MAINZ (Music and Audio Institute of NZ) has forged a first-rate reputation for its quality programmes covering all aspects of the music industry, where students are provided with a great place to learn and develop, whilst gaining access to amazing music, live sound, and events opportunities.

However, the more profound experience which MAINZ offers are the life-long lessons learnt from time spent there. It’s about connecting with like-minded people and being mentored by tutors who understand what it is to be an artist, and finding the different pathways to success within the music industry.   

APRA Silver Scroll winner, Tony Waine, is Bachelor of Musical Arts Programme Leader (Level 5) at MAINZ; a recognised musician in his own right, with more than 40 years of involvement in multi-award-winning Kiwi rock band, The Narcs, who are still active in the NZ music scene.

He has the pleasure of working with final-year degree students and says virtually every student has found MAINZ to be a place where they’ve felt at home, with other creative people in an empathetic environment. The students have a lot of freedom, but it motivates extremely good results because the staff know and understand so well, he says. “We know it’s not the easiest of pathways, but it can be very rewarding.”  

He commented on rising star Paige Tapara, who spent two years at MAINZ honing her craft. She signed with Arista Records, New York, in 2020.  A subsidiary of Sony Music, the established American label has some of the biggest stars on the planet on their books. Legends like Aretha Franklin recorded with Arista, through to current artists like The Killers, Shawn Mendes and Fall Out Boy.  

“I’m so glad I went to MAINZ because it helped me understand the music industry. I would have been lost without MAINZ,” Paige said. “The songwriting classes really pushed me creatively and it was great learning from industry professionals, ” she added.

Something happens creatively for students in the songwriting process at MAINZ. Pushed out of their comfort zone, they are encouraged to embrace and ‘try on’ different musical genres, producing results for them as they develop their craft.  

Graduate Troy Kingi benefited as well, saying the biggest thing he took away from MAINZ was the songwriting methods. Trying new things to get different results. “I also think MAINZ is a big reason behind me wanting to do ten different genres in my 10/10/10 series. In just one year we fully immersed ourselves in about eight differing genres, styles of music that I was never really fond of previously – I was now getting huge inspiration from,” he said.

MAINZ tutors also emphasise the collaborative approach, because working with a community of people is at the core of what happens in the industry. “Developing good human beings is at the centre of it as well. We’re all working together, no one gets there by themselves. We embrace that. It’s all about participating with others,” added Mr Waine.

Start your music career at MAINZ – go to: or phone 0800 265 526