Music Success

KBB Music Festival

The KBB Music Festival is one of the most well-recognised and long-running music competitions for secondary schools in Auckland.  The festival showcases orchestras, concert bands and jazz bands. This year Sancta Maria received several awards for their excellent performances. These were:

  • Big Band (Directed by Thomas Cho) – Gold Award and Jazz Improvisation Award Trophy
  • Concert Band (Directed by Hamish Arthur) – Silver Award
  • Jazz Orchestra (Directed by Minju Kim) – Bronze Award
  • Symphonia (Directed by Stuart Gibbs) – Participation

A handful of Sancta Maria College students were also selected for the Honours Jazz Band. These students were Jenna Aspeling, Felix Cheng, Minju Kim, Yesel Wang, Samantha Bottom (2020 graduate), and Andrew Choi.

Well done to all students involved and of course a huge thank you to the Music Department for all the hours of preparation!

Performance pieces were as follows:

  • Symphonia – Aguas de Marco by Antonio Carlos Jobim, The Seagull & The Song of the Kingfisher by David Hamilton and Libertango by Astor Piazzolla.
  • SMC Concert Band – Western One-Step by Robert Russell Bennett, Music from The Shape of Water by Alexandre Desplat, Jam Ballista by Claire Scholes, On a Hymnsong of Philip Bliss by David Holsinger and Ruckus by Randall D. Standridge.
  • Big Band – Get in Line by Gordon Goodwin, Semimental Journey by Jim Martin, Angel Eyes by Earl Brent at al arr. Carl Strommen, A Foggy Day by George Gershwin arr. Jim Martin, and Dancing Men by John La Barbera.
  • Jazz Orchestra -Route 66 by Bobby Troup arr. Michael Sweeney, Valerie by The Zutons arr. Hamish Arthur, Sway by Pablo Beltran Ruiz arr. Rick Stitzel, Everything by Michael Buble arr. Scott Ragsdale, and Superstition by Stevie Wonder arr. Paul Murtha.

Auckland Jazz Competition

There have been further success for our many jazz musicians playing at the Auckland Jazz Competition.  This event was held over a few weekends and held at the Auckland Jazz & Blues Club, Pt Chevalier RSA.  It was an exciting few days for our students and it was a wonderful experience for many of the bands and combos to play in a real venue.  Thank you to the many parents, teachers and extended families who came out to support our musicians.  Sancta Maria College made up 10 of the 50 acts so it was awesome to see this event grow in number!

Well done to all our amazing musicians for being involved! We can definitely see the skill level growing year on year! To top off this great event, several acts were recognised with top awards:

  • Finalist and Platinum award to the Fantails combo
  • Finalist and Gold award to the Big Band
  • Gold awards to Jazz Orchestra, and The Keas combo
  • Silver awards to The Kererus and The Wekas combos
  • Bronze awards to The Tuis, The Takahes, The Saddlebacks and The Kiwis combos
  • Jenna Aspeling received outstanding soloist

Stand Up, Stand Out Competition

SUSO is a music and dance competition that was created by Auckland City Council to showcase local talent.  This year Sancta Maria College entered five groups that all did the college very proud!

  • The Jazz Ducks – Gabrield Heruela, Daniel Butcher, Aaron Chan, Oscar Chen, Joshua Orange, Lucas Siu, Jakob Yang and Tomaz Zeng. (Musical item – ‘Gotcha’).
  • Il Sistetto – Nathan Chin, Novyna Tolentino, Alanna Santosa, Megan Bottom, Jennifer Zeng and James Karl. (Musical item – ‘Evermore’ from Beauty and the Beast)
  • The Glass Gang – Sandra Heruela, Nathan Chin, Abby Tay-Morrison, Maia Tay-Morrison and Kres Bosales. (Musical item – Libertango).
  • Alofa Lahi – Aloyze Tafu, Trinity Tuineau, Yalaina Tubu and Marina Jones. (Musical item –  a rendition of SWV’s song, Weak).
  • Modesty Blaise – Ana Ganais, Jessa Calacsan, Angel Pallewatte and Kristine Guerrero. (Musical item – Photoshoot/Band’s own).

All of the groups represented the school wonderfully in one of the biggest performing arts competitions in Auckland.

Congratulations to Il Sistetto who will go through to the semi-final at Māngere Arts Centre – Ngā Tohu o Uenuku.


Stuart Gibbs
Head of Music