2021 String Competition Prize Winners
Photo Credit: Adrian Malloch


1. Hill Family Foundation for Art and Music , “HFFAM” (previously known as the Michael Hill International Violin Competition or ‘MHIVC’) is the organiser of the National String Competition 2024  (‘Competition’). Each Competition applicant must agree to these Rules and Regulations as a condition of entering the Competition. By entering the Competition each applicant agrees that they have read, and understood, and agreed to be bound by all of these Rules and Regulations.

2. The Competition opens on 1 July. All applications must be received by HFFAM by 5pm NZST on 1 August 2024 (‘Closing Date’).

3. A person is eligible to enter the Competition, and may enter the Competition, only if that person:

  • is born on or after 14 December 1998; and
  • is a New Zealand citizen, New Zealand permanent resident, or has been a student enrolled in a recognised New Zealand school for two or more consecutive years; and

4. To enter the Competition each applicant must, before 5pm NZST on the Closing Date:

a/ provide all information requested in the Competition Application >>

b/ submit an online audition that:

    • complies with all instructions set out on theCompetition Application;
    • is recorded live;
    • is unedited, except that the audition may be recorded over different recording sessions if the applicant wishes;
    • is performed no earlier than 1 January 2024 (and the date of such performance must be verified upon HFFAM’s request), unless the applicant has obtained prior written approval from HFFAM to submit a recording of an earlier performance;
    • that the applicant’s face and hands must be clearly visible;

c/ pay the application fee as set out on the Competition Application Form;

d/ submit the Competition Application, all requested information and online audition or in accordance with an alternative method prescribed on the Competition Application Form.

5. No person may submit more than one entry into the Competition.

6. The Competition is held in four stages, as detailed below (or as otherwise prescribed by HFFAM):

  • Selection: Applications due before the Closing Date 1 August 2024
  • Round I: 15 semi-finalists compete in Auckland on 14 December 2024
  • Round II: 15 semi-finalists compete in Auckland on 15 December 2024
  • Grand Final: three finalists compete in Auckland on 16 December 2024

8. HFFAM assumes no responsibility for any error, omission, interruption, deletion, defect, failure, malfunction, alteration, delay in delivery, operation or transmission, theft, or other circumstances of any kind, which may affect an entry or an applicant’s participation in the Competition. HFFAM, in its sole discretion, may disqualify any applicant whose entry does not comply with these Rules and Regulations or that HFFAM considers to be incomplete, illegible, forged, inaccurate, misleading or otherwise tampered with in any way, or made by automating or manipulating the entry process or in any other way that HFFAM considers to be inappropriate.  Falsification of information is considered a crime in New Zealand.  HFFAM reserves the right to request additional information from applicants and/or to verify the validity of entries by making such enquiries as HFFAM considers appropriate.


9. No Prize may be transferred, exchanged, or redeemed for cash, credit, or otherwise. The Prizes consist solely of the items identified in these Rules and Regulations. Any expenses and taxes related to the Prizes are the sole responsibility of those awarded such Prize, and such persons should seek independent tax advice prior to claiming a Prize.

10. Each eligible entry for the Competition will be reviewed and judged by an independent selection judge appointed by HFFAM. For a period of up to 30 days after the Closing Date (‘Judging Period’), the selection judge will review the eligible entries and select 15 semi-finalists (each a ‘Semi-finalist’ and together the ‘Semi-finalists’).

11. Each Semi-finalist’s performances in the Competition will be reviewed and judged in person by an separate independent judge appointed by HFFAM. This judge will review the Semi-finalists and select the winners of the Award Prizes (described below).

12. The ‘Award Prizes’ consist of:

  • First Prize’:
    • NZD$5,000.00;
    • list performances and terms with APO and Lewis Eady; and
    • A performance with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra (dates to be decided by Auckland Philhamonia)
    • A recital in the Lewis Eady showroom (dates to be decided by CLEF)
  • Second Prize: NZD$3,000.00
  • Third Prize: NZD$1,000.00
  • Best Performance of New Zealand Commissioned Work: NZD$500.00
  • Best Performance of a movement of a Classical-era Sonata: NZD$1,000.00

14. HFFAM will attempt to contact each Semi-finalist following the Selection Judging Period using the details provided through the Competition Application Form and may require the Semi-finalist to follow further instructions in order to claim the Prize.

15. To claim and/or retain the opportunity to advance as a Semi-finalist, the applicant must, within 48 hours of HFFAM’s first attempted communication with the Semi-finalist under clause 16, respond to HFFAM as instructed and provide confirmation of elements of participation upon request.

In the event that the applicant or participant does not provide any such information or respond in a timely manner to subsequent administrative questions and correspondence to facilitate their Prize, HFFAM may determine that their entry to or participation in the Competition is invalid and that they will forfeit the Prize.  The HFFAM may, at its option, select another Semi-finalist, but has no obligation to do so.


16. Each Semi-finalist is responsible for all expenses associated with their participation including spending money, transport, meals, drinks, incidentals, taxes, passports, visas, vaccinations, gratuities, services charges, insurance and all other ancillary costs. Appropriate insurance is highly recommended to protect against the additional costs incurred in the event of unforeseen circumstances.

17. Entering and participating in the Competition (including claiming, and use of, the Prize) is at each applicant’s own risk and is solely their responsibility. To the maximum extent permitted by law, neither HFFAM nor any of its subsidiaries, related companies, associated entities, employees, contractors, and agents shall be liable for any personal injury, or any indirect, consequential, or special loss, damage, cost, or expense howsoever caused to any person (including through negligence or breach of statutory duty) arising out of or in connection with:

  • this Competition;
  • any acts or omissions of HFFAM; or
  • any Force Majeure Event (as defined in clause 38).

18. Selected Semi-finalists must attend and compete in the Competition in accordance with these Rules and Regulations and must follow all reasonable instructions given by HFAM (or its representatives).

19. All Semi-finalists must attend the Competition welcome activities, official draw, rounds and final (including those in which the Semi-finalist is not selected to compete) and prize-giving ceremony, and are not permitted to change their travel plans unless they have obtained prior written permission from HFFAM.

20. All Semi-finalists must comply with the Competition repertoire requirements as set out, or as otherwise prescribed by HFFAM.

21. Semi-finalists must submit their programmes to be performed in the Competition to HFFAM on or before 1 November 2024. Programme information must include full titles (including K. Op numbers) as well as accurate playing times. No subsequent changes may be made to such repertoire without the prior written approval of HFFAM.

22. Semi-finalists must not perform more than one work by any composer in their repertoire, but may repeat the repertoire recorded for their initial Competition entry in the latter Competition rounds.

23. All repertoire works performed in Rounds I and II of the Competition and the Competition final must be performed by the Quarter-finalist by memory unless the repertoire is a sonata or a NZ work with piano-accompaniment.

24. The programme performance order of Round I and II repertoire is at the discretion of the Quarter-finalist.

25. Final approval of the submitted repertoire will be at the discretion of the HFFAM.


26. Each Semi-finalist will be allocated up to 75 minutes rehearsal time with a pianist designated by HFFAM on between 11 – 14 December or on such other date(s) advised by HFFAM. Semi-finalists that wish to bring their own accompanists to the Competition must bear any and all related costs (including travel and accommodation costs).

27. Semi-finalists must not exceed the maximum timing specified by HFFAM for Rounds I and II (Round I: 20 minutes; Round II: 20 minutes). Time limits will be strictly observed. Semi-finalists exceeding the time limit may have their performance interrupted or stopped.

28. Semi-finalists selected by HFFAM to advance to the final round (“Finalists”) will rehearse with the Competition pianist designated by HFFAM for a maximum of 90 minutes prior to the Finalist’s performance in the Competition performance venue.  They will each receive 30 minutes acoustic rehearsal in the Final Round concert venue prior to their performance in the Final Round.

29. Semi-finalists who are unable to perform when requested to do so by HFFAM may be disqualified from the Competition. In the case of illness or accident certified by an independent medical practitioner, HFFAM may, at its discretion, allow the Semi-finalist to reschedule his/her performance.


30. All decisions made by HFFAM (or its representatives including the judge or panel of judges and Foundation Executive Director) including, without limitation, decisions regarding the eligibility of entries, the conduct of the Competition, the interpretation of these Rules and Regulations, the selection of Prize winners (including the selection of Semi-finalists), will be final and incontestable. No correspondence will be entered into. To the maximum extent permitted by law:

  • no decisions of HFFAM may be challenged on any grounds, including (without limitation) due to any alleged or actual failure of HFFAM or the judge or judges to act reasonably, in good faith, or fairly; and
  • the decisions of HFFAM will remain binding and final even if those decisions are challenged on any ground that they are wrong for any reason.

31. HFFAM reserves the right at any time to:

  • cancel this Competition;
  • supplement or change any condition of this Competition;
  • substitute any Prize (due to unavailability or for any other reason) with a different Prize of equal or greater monetary value;
  • consider or not consider any late application;
  • waive any irregularity or informality in the Competition or any application;
  • change any Competition date.

32. The First Prize winner must fulfil all subsequent performance obligations referred to in these Rules and Regulations and any subsequent agreement entered between the First Prize winner and performance presenters. Performance opportunities are under the management of HFFAM and may include orchestral solos, recitals, chamber music performances, masterclasses and community outreach engagements. All engagements in under these Rules and Regulations are offered to the First Prize winner in principle only and will be subject to final negotiation.

  • Recital at the Lewis Eady Showroom in Auckland is in principle only and will not receive a performance fee. The performance will be offered either in the 2021 or 2022 concert season and may be a full or shared recital.  Repertoire to be approved by the Lewis Eady Charitable Trust.  Any travel expenses incurred to fulfil the engagement is borne by the winner.
  • The performance with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra is in principle only and will not receive a performance fee.  The performance will be offered either in the 2025 or 2026 concert season and may include a movement of a concerto or solo work with orchestral accompaniment.  The performance may take place with a full or chamber orchestra, and be performed as a part of the orchestra’s educational and community outreach programme. Repertoire to be approved by the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra.

33. Any intellectual property resulting from and related to the Competition becomes and remain the property of HFFAM. This includes but is not limited to all intellectual property and any other rights to and in any recordings, photography, videography and/or broadcasts/transmissions (live, delayed or future), in all formats, nationally and internationally, taken or recorded at any time during the Competition including all Competition rounds and concerts. Each applicant hereby agrees to waive all moral rights in such items to the fullest extent permitted by law. The applicants shall have no claim to compensation.

34. By entering this Competition, each applicant consents to their name, image, photograph, performance, interview, and likeness being photographed, recorded, reproduced, broadcast, published, communicated and otherwise used by HFFAM (including on behalf of HFFAM, or as authorised by MHIVC) for publicity, advertising, and promotional purposes (or any other purpose deemed appropriate by HFFAM) through any media, including video recording, video or audio podcast, the internet, live stream, YouTube, printed or electronic materials, radio, television, or any other channel or medium deemed appropriate by HFFAM (‘HFFAM Publications’), anywhere throughout the world in perpetuity and without the need for any reward or compensation, unless otherwise agreed between the parties. Any commercial advertisement will be offered and negotiated separately.

35. Each applicant acknowledges that they have no right to any input in relation to HFFAM Publications. HFFAM has no obligation to consider the applicant’s requests regarding HFFAM Publications and all HFFAM decisions, including, but not limited to, the removal or alteration of any HFFAM Publications, are at HFFAM’s sole discretion and are final. Accordingly, no correspondence will be entered into.

36. Semi-finalists agree to be available for and provide media interviews, photographs, and other promotional activities as requested by HFFAM including to promote the Competition, HFFAM, and HFFAM’s community outreach and educational activities. Semi-finalists must not contact the media in relation to HFFAM or the Competition without the prior written approval of HFFAM.

37. Personal information provided by each applicant may be stored and used by HFFAM:

  • for the purposes of conducting the Competition; and
  • for additional purposes associated with the Competition or HFFAM’s business (such as research, promotion, or marketing activities to provide applicants with information and promotional material about goods or services).

An applicant may request access to, or correction of, personal information held by HFFAM about that applicant by writing to HFFAM. Personal information will not otherwise be used or disclosed by HFFAM, except as required or permitted by the New Zealand Privacy Act 1993 or other applicable laws.

38. Neither HFFAM nor any applicant shall be liable for any delay in meeting, or failing to meet, its obligations under these Rules and Regulations to extent that such delay or failure is caused by any event outside its reasonable control, including but not limited to unforeseen serious personal illness or accident, or national calamity (‘Force Majeure Event’). If either HFFAM or the applicant is prevented from meeting its obligations under these Rules and Regulations due to a Force Majeure Event, it must notify the other party and resume performance of its obligations as soon as it is able to do so, unless otherwise agreed between HFFAM and the applicant.

39. To the maximum extent permitted by law, HFFAM (and its subsidiaries, related companies, associated entities, employees, contractors and agents) disclaim all guarantees, warranties, and representations of any kind (whether express, implied or statutory) in respect of this Competition, any Prize, and the claiming and use of any Prize.

40. If an applicant breaches any of these Rules and Regulations HFFAM may disqualify that applicant from the Competition and any Prize may be withheld or withdrawn, in each case at the discretion of HFFAM.

41. This Competition and these Rules and Regulations shall be governed by New Zealand law and the courts of New Zealand shall have non-exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine all issues and disputes that may arise in relation to this Competition or these Rules and Regulations. Applicants submit to the jurisdiction of the New Zealand courts and agree that the New Zealand courts are a convenient forum in which to resolve any issue or dispute concerning this Competition or these Rules and Regulations.