Auckland • Public Lectures & Recital

April 16, 2014, 6.00pm – 7.30pm – Auckland

World Voice Day in New Zealand
Public Lectures & Recital


Place: University of Auckland, Tāmaki Campus

Address: 261 Morrin Rd, Room 722.201, St Johns, Auckland

Dr Te Oti Rakena and Peter Chum

Benson Wilson (baritone) and Juan Kim (pianist)

Dr Te Oti Rakena trained as a classical singer in the USA at New England Conservatory in Boston and received his Doctorate from the University of Texas before commencing post-doctoral studies in Europe. Currently he is the Associate Head of School, Performance (Classical) and the Coordinator of Vocal Studies in the School of Music at the University of Auckland. An established performer in the Opera and Music Theatre genres he is a published researcher in the areas of vocal function, non-western vocal performance and studio pedagogy. The presentation “All Māori can sing, eh!” discusses the increase in successful Māori and Pacific Island singers entering performance careers in the area of Western European Classical Music. As the coordinator of the largest tertiary vocal department in the country, and a Māori, Dr Rakena gives an insider perspective on this trend, offering a rational, evidence-based reason for this demographic’s success in singing and aligning it with international models in teaching and learning and the current literature in vocal science.

Peter Chum is a specialist performing arts and voice physiotherapist who has returned to NZ after spending 7 years in London’s West End working primarily with performers. Peter has a unique and varied experience in managing performers’ problems. He has worked with dancers, actors, singers and musicians, from amateur through to high profile professional performers. Peter has a particular clinical interest in treating the performance voice. He will discuss the concept of Performing Arts Medicine and the combined care and management of the performance voice; the role of the voice physiotherapist in the singing and speaking voice; the relationship of laryngeal muscle tension and vocal problems; and common problems and pitfalls and how to prevent them. Peter founded Performers Choice Physiotherapy to cater for the health and wellbeing of the performing artist.

A brief recital will be given by Benson Wilson (baritone) and Juan Kim (pianist). Benson is currently completing a Bachelor of Honours in vocal performance from the University of Auckland. A former member of the NZ Secondary Schools choir, and the National Youth Choir, he has sung in Kapa Haka and Samoan performance groups. A finalist in the 2013 North Shore aria competition, in 2014, he will be singing Des Grieux in the Opera Factory production of “Potrait of Manon” by Massenet and is the soloist in the Faure requiem with St Matthews Orchestra and the Auckland Youth Choir. Juan was born in Korea and started playing the piano at the age of 6. He entered University of Auckland in 2009 as BMus (piano performance)/BCom conjoint student but after a year, he decided to concentrate on piano performance. He has played for the operetta ‘Die Fledermaus’ with Helen Medlyn and performed the Tchaikovsky piano concerto no.1 in B-flat minor, Op. 23 at the Forum North, Whangarei. Juan performs as a soloist and accompanist for singers such as Kawiti Waetford and Ben Makisi.


Contact person: Sylvia Leao, email




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