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Celebrating Pacific music during NZ Music Month

12 May 2006

Hon Judith Tizard, Associate Minister for Arts, Culture & Heritage

Celebrating Pacific music during NZ Music Month

The 2006 Pacific Music Awards reveal a wealth of talented local musicians that should be celebrated, says Associate Minister for Arts Culture and Heritage Judith Tizard and Associate Minister of Pacific Island Affairs Luamanuvao Winnie Laban.

Both Ministers will be attending tonight's award ceremony at the TelstraClear Pacific Events Centre in Manukau. Prime Minister Helen Clark will speak and present the 'Best Pacific Music Album'.

"It is appropriate that the Pacific Music Awards are celebrated during NZ Music Month, because it is an opportunity to celebrate our artists, our creativity and musical achievements," Judith Tizard said.

"The Labour-led Government is committed to a successful local music industry – which supports our people's livelihoods. Our musicians help to define us to the world as a uniquely creative people and contribute to a strong sense of national identity."

Luamanuvao Winnie Laban congratulated the award finalists and said she is excited and proud to see Pacific music thriving in New Zealand.

"Pacific music has grown as a genre and now forms a huge part of New Zealand's cultural life and Pacific identity."

"Our music reflects who we are, where we come from and our place of belonging. The Pacific beat gives New Zealand music a unique flavour," said Luamanuvao Winnie Laban.

Both Ministers said they looked forward to watching the progress of this year's music award winners as they continue to build on their success and take on the challenges of the international music scene.

ENDS

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