CANZ Committee

The committee is a voluntary organisation made up of eight members from across Aotearoa. They meet regularly throughout the year and have an in-person meeting around the date of the AGM

CANZ members are encouraged to put their names forward for consideration whenever vacancies on the committee are open. We also gratefully welcome volunteers interested in helping in particular areas

Elections for the committee are held at the Annual General Meeting, which usually occurs during March/April of each year. CANZ members are encouraged to vote for members of the committee at the AGM, either in person or by using the proxy form

Current Committee Roles

President – Simon Eastwood
Treasurer – Jason Long
Secretary – Kassandra Wang
Canzonetta Editors – Elliot Vaughan, Joshua Pearson and Pieta Hextall
Membership Officer – Pieta Hextall
Webmaster – Alfonso Bravi

Committee Members

Dr. Simon Eastwood

Composer and bass player Simon Eastwood has a diverse practice, including orchestral and chamber works, electronic pieces, and improvisation. His current work revolves around exploring interdisciplinary collaboration through personal interpretation.
In 2021 he completed a DMA from the New Zealand School of Music, and in 2012 he received an MMus with distinction from the Royal Academy of Music in London, where he studied composition with David Sawer and Sir Peter Maxwell Davies among others. Eastwood has attended residences and festivals in Dartington, Bulgaria, Estonia, Alaska, Austria, Turkey, and Lithuania. His works have been performed around the world by artists including, Franck Ollu, Martynas Levickis, CHROMA, Christopher Redgate, Stroma, Ensemble Gô, Rubiks Collective, Corvus, the New Zealand String Quartet, New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, and The BBC Singers.

Dr. Jason Long

Jason Long is a composer, sound artist, researcher, and educator from Christchurch, New Zealand. He completed a PhD in sonic engineering at Victoria University of Wellington in 2018, and carried out undergraduate studies at the University of Canterbury, and the Utrecht Higher School of the Arts, the Netherlands, as well as a Masters Degree in Composition at the Tokyo University of the Arts, Japan. His research interests include composition with musical robotics, digital and analogue synthesis and signal processing, and sound design.  His musical works have been featured internationally at festivals such as the ACL, ICMC and ISCM, and his peer-reviewed research has been published internationally at conferences such as NIME, ISEA, ICMC, ICARA, IROS, and in books by Springer, Oxford University Press, and Cambridge University Press, among others. He is also the founder of AvonSynth, a modular synthesizer manufacturing company based out of Christchurch.

Kassandra Wang

Kassandra Wang (she/they) is a Te Whanganui-a-Tara based composer and mezzo-soprano exploring interactivity, accessibility, and storytelling through sound. With a Bachelor of Music specialising in electronic and jazz composition from Te Kōkī (New Zealand School of Music), Kassandra is a passionate advocate of creating welcoming communities and amplifying underrepresented voices. She founded Sounds of Te Kōkī, a concert series of student works championing diversity and cross-disciplinary collaboration.

Pieta Hextall

Pieta Hextall is an Ōtautahi based composer, arranger, and music educator. A graduate of the New Zealand School of Music in Wellington, she has received a number of prizes for her compositions that are written principally for chamber music (particularly wind ensembles) and orchestra, and which have been work-shopped and performed in Australia and New Zealand. She is currently Director of Music at Chisnallwood Intermediate School and is involved in a number of groups around Christchurch most notably Resonance Ensemble and Pou Ataata.

Elliot Vaughan

Elliot Vaughan is an experimental music composer and performer. Following fifteen years studying and freelancing in Canada, he now lives and works back in Aotearoa, where he grew up. His diverse output includes composed theatre and performed installation as well as functional, pop, and concert music. Through it runs a focussed interrogation of the frame of music performance, borrowing the co-creative and interdisciplinary apparatus of theatre. There is an aesthetic link too, where beauty and romance never quite transcend the absurd. He holds a BFA from Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, and a MMus from Te Kōkī—New Zealand School of Music.

Joshua Pearson

Joshua Pearson is a Tāmaki Makaurau based Sāmoan composer, sonic artist, and creative technologist. He has recently completed his master degree in creative technologies at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT). He has also completed his undergraduate studies in music composition at the University of Auckland. Joshua was awarded the inaugural Iosefa Enari Memorial Award at the Creative NZ Pasifika Arts Awards in 2022. His recent interest is using Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Extended Reality (XR) platforms to create immersive experiences and storytelling.

Fergus Fry

Fergus Fry is a composer of instrumental, live electronics, and fixed media works that seek to challenge existing stylistic and genre divisions. His recent academic work involved interviewing 26 active New Zealand Composers and examining topics of sustainability within the New Zealand Compositional Landscape (NZCL). This research saw the development of the PAPA model of compositional practice and classifying compositional mediums, directives, motivations.

Alissa Long

Alissa Long (formerly Kuang-Yun Liu) was born in Jordan, raised in Taiwan, and is now permanently based in New Zealand. She studied at Soochow University in Taipei under professor Ting Yi Ma, and finished her Master of Arts degree in 2012. She is a composer, arranger, and educator, with over a decade of experience in creating new music and arrangements for a large variety of musical soloists and ensembles at various levels. With wide-ranging international and local experience in music teaching and a number of different roles in the music industry, Alissa brings diverse inspirations and perspectives to her work. As an international composer, Alissa has a strong interest in combining western techniques with oriental elements, and bringing together multifarious cultural practices.