Michael Pilaar was deeply passionate about music and now his passion and his life will be immortalised through the Michael Pilaar Memorial Music Fund.
This weekend, for the first time, four scholarships will be awarded to talented young Rotorua musicians from the fund, which was set up in Michael's memory after he died from melanoma in June 2017, aged 19.
The Pilaar family created the fund in honour of Michael and to support the development of young people's musical skills.
Michael's mother Elizabeth Pilaar said she did not imagine there were many things worse than losing a child but focusing on something positive in his memory had helped the family with the grieving process.
"It's a really positive focus, losing a child is clearly one of the hardest things to deal with. It's an ongoing thing and that grief never leaves you, it just becomes a little bit smaller and you learn to deal with it.
"Being able to bring something positive, for me, it helps redeem Michael's death. It brings something good out of something that's awful. For us as a family, that's huge and gives us the chance to keep Michael's name alive and talk about him."
Musicians aged between 8 and 18 within the Rotorua and Taupō Districts could apply for the grant managed by the Geyser Community Foundation.
The recipients of the four $500 grants will be announced at a variety concert held at Western Heights High School on Sunday. The fund was established through fundraising efforts and left to accrue interest for a year.
The plan now is to use the interest to award grants annually.
"We're really excited to award the first four scholarships, we've chosen the recipients and we can't wait to celebrate these four young people," Pilaar said.
"It's really awesome for us as a family to be able to remember Michael in this way and celebrate in such a positive way," Pilaar said.
She said the concert was also an opportunity for Rotorua's talented young musicians to perform together.
"It's a variety concert and all the performers are school-aged. There's a jazz band, dance, chamber music, solo soprano, solo violin, solo pianist - a real range. My idea is to pull together some of Rotorua's finest talents across the arts to encourage and inspire one another.
"It's so easy for artists to do their own thing and not work or perform with others. Often a dancer will never see a pianist or vice versa so that's always one of my goals and absolutely something Michael was enthusiastic about too.
"He'd certainly be very supportive of it, he was supportive of music in any form that people enjoyed."
The show is being held from 2pm on Sunday at the Western Heights High School hall and tickets are restricted to 100 people due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Tickets can be bought from City Books and Lotto - there will only be door sales if there are tickets left over.