Dominated by new artists last year, the annual event has seen a resurgence of established talent in 2016, showing that Pacific music is alive and well and more popular than ever.
With 18 finalists in line for wins in the 11 categories, artists Annie Grace, Te Vaka and Vince Harder lead the pack with four finals nods apiece. Included in Annie’s tally is the coveted ‘Best Pacific Female Artist’, while Vince Harder has among his the ‘Best Pacific Male Artist’ award. Te Vaka’s four includes one for ‘Best Pacific Group’.
The Awards also introduce, for the first time this year, the Best Producer category sponsored by MAINZ
Vodafone Pacific Music Awards Trust spokesperson Rev. Mua Strickson-Pua notes the artists leading the finals list are recognised luminaries in the industry, but adds they are joined by a surge of new talent.
“Last year we saw 11 artists brand new to the awards; this year, we’ve got a combination of established musicians and newcomers. That’s evidence of the vibrancy of this industry, which recognises and retains its history while constantly breaking ground with fresh new music.”
On the new category, he says the input of producers is deserving of recognition given the expertise required for the role and its contribution to the creation of quality sound recordings.
“MAINZ is proud to continue to be associated with the Vodafone Pacific Music Awards and welcomes the opportunity to sponsor the Best Producer category at the 2016 Awards,” says Christine Fenton, MAINZ General Manger. “MAINZ provides pathways from foundation through to degree for Contemporary Music performance, Audio Engineering and Music Production”.
Strickson-Pua says Pacific music has enjoyed a rich heritage, stretching back over the better part of a century, and often spilling over in to broader culture both nationally and internationally.
“Tradition, culture and heritage: it all comes together through the work of these artists, new and experienced alike. The Vodafone Pacific Music Awards are set to be another exciting evening which shouldn’t be missed.”
In addition to the entered categories, four additional awards will also be presented on the big night; the Manukau Institute of Technology Lifetime Achievement Awards, NZ On Air Radio Airplay Award, Phillip Fuemana Award for Most Promising Pacific Artist, and the Vodafone People’s Choice Award.
All of the 2016 finalists will all be up for the Vodafone People’s Choice Award for Best Pacific Artist. The winner is solely determined by public vote.
The winner of the Best Pacific album category is presented with a Tui and recognised at the Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards later this year.
The awards are now in their 12th year and the winners will be announced at an event celebrating and honouring Pacific music and artists at the Vodafone Events Centre on Thursday 9 June.
Tickets to the ceremony will be available through TicketDirect. www.ticketdirect.co.nz
0800 224 224. (Please note a booking fee may apply).
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