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Royal NZ Ballet Secures Major Sponsor

Media Release for immediate use 28 October 2008

Royal New Zealand Ballet Secures Major Sponsor For Three More Years

The glitzy opening night of the Royal New Zealand Ballet's Don Quixote season will be cause for extra celebration this week, as principal sponsor Meridian announces it will renew its sponsorship for a further three years.

New Zealand's largest renewable energy generator Meridian is the Ballet's principal national sponsor. The official announcement will take place at the opening night of the Meridian Season of Don Quixote, in Wellington this Friday.

Meridian has been the major sponsor of the Royal New Zealand Ballet since 1999. Meridian Chief Executive Tim Lusk says Meridian is excited about being involved with the Royal New Zealand Ballet for another three years. "Meridian is proud to support the Royal New Zealand Ballet's quest to take the art of ballet to the next level. We've been delighted to put our name behind many dynamic and ground-breaking works from this highly acclaimed, and much-loved company," he says.

"We've been partners in bringing productions such as Witi Ihimaera's The Wedding and now Don Quixote to captivated audiences up and down the country with rave reviews. We want to continue to support the ballet company in helping large numbers of New Zealanders enjoy such memorable events," he added.

Amanda Skoog, General Manager of the Royal New Zealand Ballet, says the support from Meridian is invaluable.

"We literally wouldn't survive without Meridian. The renewal of their sponsorship is a very proud moment for us as it reflects the calibre of the Royal New Zealand Ballet team. It shows what can be achieved when arts sponsorship is valued and respected," she says.

"We feel at home with Meridian. Both companies value hard work and professionalism but we are also creative and love what we do - and it shows. We are proud to be associated with Meridian and know that they are with us every step of the way," she added. The new sponsorship deal comes into effect from June 2009.

The Meridian Season of Don Quixote performs in Wellington until 8 November at the St James Theatre. The season then tours Invercargill, Dunedin, Christchurch, Palmerston North, Napier, Auckland and closes in Hamilton. Leaping to life in a riot of bright colours, music and fun, Don Quixote tells the classic story of an ageing Don on his final quest for adventure.

ENDS

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