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University’s inaugural arts festival

University’s inaugural arts festival

Christchurch will come alive next month as a wealth of artistic talent goes on show around the city during the inaugural University of Canterbury Arts Festival, Platform.

The festival will showcase the skills and talents of both University students and staff through a wide range of creative events staged around the city and on campus from 10-26 August.

From opera, music recitals and art exhibitions to avant-garde theatre and public lectures, there will be something for everyone in Platform.

Highlights include Anthony Ritchie’s operatic interpretation of Ian Cross’ The God Boy featuring Canterbury University students under the direction of Elric Hooper; the Red Bus Diary exhibition documenting the travels of Fine Arts student Tim Veling on the city’s buses; a gala concert featuring the University’s Professor in Voice Dame Malvina Major; and the entertaining dinner theatre experience of Dick’s Entertaining Guide starring Richard Till, host of the new television series Kiwi Kitchen.

Festival organiser Tim Chesney said the combination of up-and-coming talent, well-known artists and impassioned performances will make Platform successful and unmistakable.

“It will be a real showcase of what goes on in the University’s College of Arts,” he said.

“Platform is exactly that – a platform for staff and students to show wider Christchurch the flair and skill they possess. I think a lot of people will be surprised at how much world-class talent resides at the University.”

Other events to look out for during the two-week festival include:

- A performance of Antonio Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons by German violinist Roman Nodel and the Pettman Junior Academy of Music Chamber Orchestra;

- An exhibition of art work by Cathryn Shine of the School of Fine Arts at the SOFA Gallery. The exhibition, entitled Sotto un Cielo Avorio uses photography and printmaking techniques to capture the ineffable beauty of Italy;

- Lunchtime Concerts in the Great Hall of the Arts Centre which will feature performances by Gao Ping, Chris Cree Brown and students from the UC Pettman Junior Academy of Music;

- An evening of Italian Baroque music performed by the University’s Baroque ensemble Il Raccolto (The Gathering);

- A concert celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Bunker Studio, the University’s electro-acoustic music studio. The concert will feature works by Chris Cree Brown, John Cousins, John Young and some of the other main personalities who have worked in the studio;

- And several lectures, including the Macmillan Brown Lecture series and a lecture from Sunday Star-Times theatre critic Jim Tully on “How to be an arts critic.”

A full schedule of events can be found at


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