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Star-studded line-up announced for Pasifika Fest

Star-studded line-up announced for Pasifika Festival 2006

Auckland City is proud to announce a star-studded line-up for the 2006 Pasifika Festival that features a mix of hot headline acts and budding future stars handpicked from the Expressions Pasifika auditions held last November.

The free Air New Zealand Opening Night Concert will be held on Friday 10 March from 7.30pm to 9.30pm at Western Springs Stadium and promises a snapshot of some of the festival's hottest performers. It will showcase the vast array of Pasifika traditional dance and contemporary song, while also having an emphasis on the cultural roots of some of the Pacific Islands involved with the festival. The line-up of entertainers confirmed for this concert includes:

Tha Feelstyle - a Samoan-born hip hop artist who cleaned up three awards at last year's Pacific Music Awards

Nesian Mystik - founded in the music room of Auckland's Western Springs College in 1999, the group is a cultural mix of Polynesia, bringing together Maori, Tongan, Samoan and Cook Island ancestry. Their infectious blend of Pasifika-infused R 'n' B and hip-hop saw their 2002 album 'Polysaturated' go four times platinum and they have the unprecedented achievement in recent New Zealand pop history of having four singles achieve Top Ten status

Adeaze - a two-piece R'n'B duo whose debut album went to number 1 on the NZ album charts and gained double platinum status selling over 37,000 copies. Mariah Carey sampled their production of (A Life with You) on her latest Award winning Album, "The Emancipation of Mimi"

Sara-Jane Auva'a - winner of 'Best Female Pacific Artist" at the 2005 Pacific Music Awards and hugely popular Pasifika Festival performer. Sara-Jane has a new Pacific sound that fuses R'n'B, hip hop and classic Pacific Island rhythm. She has recently returned from a successful tour of the United States

Julie Ta'ale - a solo performer who sings contemporary R'n'B. She is a former member of girl group Pacific Soul who won the Best Pacific Album at the NZ Music awards 2003

A number of cultural groups including Te Riri O te O Dance Group (Cook Islands) and a Fijian Gospel Choir.

On Festival Day (Saturday 11 March) you can see these performers again as well as enjoying a complete immersion experience of Pacific Island culture. Eight Pacific Island villages will provide everything from workshops and demonstrations to traditional food, cultural performances and handicraft, each showing what it is that makes their culture unique. Festival Day runs at the all-new time of 10am to 5pm this year. The programme also includes the following acts:

Spacifix - winners of previous Expressions Pasifika auditions. A 10-piece group of 15 to 20 year-olds from West Auckland who are fast building a reputation for their captivating and explosive live performances. They will be playing at Waiheke's Little Day In concert (part of the Music in Parks series) on Anniversary Weekend

Dziah - A South Auckland dance crew, comprising 11 dancers aged 17 to 24, who are a multi-cultural group containing Samoan, Maori and Niuean. They recently finished eighth out of 26 international dance crews at the Hip Hop World Dance Champs in Los Angeles

BDS - a talented hip hop crew

Beatrootz - a Wellington-based band who are sure to move the crowd with their unique and catchy tunes. Their original track 'No DJz' took out the '2004 Coke Launchpad' competition

Dcypher- picked from the Expressions Pasifika auditions. A young energetic all girl hip hop dance crew from south Auckland - smooth and professional

Werry Girls - Young vocalists with mature attitude and a strong sound

Nafatali & Aurasta Reggae Band - picked from the Expressions Pasifika auditions. A tight Samoan reggae band who are sure to be crowd pleasers.

Pasifika Festival entertainment director, Rick Tuiasau, says he is excited about the line-up he has booked and his "finds" from the Expressions Pasifika auditions.

"I'm really looking forward to introducing a crop of new Pacific talent to festival audiences" he says.

Pasifika Festival 2006 will be held at Western Springs stadium and lakeside on 10 and 11 March. It starts on Friday with the spectacular Air New Zealand Opening Night Concert at the stadium, and concludes on Saturday with a full day of performances, entertainment and festivities.

Pasifika Festival is one of more than 60 free events provided by Auckland City as part of the Ak@Play summer events programme. It is proudly sponsored by Air New Zealand, Radio 531pi, SPARC (Sport and Recreation New Zealand), The New Zealand Herald, Flava 96one, APRA and the NZ Music Industry Commission, and Western Union Money Transfer. The festival is supported by Fonterra Brands (Tip Top) Limited, McCallum Industries Palm Corned Beef and Spasifik Magazine and funded by Creative New Zealand.

Ends

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