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New Zealand opera receives major funding boost

29 August 2003

No of pages: 3 pageno

New Zealand opera receives major funding boost

Creative New Zealand grants support 38 professional arts organisations

New Zealand opera has received a major boost through increased funding from Creative New Zealand to two professional arts organisations, NBR New Zealand Opera and Canterbury Regional Opera.

Creative New Zealand's Arts Board offered NBR New Zealand Opera funding of $1.15 million per year for the next three years while Canterbury Regional Opera was offered $325,000 per year for the next three years.

NBR New Zealand Opera has had static funding for a number of years and this 45 per cent increase (from $791,677 per year for 2001-2003) acknowledges the company's increased level of activity, including regional touring. Arts Board Chair Murray Shaw said that in offering a significant increase to NBR New Zealand Opera, the Board was supporting the company's long-term vision and direction, along with the important leadership role it played in the sector.

"The company has already leveraged considerable private funding but this additional funding supports it to continue developing the artform, provide professional development opportunities, and increase its touring activities to both small and larger centres throughout New Zealand," Mr Shaw said.

NBR New Zealand Opera's recent successful tour of The Barber of Seville travelled to 12 New Zealand centres.

"The Board also welcomed Canterbury Opera's plans to provide South Island audiences with increased opportunities to enjoy professional opera," he said.

Creative New Zealand through the funding decisions of its two boards - the Arts Board and Te Waka Toi - offered a total of $12.6 million, supporting the programmes of activity of the 38 organisations it funds on a recurrent basis (i.e. annual or three-year) for the 2004 calendar year. Nine of the organisations are funded on a three-year basis.

The Auckland Philharmonia also received a boost to its funding from the Arts Board and was offered $1.5 million per year for the next three years. "This major orchestra is one of the many examples of arts organisations that make their funding go a long way," Mr Shaw said. "For every dollar of Creative New Zealand funding, the Auckland Philharmonia attracts approximately $4 from other sources."

Chief Executive Elizabeth Kerr said that with increased funding to Creative New Zealand from Government through Vote Arts, Culture and Heritage, the Arts Board and Te Waka Toi together had an additional $1.25 million this year to invest in the professional arts infrastructure. This resulted in an overall funding increase of 11 per cent to these organisations.

Among the 38 organisations supported by Creative New Zealand on a recurrent basis are regional orchestras and theatres, contemporary dance companies, Mäori arts organisations, national advocacy and service organisations, and experimental galleries.

"The professional arts infrastructure provides critical support for artform development and leadership, at both a regional and national level," Miss Kerr said. "It also means that New Zealanders can enjoy ongoing relationships with these organisations through the annual programme of activities they offer."

A feature of a number of these organisations is the strong, confident New Zealand voice that's emerging and Miss Kerr welcomed this commitment to New Zealand work.

"Audiences now expect New Zealand work to be of a very high standard and many relish the opportunity to hear, see and read this country's stories," she said. "For some of these organisations, such as Taki Rua Productions and Black Grace Dance Company, their entire repertoire is new New Zealand work."

Miss Kerr said that through Creative New Zealand's support for the professional arts infrastructure, the Arts Board and Te Waka Toi were able to fund a range of diverse, exciting activities and services that would benefit the arts sector, provide opportunities for individual artists, develop art practice, and be enjoyed by New Zealand and overseas audiences.

Among the many activities supported are:

* a Capital E's National Theatre for Children production of Monkey, a new work by Lynda Chanwai-Earle exploring the contemporary life of two Chinese children newly arrived in New Zealand

* a new work by composer Anthony Ritchie, Timeless Land, commissioned and performed by Southern Sinfonia

* Auckland Philharmonia's Kiwi Capers, a programme introducing primary and intermediate school children to live orchestral performance

* new scripts by Rawiri Paratene and Roger Hall to be developed by Downstage Theatre

* the continuation of the New Zealand Book Council's Words on Wheels and Writers in Schools programmes, bringing together New Zealand writers and readers

* access to the arts for people in the health, justice, disabilities and refugee areas through Arts Access Aotearoa

* a national tour of a new play in te reo Mäori through Taki Rua Productions

* a nine-centre tour of the South Island by The Court Theatre of David Hare's play, Breath of Life

* new work by Raewyn Hill and Jeremy Nelson commissioned by Footnote Dance Company

* an annual programme of concerts in New Zealand and overseas by the New Zealand String Quartet.


Recurrent funding round 2003-2004

Creative New Zealand has offered grants to 38 professional arts organisations for their programme of activity over the 2004 calendar year. This is a complete list of the offers, which totalled $12,618,110. The amounts for organisations offered three-year funding (shown in italic) have been annualised to reflect the offer for the 2004 calendar year.

Artists Alliance $110,000

Arts Access Aotearoa $278,000

Arts on Tour NZ $127,000

Artspace $290,000

Auckland Philharmonia $1,500,000

Auckland Theatre Company $690,000

BATS Theatre $200,000

Black Grace Dance Company $362,000

Booksellers New Zealand $127,500

Canterbury Regional Opera $325,000

Capital E: National Theatre for Children $262,000

Centre for New Zealand Music Trust (SOUNZ) $142,600

Centrepoint Theatre $383,000

Chamber Music New Zealand $594,000

Christchurch Symphony Orchestra $400,000

Circa Theatre/Theatre Artists Charitable Trust (TACT) $515,500

Dance Aotearoa New Zealand (DANZ) $250,000

Downstage Theatre $490,000

Footnote Dance Company $208,500

Fortune Theatre $385,800

Kahurangi Mäori Dance Trust $133,700

Moving Image Centre $155,000

Museums Aotearoa $50,000

NBR New Zealand Opera $1,150,000

New Zealand Book Council $145,000

New Zealand Choral Federation $135,000

New Zealand String Quartet $165,000

NGC Wellington Sinfonia $230,000

Playmarket $266,500

Southern Sinfonia $250,000

Taki Rua Productions* $315,000

Tautai Contemporary Pacific Arts Trust $90,000

Te Whanau Paneke* $104,000

Te Whare Tu Taua O Aotearoa** $100,000

The Court Theatre $700,000

The Physics Room Trust $149,000

Toi Mäori Aotearoa** $651,000

Tower New Zealand Youth Choir $160,000

* Co-funded by the Arts Board and Te Waka Toi

** Wholly funded by Te Waka Toi

The remaining organisations are funded wholly by the Arts Board

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