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Local Event Sets International Standard

12 January 2004

Local Event Sets International Standard

12th Annual New Zealand Community Trust World Buskers Festival, Christchurch, New Zealand Thursday, 20 to Sunday 30 January, 2005 Entertainment industry contingents, from New South Wales and Victoria, will be hoping to pick up some valuable tips of the trade by studying the New Zealand Community Trust World Buskers Festival when it opens on Thursday, 20 January.

“The Festival has a history of strong links with the international community”, says Festival Director, Jodi Wright. “Each year we attract interest from overseas entertainment presenters”.

John Logan Entertainment is sending a twenty-strong group from its Coffs Harbour company headquarters. That group will be joined next week by representatives from the Melbourne International Comedy Festival.

The Australians believe they can learn some valuable information from Christchurch’s Festival which presents the greatest number of performers and performances, and is also the longest in duration and scale, attracting over 200,000 visitors during the 10 day event.

Unlike most large-scale events, there are several peculiarities unique to a street performance festival. Of particular interest will be The World Busker Festival’s use of multiple open air venues and their management, operations and scheduling.

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Last year the Festival cut the daily set-up time by 25% for its main theatre-style show, the Busker Comedy Club, held each night in the historic Arts Centre, while increasing overall quality – with more space and comfort for spectators and a longer show. Planning times were also reduced, measurable satisfaction rates increased, and operational efficiency improved for the entire Festival. Marketing and promotion costs are an example of the heightened efficiency. Festival’s succeeded in attracting an additional 125,000 attendees at a cost just 16 cents per person allowing a smaller percentage of the overall budget on this function.

“Although we’re the largest street festival in the region, we don’t lose sight of the need to continually earn our reputation for fresh ideas and great talent,“ says Wright.

About the Festival The Festival was founded in 1994 by Festival Trust – a charitable trust established to foster the arts by producing high profile and accessible arts-based events.

The 2005 World Buskers Festival is core funded by the Christchurch City Council. Naming sponsor is the New Zealand Community Trust. Other sponsors include; The CPIT, The Radio Network, TV3, Pacific Blue, The Christchurch Press, Allied Domecq Wines (NZ) Ltd, The Arts Centre of Christchurch, the Loaded Hog, Waho, the Hyper Factory, Placemakers Riccarton, Starbucks, Smokefree, Copthorne Durham, Ticketek and Hadlee Kippenberger and Partners. The Festival is the recipient of grants and donations from the Lion Foundation, The Southern Trust, Scottwood Trust, The Community Trust, Bendigo Valley Trust, The Canterbury Foundation, Caversham Trust, Royal Netherlands Embassy, ASIA 2000, and a variety of other supporters – in kind, contra and financial.


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