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Virginia Baird Placed in Commonwealth Youth Composition Award


The Commonwealth International Composition Award is a prestigious award created to encourage young people to learn how to compose music and showcase their talent. It is run and managed by The Commonwealth Resounds, an officially accredited Commonwealth musical organisation, based at The Purcell School for Young Musicians in south Hertfordshire, England; the Commonwealth’s oldest specialist music school.

Virginia has been composing music for as long as she can remember and first started piano lessons at just seven years old; then went on to play the violin. Encouraged by our Head of Music, Miss Cole, Virginia entered this award.

Her composition ‘Kawhatau’, inspired by a rafting trip to celebrate her grandfather’s 80th birthday, earned Virginia a place as one of ten finalists from around the world. She was then assigned a tutor from The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and spent two months composing a second piece, ‘Rangitikei’, which was submitted and learnt by professional violin and cello players in London, and performed for a panel of judges in the Princess Alexandra Hall at the Royal Over-seas League. This beautiful composition was awarded second overall at the grand final and live-streamed across the globe.

It was very special that Virginia’s aunt who lives in London, and was on the rafting trip, was able to attend the London performance. Virginia would have loved to have been there also, however, was awarded a government cultural exchange to Thailand for four weeks in January, which took place over the same holiday period.