young orchestral performers with a springboard to highly successful careers as orchestral players, soloists, chamber musicians and teachers.

The young musician started playing the piano aged seven and only took up the double bass two years ago. He also plays electric bass in the Kuranui College Jazz Band.

“I want to pursue a musical career and I’m hoping to either go on to the New Zealand School of Music at Victoria University or the Conservatory in Melbourne after I finish college,” he said.

Before then, William will have to clock in hours of practice and a week-long rehearsal before his two concerts. “I’m very excited about it, it will be a lot of fun to play. It’s a great feeling, really amazing and I still can’t quite believe it.”

The National Youth Orchestra will perform at Michael Fowler Centre, Wellington on Friday 14 July at 6:30pm and Auckland Town Hall on Saturday 15 July at 7:30pm.