Traditional Music Fixtures

Traditional Music Fixtures

Each year, Auckland Grammar School musicians are invited to perform at a number of traditional fixtures, including concerts and competitions.

Minister's Plate

The Minister’s Plate and Junior Music Plate competitions recognise the achievement of the finest solo instrumentalists at Auckland Grammar School in any given year. Three finalists from each of the Senior and Junior competitions complete for their respective plates.

The Minister's Plate competition has a long standing tradition within the Grammar community, dating back to 1984 when the late Mr Merv Wellington, then the Minister of Education, officially opened the new Auckland Grammar School Music Suite. He presented a silver plate which has become known as the Minister's Plate. Two years later, the Amos family donated a similar plate establishing a Junior Award.

Many past winners of the Minister's Plate have since established notable careers in Music including S. H. Amos '84, B. R. Hoadley '90, H. Wong Doe '90, J. J. S. Chen '98, T. T. Hutchinson '06 and J. C. Hu '12.

Form 3 Piano Cup

The Form 3 Piano Cup was established in 2017 by C. Chen ’13, who donated the prize-money he received from winning the prestigious Ronisch Piano Competition to the School to make this competition possible.

The competition consists of initial heats followed by a Final where each of the finalists prepare a set work, as part of a longer programme.  The finalists then have the opportunity to work with the adjudicator, who is a well-known Auckland pianist and educator, in a masterclass setting.

Winter Concerts

Towards the end of the musical season, with festivals and competitions nearing completion, the Department holds two Winter Concerts to showcase a variety of performing groups to parents and invited guests. Performance Groups include, but are not limited to, the Symphony Orchestra, Wind Band, Premier Concert Band, Chamber Music, Grammar Virtuosi, Grammar Voices, Grammarphonics, Big Band and the Pipe Band.

Performance Days

For many years, Auckland Grammar School's music groups have visited local intermediate and primary schools to inspire future generations of Grammar students to begin their musical careers.

Students from Grammar give a small concert and talk about the groups, enabling local music teachers to draw on our groups as a stimulus once we've gone. The programme is a huge success and our musicians look forward to attending the Performance Days each year.

The University of Auckland Graduation Parades

The University of Auckland holds three graduation ceremonies each year in May and September. The Pipe Band leads the senate and graduands through the streets of Auckland, and along Queen Street to the graduation ceremony.

This is a long-standing tradition that forms an integral part of the Pipe Band's activities for the year, including marching and playing as a well-rehearsed group.

Music Competitions

Competition in Music helps to ensure our performance groups constantly strive for higher standards, and provides top quality performing opportunities in world class performing arts venues.

Our Music Performance groups enter a number of Regional and National competitions each year including, but are not limited to, the KBB Music Festival (KBB), the Chamber Music Competition, The Big Sing competition, and Smokefree Rockquest.

Battle of the Bands

In memory of former student Cameron Wilson '08, the Battle of the Bands competition takes place in the Centennial Theatre. Student-led Rock Bands compete and showcase their talent in front of parents and friends.

Adjudicators judge the performances on factors such as presentation, accuracy, tuning, ensemble and musicianship.

Jam in the OBP

This event hosts performances by a variety of Auckland Grammar’s music groups in an informal setting to thank staff, parents and friends for their support of the Music department throughout the year.  

Performance Groups include, but are not limited to, Grammar Virtuosi, Grammarphonics, Chamber Groups, Pipe Band, Jazz Combo and the Big Band.