Nelson Arts Festival a Record Breaker
The Nelson Arts Festival wound up yesterday after 12 days of packed houses, sell-out shows and record attendance at theatre, dance and musical events.
Nelson City Council festival producer Sophie Kelly said the festival had been a record breaker.
“In all we had 40 sell out shows - several of them sold out before the festival even started, we put on extra shows and they filled up as well,” she said. “We have sold a record of 80% of all tickets which is very very high by the standards of any arts festival.”
Festival creative director Annabel Norman put the success down to programming and profile.
“We certainly got the programme right with a variety of theatre, dance and music that appealed to a wide audience,” she said. “I think we are bringing in more out of towners and developing more audience among Nelsonians as the word spreads and we reach people who perhaps don’t usually go out to live shows.”
As a council produced event, the Nelson Arts Festival offers more community shows and free events than
other arts festivals, and these also attracted record crowds.
The Port Nelson Masked Parade, More FM Carnivale, Westpac Red Square schools’ performances and the Festival Family Finale all beat the weather odds to go ahead with bigger attendance than in past years.
The festival is the only regional festival to be held annually and is produced by the Nelson City Council as a celebration for locals and an added attraction for visitors.