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Red Contributor

Salina Fisher

Composer, Performer

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Born: 1993


Salina Fisher (b.1993) is a Wellington-based composer and violinist of New Zealand and Japanese heritage. Her music has been performed throughout New Zealand and in the USA, UK, Germany, Australia, Malta, and China, with performances and commissions from ensembles including the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, New Zealand String Quartet, Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, NZSO National Youth Orchestra, Stroma New Music Ensemble, Mimosa Ensemble, and Lazarus String Quartet.

Salina studied composition and violin performance at the New Zealand School of Music, and completed a Postgraduate Diploma (Distinction) in 2014 with supervisors John Psathas and Michael Norris.

In 2016 Salina became the youngest ever winner of the SOUNZ Contemporary Award, New Zealand's premier composition prize, for her work Rainphase written as the 2015 NZSO National Youth Orchestra Composer-in-Residence. Rainphase will be performed in 2017 by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra with Music Director Edo de Waart, and by the St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra (USA) with Music Director Gemma New.

Salina has performed on traditional Japanese instruments koto, taiko, and shamisen, and has recently begun exploring Taonga Pūoro, the traditional Māori instruments of Aotearoa New Zealand. Her work Tōrino, commissioned in 2016 by Chamber Music New Zealand for performance by the New Zealand String Quartet, is inspired by the pūtōrino playing of Taonga Pūoro musician Rob Thorne. Salina is also interested in film scoring, and in 2016 composed the score for Misimpressions, a short film directed by Sinead Lau and funded by the New Zealand Film Commission.

Salina was the Overall Winner of the NZSO Todd Young Composer Award in both 2013 and 2014, and also received the Orchestra’s Choice Award for her work Blushing Skies (2014). In 2014-2015 she was Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra's 'Rising Star' Young Composer-in-Residence, and was the winner of the 2014 New Zealand School of Music Composers Competition for her work Komorebi for violin and vibraphone. In 2015, violist Bryony Gibson-Cornish’s performance of her work Reflect for solo viola was awarded the ‘Best Performance of a New Zealand Work’ award at the Gisborne International Music Competition. In 2008 she attended the Beijing International Congress on Women in Music, where she was the youngest featured composer.

As a violinist, Salina has frequently performed as a casual player in the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra since 2012, including in the complete Beethoven Symphonies tour and ‘The Hobbit’ 2 & 3 soundtracks. She has been a member of the NZSO National Youth Orchestra since 2010 and was Concertmaster in 2012-2013. She has had lessons with violinists including Nicola Benedetti, Pietari Inkinen, and Pinchas Zukerman, and was a finalist in the 2013 New Zealand School of Music Concerto Competition. She also holds an ABRSM Diploma in Piano Performance.


2017 SOUNZ Contemporary Award 2016 SOUNZ Contemporary Award 2015 NZSO National Youth Orchestra Composer-in-Residence 2015 Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra Rising Star 2014 NZSO/TODD Young Composer Award (Overall Winner) 2014 NZSO/TODD Young Composer Award (Orchestra's Choice Award) 2014 New Zealand School of Music Composers Competition (Winner) 2013 NZSO/TODD Young Composer Award (Overall Winner)

Composed (9)

Blushing Skies

for orchestra, 5m

Dream 6

for ensemble


for violin and vibraphone


for orchestra


for solo viola, 7m 30s


for string quartet

Unfinished Portrait

for flute, oboe, bassoon and piano


for string quartet, 3m

Performances (1)

NZSO - Berlioz, Debussy & Ravel

For the NZSO's second Masterworks concert in 2018, Maestro Edo de Waart presents music by three g...