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11th New Zealand International Science Festival


A multidisciplinary dance performance inspired by the story of Matariki and its origins officially closed the 230+ event-programme of the 11th biennial New Zealand International Science Festival in Dunedin today.

Inspired by the work of University of Waikato Maori astronomer Dr Rangi Matamua – one of this year’s Festival guests – ‘Hahakaranga’ was performed to a capacity crowd at Toitu Otago Settlers Museum. The performance – an inspiring collaboration between science and the arts – followed a 10 day programme of science events held at 24 locations throughout the city.

Festival Director Dan Hendra says the diversity of events on offer attracted huge crowds, with more than half the ticketed events selling out and many more close to capacity.

“What a phenomenal week of challenging people to share our Festival theme and ‘Go Beyond’,” says Mr Hendra.

“With our new science hubs set up throughout the city, we’re reaching and engaging with more people than ever before. In South Dunedin alone, we had 300 people through the doors every day (six times the average 50 on any other given day) while in our Vogel Street venue we had 1500 through the doors.

“And judging by the huge numbers of kids at our events – and the massive smiles on their faces – our vision to inspire a new generation of science lovers has certainly been fulfilled.”

The 12th New Zealand International Science Festival will be held in July 2020, and Mr Hendra promises an even bigger and more action-packed festival programme. Last week the Dunedin City Council committed to $75,000 in festival funding.


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