Smokefreerockquest & Smokefree Tangata Beats

An annual music competition for intermediate and high school students throughout New Zealand.

Smokefreerockquest & Smokefree Tangata Beats are New Zealand’s only nationwide, original live music, youth events that provide opportunities for young musicians to showcase their musical talents in their regions and, if successful, at the national final competitions.

Smokefreerockquest aims to motivate young musicians to prove their ability and realise the heights they can reach in their music careers. It has been steadily growing over the past 30 years – today two-thirds of all New Zealand secondary schools (over 800 acts) participate in the competition throughout 21 regions, with  audience numbers exceeding 10,000 every year. For the last 32 years, the Smokefreerockquest stage has hosted the original songs of Aotearoas tamariki with our young artists performing live in their regions in more than 40 events around the country. This year due to COVID-19 the 2020 Smokefreerockquest competition will be performed in a virtual competition broadcast online through Smokefreerockquest social channels and website. The finals, however, still plan to be held live in Auckland in September 2020. Check out for more info.  


Smokefree Tangata Beats runs alongside Smokefreerockquest, and focuses specifically on music that reflects our unique identity in Aotearoa New Zealand, our Tangata Whenua and the amazing cultures here in our beautiful country. This event explores and celebrates ways in which identity and culture can be woven into contemporary music through writing, language, sound, actions, topics, styles and/ or flavours reflective of Māori and/or Pacific cultures. In 2019 515 musicians from 62 secondary schools participated in Smokefree Tangata Beats.

Smokefree continues to support Smokefreerockquest and Smokefree Tangata Beats to:

  • engage with youth in a meaningful way
  • empower youth to make positive choices about their wellbeing
  • encourage youth connectedness, a protective factor in preventing youth from starting to smoke
  • to promote being smokefree as part of the New Zealand way of life.

Get involved

Page last updated: 15 Jul 2020