APRA Children's Music Awards & the finalists are...

Monday 28 June 2010, 2:09PM

Launched in 2008 to celebrate the growth and strength of children’s music in New Zealand, the APRA Children’s Song of the Year and What Now Children’s Video of the Year recognise New Zealand children’s music for what it is: a rich variety of fantastic fun for kids and parents alike. 

Finalists for the 2010 APRA Children’s Song of the Year are Rob Wigley for the Mr Roberelli song ‘A Goat Called Ken’; 2008 Song of the Year co-winner Claudia Gunn for ‘Home Sweet Home’, and John Phillips with ‘Kia Kaha Tuatara O Takapourewa’. 

Another 2008 winner features in the finalists for the What Now Children’s Video of the Year; The Funky Monkeys return with ‘In The Summer’; as are finalists for 2008 Fatcat & Fishface back with their video best ‘Happity’ and rounding out the video finalists, longtime children’s performer Kath Bee with ‘Individuality’. For the last few weeks, What Now viewers have been voting for their favourite video via, voting is open until the 4th of July – so check them out and have your say. 

The APRA Children’s Song of the Year, judged by an independent panel, celebrates the songwriters and composers who write for the children of New Zealand. Partnering with perennial kids favourite television programme What Now, their viewers vote for the What Now NZ Children’s Video of the Year - so this award is a true “kid’s choice”. 

Both awards are to be presented at StarFest the finale event of Christchurch City Council’s annual two week KidsFest on July 16 at the James Hay Theatre. 

Rob Wigley father of two pre-teen girls and teacher at Titirangi Rudolf Steiner School, was inspired by visits from a mysterious figure ‘Mr Roberelli’. Mr Roberelli would whisper snippets of melodies and lyrics in his ear, and the kernels of songs seemed to come out of thin air. Mr Roberelli has since inspired his own band and a host of his songs featured in the recent 48hour film competition.

Claudia Gunn - Becoming a mum was a natural inspiration for singer-songwriter Claudia Gunn to tailor her melodic indie-folk songs to a younger audience. Lullaby Time, written for her son Dylan and approved by his peers at daycare and playgroup, was joint winner of the 2008 APRA Children's Song of the Year Award. Since then, daughter Ella Grace – the new kid on the block – has been the muse for Claudia’s latest series of tunes for kids.

John Phillips is a trained Primary school teacher who works as a music specialist in three Nelson Primary schools. He is passionate about the positive role that music plays in the lives of children and sees the rewards on a daily basis that participation in a vibrant arts programme brings. He has completed 5 Albums of original Children’s music and loves to hear children singing with enthusiasm, energy and accuracy.

Fatcat & Fishface's cheeky style has been compared to Spike Milligan, Roald Dahl and their fellow New Zealanders, Flight of the Conchords. Since 1997 they have released five albums & a greatest hits collection. Their animated music videos have all debuted at the NZ International Film Festival (Animation for Kids).

The Funky Monkeys since 2003 The Funky Monkeys have been singing and dancing for young audiences throughout New Zealand as a veritable ‘super-group’ for kids. In 2008 their music video for their educational song about manners, ‘The Thank You Song’, won the What Now Children’s Video of the Year.

Kath Bee through Learning Media Ltd has had her songs feature in Primary Schools since 2002. The prolific performer released her first album in 2007, the popular ‘Dragons Under My Bed’ and another two albums since.

APRA Children’s Song of the Year – finalists:

  • ‘A Goat Called Ken’ by Rob Wigley performed by Mr Roberelli
  • ‘Home Sweet Home’ by Claudia Gunn
  • ‘Kia Kaha Tuatara O Takapourewa’ by John Phillips 
  • What Now NZ Children’s Video of the Year – finalists:
  • ‘Happity’ by Fatcat&Fishface – video created by Derek Sonic Thunders & Robin Nathan
  • ‘In The Summer’ by The Funky Monkeys – video created by Delight Video Group
  • ‘Individuality’ by Kath Bee – video created by Big Backyard Productions 
  • The winners will be announced in Christchurch on Friday 16 July at the James Hay Theatre.