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Curtain goes up on Festival of Colour 2013


Curtain goes up on Festival of Colour 2013

LAKE WANAKA, New Zealand (April 16, 2013) – Described by festival director, Philip Tremewan as “the best little arts festival in the country”, the 2013 Southern Lakes Festival of Colour began today with sell-out theatre and music performances, the launch of the lakefront billboard project plus the opening of a photographic exhibition inspired by the Canterbury earthquakes.

A perfectly clear, still morning on the Wanaka lakefront heralded the start of six days of movement, colour, music and conversation. Waiariki Parata-Taiapa gave an early morning mihi and karakia before fellow Ngai Tahu representative and festival trustee, Suzanne Ellison spoke on behalf of the iwi.

Philip Tremewan then thanked Ngai Tahu for its longstanding support beginning with the very first festival and also spoke about the close connection between the festival and the land and people of the Southern Lakes region.

Live performance began with Baby O, Scottish Opera’s opera written especially for babies, and back-to-back showings of Ivy, a Capital E National Theatre for Children Production. The packed audience of school children, teachers and parents at the Lake Wanaka Centre were enthralled by this tale of Ivy and her time-travelling cleaning trolley complete with cameo appearances from Shakespeare, Cleopatra and Neil Armstrong.

New Zealand Guitar Quartet played a wonderfully resonant set including works from Cuban, Spanish, Russian and New Zealand composers to a delighted full house. Several pieces were originally composed for full orchestras demonstrating the Quartet’s expertise at arrangement as well as technical playing.

Guitarist Jane Curry described the Central Lakes Trust Crystal Palace as a unique performance setting, adding: “One of the big positives of being a musician is coming to places like this to play.”

Doc Ross’ exhibition 37 at the Lake Wanaka Centre features portraits of artists, writers and other members of the Christchurch arts community who, like all residents of the city, were profoundly affected by the events of 22nd February 2011. Each of the 37 photographs were exposed for 37 seconds and are accompanied by 37 words written by each individual subject to describe their own personal experiences.

With plays Tracing Hamlet at Puzzling World and On the Upside Down of the World at Luggate to come plus music from Fabulous Arabia in Queenstown and NZ soul star Bella Kalolo in Wanaka later this evening, Philip Tremewan said it had already been a superb opening day.

“How wonderful to start the festival with perfect weather and shows which sum up the variety on offer this year. The babies’ faces during Baby O were an absolute picture and plenty of laughs were heard during Ivy and – more surprisingly – the New Zealand Guitar Quartet. Happy babies, happy kids and wonderful music - happy days!” he said.

The 2013 Southern Lakes Festival of Colour runs until Sunday 21 April and is generously supported by Central Lakes Trust, The Community Trust of Otago, Creative New Zealand and Aurora Energy. For further information and ticket sales visit

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