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This is the website of David Hamilton (b. 1955), one of New Zealand's most widely performed composers. Until 2001 Head of Music at Epsom Girls Grammar School in Auckland, from 2002 he has been concentrating on composing, reducing teaching commitments to part-time. He continued to work with Opus, the top choir of Epsom Girls Grammar School until the end of 2003, and conducted St Mary's Schola (St Mary's College 2008-2012). He was a foundation member of the New Zealand Youth Choir (1979-1982), has been composer-in-residence with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra (1999), and has also been Deputy Music Director of Auckland Choral (1996-2011).

With a strong interest and involvement in choral music, Hamilton's music is being increasingly performed by choirs around the world. Recent significant performances have been in Italy, Japan, Singapore, Taiwan, and the USA, and works have been commissioned by choirs in England, Japan, Ireland, the USA and Finland.

He is also active as a choral adjudicator, having been invited to Japan in 2000 (Takarazuka International Chamber Choir Contest) and 2003 (Japan Choral Association high schools choir competition), and to Hawaii in 2005 (Pacific Basin Music Festival). In September 2009 he was an adjudicator and workshop leader at the Trelew international choir competition in Argentina, and in 2012 received an invitation to be an adjudicator at the prestigious Eisteddfod in Llangollen, Wales (with a return invitation in 2013). Also in demand as a workshop presenter in New Zealand and overseas. He has lectured in both the School of Music and School of Education at the University of Auckland. In 2013 he was guest composer at Sing Aotearoa, the national choral event, and composed the work which everyone performed at 'The Forest Sing'. In early 2015 he was composer-in-residence at the NZ Singing School.

He is also busy as a choral conductor with community choirs, having worked with Tauranga Civic Choir, Napier Civic Choir, Pakuranga Choral Society, Taupo Choral Society and South Auckland Choral Society, as well as conducting Auckland Choral on several occasions. Major works conducted include Lambert's 'The Rio Grande', Haydn's 'Nelson' Mass (three times) and 'Little Organ Mass', Handel's 'Samson', Mozart's 'Requiem' and Clarinet Concerto, Saint Saens 'Christmas Oratorio', Gounod's 'Saint Cecilia' Mass, Mendelssohn's "Vom himmel hoch" and "Elijah", Bach cantatas, and Britten's 'Ceremony of Carols', along with a number of his own choral cycles.

Full biographical details and lists of works can be accessed on other pages.

Available now from the composer

Music for Mixed-Voice Choirs Volume 3

Includes two works with orchestra written for Auckland Choral" - The Necessary Rain"
and "Anthem for Doomed Youth", plus a selection of other works for mixed-voice choirs.




The premiere of "The Faraday Cage" on 16 September (with subsequent performances on the 18th and 20th) generated some very positive reviews and also this article in the NZ Herald. Headlined "Emotional contact is essential" the article covered some of my philosophy of composition, in particular the importance of working with community groups. Here is the link:



The year has seen a significant number of new works including several commissioned by schools for this year's "The Big Sing' choral competition.

Works completed through to October are:
"Riding the Rails"
(6 hands, one piano)
(alto sax, tenor sax, piano)
"Sunrise at Mangawhai"
(SSAATTBB unaccompanied - for Choralation choir from Westlake Girls and Boys High Schools)
"Mihi" (SSAA piano - for Cantare choir at Westlake Girls High School)
"Lullaby for Matariki"
(SA, piano duet - for Nota Bella choir at Westlake Girls High School)
"A Sacred Heart Hymn" (2-part male voices, piano - commissioned by Sacred Heart College, Auckland)
"Whaia te iti kahurangi" (TTBB, piano - commissioned by One Tree Hill College, Auckland)
"The Tree of Love" (SSA, flute and piano - commissioned for the chapel choir by Woodford House, Havelock North)
"The Man from the Land of Fandango"
(for Diocesan School for Girls)
"Paper Cut"
(for piano and concert band - for the Premier Concert Band at Auckland Grammar School)
"Sound Over All Waters" (SATB, organ - written as a gift to my good friend, choral director at Georgia College, Dr Jennifer Flory)
"Blessing for a New-Born Child" (SATB, cello - written for the baptism of Alexandra Rose Szabó Johnston)
"Concerto for Piano Duet" (III: Boogie for Liz) (piano duet (4 hands, one piano), and orchestra - written for Taharoto Orchestra (Westlake Girls and Boys High Schools))
"Aotearoa Fanfare" (for Auckland Symphony Orchestra)
"The Faraday Cage" (violin, cello and piano -for the NZ Trio)
"Yellow Songs" (5 songs for tenor and piano)
"A Santa Claus Suite" (SA choir and orchestra - for North Shore Children's Choir and North Shore Junior Orchestra)

Still ahead are works for Auckland choir Viva Voce, and a new work for Auckland Choral for the 2016 programme.



"Wairua" for solo harp won 1st place in the 2014 competition for a new work for solo harp, organised by the University of Waikato and the Harp Society of NZ. The work ("Wairua") was presented at the international World Harp Congress in Sydney in July 2014. The judging panel praised the work for its "...skilful composition and imaginative use of the resources of the concert harp, while also opening up a very engaging sound world for listeners".



On the "Music" page is a sample of "In Flanders Fields" for SATB choir and piano. Composed for the 2013 Passchendaele commemoration at Auckland Museum, it becoming a popular piece for ANZAC Day commemorations also. Available in a version for SSA and piano, and also available with orchestral accompaniment.

Feel free to contact me if you want any further information on anything - my contact details are on the Contact Me page.