The history of choral music in New Zealand has been documented in a new book Sing New Zealand – the story of choral music in Aotearoa by Dr Guy Jansen, who died earlier this year. His daughter, Nicola Kiver, is in New Zealand for the launch of this important book.
Guy Jansen is very well known in the choral music scene in this country, and much further afield, for his lifetime commitment to choirs and choral singing.
In 1979, while working as National Officer for Music in the New Zealand Department of Education, he founded the New Zealand National Youth Choir; and later founded the New Zealand Secondary Students’ Choir.
He was also influential in encouraging the next generation of choral leaders, including Dr Karen Grylls, the Artistic Director of NZ Youth Choir and Voices New Zealand.
Guy Jansen passed away in May, as he was putting the finishing touches to a history of choral singing in New Zealand.
Following his death, there was an outpouring of gratitude from the wider New Zealand music community, with many saying they owed Guy a “huge debt of gratitude” for his dedication to choral music.
He was also recognised when the New Zealand Youth Orchestra with the National Youth Choir dedicated a performance – conducted by James Judd - to his honour.
Sing New Zealand – the story of choral music in Aotearoa has just been published, and the book’s being launched throughout the country.