Our Team

The Crescendo Crew all come from years of industry experience. They’ve all received honours and recognitions in their chosen fields. They’ve come together to be a part of Crescendo as they all believe in the kaupapa and empowering the youth of tomorrow.

Mentors

David Atai

Growing up, I wanted to become a race car driver, or drive big trucks. So far, I've been a guitarist, music producer, songwriter, audio engineer, performing artist, in events management, sound design, performed all over the world with my mates (and got paid for it), worked with and learnt from some of the greatest musicians and engineers in the world, won so many awards for my music that I've forgotten most of them, and so on and so on... I didn't really know, until I actually started doing something. But I didn't just do that one thing. I tried everything to do with that thing, and it led me down multiple pathways throughout my life, allowing me to make a living off something I was passionate about and actually loved doing.

David Atai

Growing up, I wanted to become a race car driver, or drive big trucks. So far, I've been a guitarist, music producer, songwriter, audio engineer, performing artist, in events management, sound design, performed all over the world with my mates (and got paid for it), worked with and learnt from some of the greatest musicians and engineers in the world, won so many awards for my music that I've forgotten most of them, and so on and so on... I didn't really know, until I actually started doing something. But I didn't just do that one thing. I tried everything to do with that thing, and it led me down multiple pathways throughout my life, allowing me to make a living off something I was passionate about and actually loved doing.

Riccardo Ball​

Riccardo is passionate about broadcasting and has been working in the radio industry for 25 years and filled nearly every role there is including Breakfast Announcer, Music Director, Producer, Promotions Manager and Journalist. As a mentor with Rawkus Radio and CTOA he works with people new to the industry and helps them develop the tools they’ll need if they want to pursue a career in the wider radio world. Riccardo also balances this mentoring and educating with overseeing the running of the station. Creatively driven, he also consults with bands, works as a radio plugger and has produced and arranged tracks for commercial Rock radio, on top of that he fronts his own band Just One Fix.

Riccardo Ball​

Riccardo is passionate about broadcasting and has been working in the radio industry for 25 years and filled nearly every role there is including Breakfast Announcer, Music Director, Producer, Promotions Manager and Journalist. As a mentor with Rawkus Radio and CTOA he works with people new to the industry and helps them develop the tools they’ll need if they want to pursue a career in the wider radio world. Riccardo also balances this mentoring and educating with overseeing the running of the station. Creatively driven, he also consults with bands, works as a radio plugger and has produced and arranged tracks for commercial Rock radio, on top of that he fronts his own band Just One Fix.

Greg Davis​

I have been involved in music since I was 4, my grandmother directed musicals and I loved being apart of them. I went to Wintec to do a Bachelor of Arts (Majoring in Music Production), after which I started teaching at Te Wananga O Aotearoa for a year, teaching a diploma of contemporary Maori music. I started working for College Hill full time and when available worked with Alternative Education (AE). I was thrown in the deep end and put on tour with Blindspott on monitors, from then the roll on effect was crazy, I worked with Nesian Mystik, Elemeno P, Shihad, along with internationals Deep Purple, Motorhead, D12, DJ Shadow, too many to mention. Recently I have pulled back from touring to raise my own family and work full-time with AE and part-time at Crescendo.

Greg Davis​

I have been involved in music since I was 4, my grandmother directed musicals and I loved being apart of them. I went to Wintec to do a Bachelor of Arts (Majoring in Music Production), after which I started teaching at Te Wananga O Aotearoa for a year, teaching a diploma of contemporary Maori music. I started working for College Hill full time and when available worked with Alternative Education (AE). I was thrown in the deep end and put on tour with Blindspott on monitors, from then the roll on effect was crazy, I worked with Nesian Mystik, Elemeno P, Shihad, along with internationals Deep Purple, Motorhead, D12, DJ Shadow, too many to mention. Recently I have pulled back from touring to raise my own family and work full-time with AE and part-time at Crescendo.

Apprentices

Mahaani Maiava​

Originally found his love and passion for Music through his church and his upbringing in the Ratana Marching Brass Band from the age of 10, he's pursued his passion for Music for the last 10 years and has resulted in many experiences within the Industry as a performer. He's been a frontman for Northland Reggae band One Tribe and has shared stages with Reggae icons such as House of Shem and Three Houses Down. He's a frontman for upcoming Soul & Hiphop band Hyster Floats and has toured all across Aotearoa with EXCEL School of Performing Arts throughout 2018.

Mahaani Maiava​

Originally found his love and passion for Music through his church and his upbringing in the Ratana Marching Brass Band from the age of 10, he's pursued his passion for Music for the last 10 years and has resulted in many experiences within the Industry as a performer. He's been a frontman for Northland Reggae band One Tribe and has shared stages with Reggae icons such as House of Shem and Three Houses Down. He's a frontman for upcoming Soul & Hiphop band Hyster Floats and has toured all across Aotearoa with EXCEL School of Performing Arts throughout 2018.

Tui Merrilees-Horne​

Having started from the comfort of his bedroom over ten years ago, making beats was a way for Tui to create his own world. A classic introvert personality led to his growth being stagnant. That is, until he caught wind of Crescendo, a space that could provide the means for him to grow and succeed. Tui has been with Crescendo since 2018 and in this short time he has made great leaps in his music ventures and will continue to do so under Crescendo’s ongoing growth and apprenticeship development program.

Tui Merrilees-Horne​

Having started from the comfort of his bedroom over ten years ago, making beats was a way for Tui to create his own world. A classic introvert personality led to his growth being stagnant. That is, until he caught wind of Crescendo, a space that could provide the means for him to grow and succeed. Tui has been with Crescendo since 2018 and in this short time he has made great leaps in his music ventures and will continue to do so under Crescendo’s ongoing growth and apprenticeship development program.

Operations

Marcus Powell

Growing up I had many pathways available to me. Some good, some not so good. As a young teen in a successful band I didn't always make good choices. However, I was fortunate enough to have certain adult role models in my life who stood out and supported me. So, when I reflect back on those years, I can clearly see those available choices and hope to inspire positive change in our young people. Crescendo allows us to develop our young people from a heart space. I truly believe that if we ensure their happiness, safety, well-being and value sets are cared for, their pathways will be chosen with more clarity and thoughtfulness.​

Marcus Powell​

Growing up I had many pathways available to me. Some good, some not so good. As a young teen in a successful band I didn't always make good choices. However, I was fortunate enough to have certain adult role models in my life who stood out and supported me. So, when I reflect back on those years, I can clearly see those available choices and hope to inspire positive change in our young people. Crescendo allows us to develop our young people from a heart space. I truly believe that if we ensure their happiness, safety, well-being and value sets are cared for, their pathways will be chosen with more clarity and thoughtfulness.​

Cat

Catherine Percy

Catherine (Cat) joined the Crescendo team in 2017 bringing a background of small business development and social enterprise growth. Cat had a career in the for-profit space in Sydney in property acquisition and development, project and property management. In 2015, having built up substantial experience, she was now ready to follow her heart into the not-for-profit space. She joined a growing social enterprise in Sydney which focused on empowering young adults with a disability. When she moved to New Zealand in 2017, she was attracted to the work Crescendo was doing as she believes strongly in empowering people by helping them realise their own potential. Cat works with the Crew to ensure Crescendo has a sustainable impact with our rangatahi, community and within the Crew itself.​

Catherine Percy

Catherine (Cat) joined the Crescendo team in 2017 bringing a background of small business development and social enterprise growth. Cat had a career in the for-profit space in Sydney in property acquisition and development, project and property management. In 2015, having built up substantial experience, she was now ready to follow her heart into the not-for-profit space. She joined a growing social enterprise in Sydney which focused on empowering young adults with a disability. When she moved to New Zealand in 2017, she was attracted to the work Crescendo was doing as she believes strongly in empowering people by helping them realise their own potential. Cat works with the Crew to ensure Crescendo has a sustainable impact with our rangatahi, community and within the Crew itself.​

Anise Elliott-Neilson​

As BDM for Crescendo I come to work everyday to grow the work we do, so we can maximise the impact we make. Endlessly curious, I am excited about getting to know our clients, sponsors and partners so I can support sound design, events and audio products and services that everyone loves. I bring to every interaction a broad background in corporate services and an education in politics and social development. Having recently joined Crescendo, I am inspired by the talented youth in our music and events mentoring programmes who, despite complicated lives, are so excited to create and express themselves. My goal at Crescendo is to get as many businesses supporting our mission by choosing us for their audio engineering, recording and sound design needs.

Anise Elliott-Neilson​

As BDM for Crescendo I come to work everyday to grow the work we do, so we can maximise the impact we make. Endlessly curious, I am excited about getting to know our clients, sponsors and partners so I can support sound design, events and audio products and services that everyone loves. I bring to every interaction a broad background in corporate services and an education in politics and social development. Having recently joined Crescendo, I am inspired by the talented youth in our music and events mentoring programmes who, despite complicated lives, are so excited to create and express themselves. My goal at Crescendo is to get as many businesses supporting our mission by choosing us for their audio engineering, recording and sound design needs.

Kath Sanderson​

Kath comes from a nursing background, she worked and lived overseas for many years, before returning to NZ and worked for a health charity prior to joining Crescendo in April 2019. Kath’s work involves finding funding to help cover the costs of the Crescendo programmes. She was drawn to the Crescendo kaupapa and is constantly in awe of the amazing talents of the mentors and the rangatahi. She loves the passion to identify and develop people's talents and the opportunities being provided to Aotearoa's future movers and shakers.

Kath Sanderson​

Kath comes from a nursing background, she worked and lived overseas for many years, before returning to NZ and worked for a health charity prior to joining Crescendo in April 2019. Kath’s work involves finding funding to help cover the costs of the Crescendo programmes. She was drawn to the Crescendo kaupapa and is constantly in awe of the amazing talents of the mentors and the rangatahi. She loves the passion to identify and develop people's talents and the opportunities being provided to Aotearoa's future movers and shakers.

Denise Wedding

Denise’s journey began in business studies at Massey University and finding a path that provided financial stability and safety in a world with too many unknowns. It became clear though that this wasn’t a fit for her when it began to hugely conflict with her inner calling. Instead Denise followed her love of plants and medicine to be a part of a community that wanted to care for and help people be well. The form that captured her heart was the Hawaiian Kahuna massage, a merging of shamanism, spirituality, healing and energy work. Denise is currently working in the Crescendo Trust of Aotearoa to create a wellness culture and medium to bring various physical/mental and emotional supports to the CTOA family.

Denise Wedding​

Denise’s journey began in business studies at Massey University and finding a path that provided financial stability and safety in a world with too many unknowns. It became clear though that this wasn’t a fit for her when it began to hugely conflict with her inner calling. Instead Denise followed her love of plants and medicine to be a part of a community that wanted to care for and help people be well. The form that captured her heart was the Hawaiian Kahuna massage, a merging of shamanism, spirituality, healing and energy work. Denise is currently working in the Crescendo Trust of Aotearoa to create a wellness culture and medium to bring various physical/mental and emotional supports to the CTOA family.