A prolific composer, producer and performer, Dudley Benson (Ngāti Pākehā) is fast becoming one of New Zealand's most innovative and dynamic musicians, unafraid to bridge the gaps between contemporary, classical, choral, folk, and popular music. Since 2006 he has released two albums, three EPs, a double-live album and a remix album all through his own record label Golden Retriever Records. A consistent collaborator, Dudley has worked with a diverse range of artists from Vashti Bunyan and Matmos, to Dame Anne Salmond, Cat Ruka and Peter Stichbury. His history of live performances find him presenting both grand-scale nationwide tours in cathedrals and marae and intimate solo shows on the Tokyo club scene.

In all that he creates Dudley's concern, love and passion for Aotearoa is palpable. His 2008 critically acclaimed debut LP The Awakening signalled his distinctly unique musical voice to the New Zealand music scene. Dudley toured New Zealand's historic churches and cathedrals with a striking ensemble of choir, string quartet and taonga puoro authority Richard Nunns, weaving together "memories of New Zealand's colonial past with a personal and emotional nostalgia for childhood."

Following his international debut as a composer for Barbara Morgenstern's Wassermusik Festival in Berlin and his performance of a commissioned work for Auckland Art Gallery, Dudley began composing his long-awaited second album, Forest: Songs by Hirini Melbourne.

A former boy chorister of Christchurch Cathedral, vocal music in its many forms features strongly in Dudley's work: Choral, barbershop and polyphonic vocal looping are signature textures. Forest is recorded almost entirely with the human voice and sung largely in te reo Maori. Inspired by the work of Hirini Melbourne (Ngāi Tūhoe, Ngāti Kahungunu), Dudley set out to interpret and arrange Melbourne's bird waiata, giving voice to his deep concern for the plight of New Zealand's native birdlife. The collection of ‘seven vividly-textured pop pieces that exist somewhere between the traditions of folksong and barbershop, choral anthem and hip hop' was nominated for the 2011 Taite Music Prize, and in 2014 was released as Deforestation - a remix album of radical re-workings by a striking ensemble of international and New Zealand producers.

Dudley continues to present innovative works and performances that defy any attempt to categorise. Following the release of his two albums in Japan by boutique independent label HEADZ, Dudley is currently recording his third album, the final in the trilogy that began with The Awakening and continued with Forest.


Dudley Benson live with Hopey One at the whanau show for Dunedin's 2013 Puaka Matariki Festival.
Dudley Benson performs his own version of Kate Bush's Hounds of Love at St Matthew-in-the-City.
It's Akaroa's Fault (Nurimix) from The Orders, Medals & Decorations EP, Minerals & Rocks 12". Produced by Golden Retriever Records.


A collection of remixes of songs from Dudley Benson's Forest: Songs by Hirini Melbourne (2010).
Recorded almost entirely with only the human voice, Forest is a full-length album of Benson’s interpretations of bird waiata by renowned composer Hirini Melbourne (1949-2003).
Dudley Benson's 2008 debut full-length album.
A collection of remixes of tracks from the first two EPs. Originally released on 12" vinyl in a limited edition of 200. Released 15 November 2007.
A double-album of two concert recordings from 2008 & 2010.


A collection of album artwork.
Born in Ōtautahi Christchurch, Aotearoa
Head Soloist, Christchurch Cathedral Choir
Composition student, University of Canterbury School of Music
Golden Retriever Records set up in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland Steam Railways of Britain EP released in Aotearoa The Orders, Medals & Decorations EP released in Aotearoa Opens for Animal Collective, Casiotone for the Painfully Alone
Minerals & Rocks 12" EP released in Aotearoa
The Awakening LP released in Aotearoa The Awakening: National Church Tour Composes for Barbara Morgenstern's Wassermusik Festival, Berlin
Auckland Art Gallery commission: A Performance in Openness (In Three Parts) The Awakening: Supplementary Workbook published in Aotearoa by Retriever Press
Forest: Songs by Hirini Melbourne LP released in Aotearoa Live with the Dawn Chorus & Cat Ruka national tour Bachelor of Arts, Māori Studies, University of Auckland
Department of Conservation Artist in Residence, Naseby, Central Otago Live Series: Volume One LP released in Aotearoa Roots ebook published by Golden Retriever Press
The Awakening & Forest released in Japan by HEADZ Performance of Forest in response to Te Papa's Kahu Ora exhibition, Te Marae, Te Papa, arranged for harp and vocal effects New Zealand - Japan club tour: Dunedin, Wellington, Auckland (Tiger Translate), Tokyo, Saitama, Kyoto, Kurashiki
Commission to compose Tūī, Tui, Tuia. Premiered at Auckland Art Gallery. Tūī, Tui, Tuia ringtones EP released Curator of NGĀ MIHIZ performance art evening, Dunedin Public Art Gallery, Puaka Matariki Festival Two performances with beatboxer Hopey One, Puaka Matariki Festival Presents Spirit Loop (Cook) for Waterlines II, Puaka Matariki Festival
Solo performance, Matariki Open Late Art Evening, City Gallery Wellington Solo performance, Matariki on the Waterfront, Auckland Deforestation remix LP released New Generation Award Recipient