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Major developments confirmed for 2005 Pasifika

12 January 2005

Major developments confirmed for 2005 Pasifika Festival

Auckland City is proud to announce a star-studded line-up for the 2005 Pasifika Festival in March and two new partnerships that will make the opening night bigger and better than ever.

Air New Zealand is returning as sponsor of the Air New Zealand Contemporary Stage for both Friday night and Saturday's action and is also the new naming rights sponsor for the Friday night opening concert at Western Springs Stadium.

The inaugural Pacific Music Awards will also be held at the Pasifika Festival as part of the Air New Zealand Opening Night Concert. The Pacific Music Awards Committee will be presenting five Pacific Music Awards together with the Recording Industry Association of New Zealand (RIANZ) Tui Award for Best Pacific Music Album.

Pasifika Festival's entertainment director, Thelo Meleisea, says introducing the awards to the festival will ensure that Pacific musicians and artists will get the full acknowledgement they truly deserve.

"Having the Pacific Music Awards as part of the festival this year is huge recognition for what the Air New Zealand Contemporary Stage is all about – showcasing the hot Pacific musicians exploding onto the music scene. This was epitomised by Scribe and Brooke Fraser last year who absolutely rocked the Air New Zealand Contemporary Stage.

“The Pasifika Festival is a chance for established and up and coming Pacific talent to get major exposure and I’ve no doubt this year’s festival will help launch some more stars,” says Mr Meleisea.

Before the Pacific Music Awards there will be a spectacular show, featuring headline acts soul diva Sara Jane Auva'a, opera star Ben Makisi, and Wairere - Aotearoa’s answer to Beyoncé, as well as cultural performances, a gospel choir and fire dancers.

On Saturday, the Air New Zealand Contemporary Stage will once again showcase top performances ranging from rap to R n' B. Headline artists confirmed are Ardijah - just back from sell-out tours in Australia, South Africa and the Cook Islands, R ‘n’ B sensation Adeaze, up and coming duo I.D., hip hoppers Dei Hamo, Savage and Alpharisk plus more smooth sounds from Sara Jane Auva’a. Emerging Pacific talents who will be performing include Spasifix and Wairere, both winners of the recently completed Pasifika auditions.

Another new drawcard for the Air New Zealand Contemporary Stage is a two hour hip hop dance competition called "OFF DA HOOK". Held in conjunction with Mai FM, the competition will feature top krews from around Auckland, breaking and performing hip hop group routines.

The 2005 Pasifika Festival is the grand finale of the inaugural three week ‘Celebrate Pasifika’ event which will include exhibitions and performances in film, theatre, arts and crafts as well as some great sporting action.

Pasifika Festival is being held at Western Springs on 11 and 12 March. It starts on Friday with the Air New Zealand Opening Night Concert at the stadium and continues on Saturday with a full day of performances, entertainment and festivities at the stadium and adjacent park.

Pasifika Festival is one of more than 60 free events provided by Auckland City as part of the Ak@Play summer events programme, and is sponsored by Air New Zealand, SPARC (Sport and Recreation New Zealand), Radio 531pi, The New Zealand Herald, Creative New Zealand, APRA, and the New Zealand Music Industry Commission (NZMIC).


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