Teenage composer takes flight

00:00, Jun 12 2014

Composing four-part chamber music is not something many people would consider, particularly not teenagers.

But Lauren Hercock, 17, of Feilding High School, took up the challenge and entered her composition in a Chamber Music New Zealand Competition, winning the Manawatu section for best performance of an original piece.

She played flute on her two-part piece Wings at the regional finals in Palmerston North on June 5 with her quartet, The Rest of the Chicken, comprising younger sister Sarah on violin, Luke Thomas on piano and Sally Eames on bass guitar.

Wings is up against 32 other compositions for the national prize, being judged by Kiwi composer Philip Norman. The winner is to be announced on Monday.

Lauren said she spent quite a bit of time writing the piece, but she enjoyed the process.

She describes the music as serene and calm in the first part and then moving into a more upbeat movement in the second part, with some interesting chord combinations.


Feilding High School head of music Rowena Jones said it was one thing to write music on paper, but another to arrange and organise a live performance.

"Lauren skilfully wrote the piece according to the ability of those in her quartet," Jones said.

She praised Lauren's work ethic and said that her pupil was an outstanding music student.

"She organised all the practices, including during the long weekend. You can be confident that the quality of her work is going to be good."

Lauren intends to pursue her love of music while studying at Victoria University next year.

Manawatu Standard