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Manurewa High School band Mit Eldnar takes rare double

Issue: Volume 97, Number 19

Posted: 26 October 2018
Reference #: 1H9n8X

A band formed earlier this year by students at Manurewa High School has already won one of the top awards in the New Zealand music industry for 2018, but the prize is just the icing on the cake for the senior students.

Band members Joseph Oti-George, TJ Televave, Finau Fuluvai, Wayne Guttenbeil and Sonatane Kaufusi.

Band members Joseph Oti-George, TJ Televave, Finau Fuluvai, Wayne Guttenbeil and Sonatane Kaufusi.

Manurewa High School’s band Mit Eldnar has taken first place in both Smokefreerockquest and Tangata Beats 2018 – only the second time this has been achieved.

With its strong support of the performing arts, the school has a remarkable record of achievement in music, dance and performance. Guitarist Joseph Oti-George says, “We couldn’t have done it without the strong support of our school.”

Bass player Wayne Guttenbeil says they put in a lot of hard work as they rehearsed at lunchtimes and after school, as well as during music classes. “It was pretty hectic in the run up to the event.”

Head of Music Tim Randle says the process of preparing for the competition was a huge learning experience for the band members.

“This could open lifelong opportunities in music for them and their achievement will also be inspirational for other students.”

However, they also have many years of experience as members of church groups where music plays a large part, giving them good foundation skills on which to build.

The name Mit Eldnar is a reversal of the letters in Tim Randle’s name. The band’s music is melodic and a mix of styles – Wayne describes it as “neo-soul with roots in R’n’B”.

With their win, Mit Eldnar received $10,000 in musical equipment from the Rockshop, and an $8,000 recording and music video grant from NZ on Air and a branding package, plus their prizes from Smokefreerockquest and Tangata Beats.

They have recently recorded their new single in an Auckland recording studio and made a video to accompany it. The song is called You already had my heart. A release date has yet to be confirmed.

Watch Māori TV’s coverage(external link) of the band’s win.

Showquest given the go-ahead for the next two years

Thousands of students got a chance to showcase their talents this year as part of Showquest, a series of regional dance, drama and music events for schools followed by a national show.

Rockquest Promotions has been given the go-ahead to organise the event for the next two years after a successful run of shows and positive feedback from participants. Nearly 60 schools signed up and more than 2,000 students took part. 

Rockquest Promotions will contact schools in term 4 to ensure that those who want to take part in 2019 have time to plan and to register their interest.

Find out more about Showquest(external link)

Mit Eldnar band members are Year 13 students Sonatane Kaufusi (singer and guitarist), Finau Fulivai (drums), TJ Televave (keyboard), Joseph Oti-George (guitar) and Wayne Guttenbeil (bass). It’s not their first taste of success, as Sonatane was last year’s winner of the solo duo category in Smokefreerockquest.

The 11-piece combination that won Tangata Beats included Tamara Wilson (saxophone), Edyn Rubena-Misilisi (saxophone), Analina Namoa (brass), Makayla Eli (vocals), Eliza Avauli (vocals) and Alofa Lualua (vocals). 

BY Education Gazette editors
Education Gazette | Tukutuku Kōrero, reporter@edgazette.govt.nz

Posted: 3:11 pm, 26 October 2018

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