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From Air Ballet To Astonishing Technology

From Air Ballet To Astonishing Technology To Shadow Play

From the deeply serious to the seriously fun, the 2008 New Zealand International Arts Festival hosts the best in international and New Zealand culture. The 2008 programme, which runs from 22 February–16 March, embraces a broad range of styles and encompasses compelling theatre, enchanting music, irresistible dance, absorbing opera, the creme de la creme of writers and captivating visual arts.

With over 800 artists from 29 countries, the Festival runs throughout varied venues in Wellington with the central hub located on the picturesque waterfront. The programme also extends out into the greater Wellington region with travelling shows in Art on the Move.

The opening weekend showcases the vast diversity of the Festival programme with the critically acclaimed TV3 Season of Black Watch, hailed as a cultural landmark of the 21st century, blending comedy, heartbreak, politics and song and the Clemenger BBDO Season of Chekhov’s Three Sisters, arguably the greatest play of the 20th century, with crisp direction from Cheek by Jowl founder Declan Donnellan and a stellar Russian cast. Oscar-winning actress Cate Blanchett directs the Sydney Theatre Company’s 2007 production of Blackbird, a confronting theatre piece which scooped a 2007 Olivier Award for ‘Best New Play’.

Events on the waterfront consist of one of the world's largest interactive artworks, Body Movies, proudly sponsored by Meridian Energy plus the ground-breaking show Secret from Cirque Ici, which enlists Johann Le Guillerm, circus artist, equilibrist, and sculpture manipulator, who will create sorcery under the big top in Odlins Plaza.

New Zealand classical music highlights include Jenny McLeod’s new work The Poet, commemorating Janet Frame’s status at the cornerstone of New Zealand literature, featuring TOWER Voices NZ and the New Zealand String Quartet. The Pacific Blue Festival Club returns to Frank Kitts Park to host entertainment from noon to night spotlighting the devilish late-night acrobatic show La Vie and eclectic folk band with A Hawk and a Hacksaw. Keep an eye out for From Score to Screen on 24th February in Waitangi Park – a fantastic free concert celebrating the sheer diversity of film music, hosted by Oscar Kightley.

Check out for regular updates and podcasts from New Artistic Director Lissa Twomey.


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