Lucy Summerfield – pathfinding through music

Lucy Summerfield NZ

The Kāmahi Trust helped me to create a Kaiarahi role (guide/pathfinder) for COMMOTION 2023. I am so thankful for their support in bringing more young people into the fold of the passion and musical talent we have here in Te Tau Ihu o Te Waka-a-Māui (the top of the South Island).

Kia ora, I’m Lucy Summerfield and I have been singing since I could talk. Music has always been a part of my life. In 2019 I won the Hook line and Sing-along songwriting competition and it started me on the journey towards songwriting and performing as a career. I began writing my own songs and entering other competitions. I was lucky enough to be a national finalist for Tangata Beats and a national finalist for Play It Strange as I continued this journey. However, as I came to the end of high school, I started feeling like a career in music was a distant dream. Something unrealistic and unachievable. 

That was before I went to COMMOTION 2022. The event was about building youth confidence and understanding through skills-based workshops, performance opportunities, and through the experience of working collaboratively with other students during a weekend-long wānanga. There was an incredible lineup of tutors including Laughton Kora, Joel Shadbolt and Dayna Sanerivi. Over the weekend there were workshops around different parts of the music industry. Something for everyone whether you were a songwriter, a DJ, a vocalist, a guitarist, a producer, a beginner or someone who’d been performing for years, bands and soloists. 

As well as building on skill levels as performers there were also workshops talking about royalties and copyright. Important knowledge for all musicians that isn’t necessarily taught in kura. There was also a culture of collaboration and connecting throughout the whole wānanga. I met so many young musicians, brimming with passion for music just like me. It made me feel less alone in my pursuit and like my career was achievable. It transformed the way I thought about my future and set me on the path I’m on today where I am studying Music at Massey University. 

This year I wanted to help others to feel the same sense of reassurance and purpose I felt by creating a Kaiarahi role (guiding/path finding) for COMMOTION 2023. The collaboration that happens between students during the weekend can transform the confidence they feel within themselves. However, getting ākonga to the point where they feel comfortable putting themselves and their compositions out there is the first step. In the Kaiarahi role I was able to give students the extra support they needed to share their talents and ideas.

I feel so thankful towards the Kāmahi Trust for their support in getting me to COMMOTION 2023. Because of their support I was able to make the vision of Kaiarahi real. The real proof for me was on the afternoon of the first day. In my role as Kaiarahi I had been keeping an eye on those students who stayed on the fringes and made sure to check in with them each break. In the last break of the first day I went once again to check in on my students and found that all of them were chatting away, engrossed in conversations. It made me so happy to see these young, talented people sharing with one another and feeling comfortable in the space. The Kāmahi Trust has helped to build relationships between students that will change the course of their lives and enrich Te Tauihu forever. 

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