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World of WearableArt (WOW) cancels 2021 WOW Awards Show

World of WearableArt (WOW) has made the tough decision to cancel the 2021 WOW Awards Show, after postponing in late August in the hopes of rescheduling to an alternative date.

Chief Executive David Tingey says the decision had been made in consultation with WOW’s strategic partners, Wellington City Council and WellingtonNZ.

“This has been a very tough decision but we’ve had to accept that we have no other choice. We’ve explored every option with our strategic partners WCC and WellingtonNZ. There are many layers involved in rescheduling an event of WOW’s scale and complexity. Among the factors we considered was the time needed for rehearsals, key cast and crew availability, production partner and equipment availability and the ongoing uncertainty of Aotearoa’s Covid-19 alert levels. In the end we came to the conclusion that we needed to face reality, the risks were just too high.”

“We thank our strategic partners WCC and WellingtonNZ for their continued support through this incredibly challenging time. Together we agreed that this decision to cancel would place WOW in the strongest position possible to ensure its success and sustainability for next year and into the future.”

WOW Founder Dame Suzie Moncrieff says the organisation was working on a new format to complete the 2021 competition.

“It is with heavy hearts we find ourselves in this position. The creative vision, resilience and determination shown by all designers who entered this year and the massive team who work to stage the show each year has been nothing short of incredible. We are working now on how we can complete the 2021 WOW Awards Competition, albeit in a different form. We will announce the new format as soon as we are able to.”

Mayor Andy Foster says: “We are all gutted by this but working closely together it has become clear that the latest Covid outbreak and uncertainties around alert level rules have made the risks and hurdles just too high for WOW to deliver the normal amazing show in 2021.

“WOW brings huge benefits to our city economy, vibrancy and provides significant employment for performers, artists, trades and support teams. We will continue to work in close partnership to support delivery of an incredible WOW show in 2022. To the WOW team, designers, sponsors and all WOW fans the message is ‘WOW will be back on in Wellington.’”

WellingtonNZ Chief Executive John Allen says it is extremely disappointing that this decision has had to be made.

“We feel for the WOW team, the tens of thousands of people who had booked tickets and were looking forward to the show and all the city’s hospitality, tourism and retail businesses who enjoy a huge business boost as a result of WOW and are already facing big Covid challenges. Our heart goes out to them all. We’ll be doing everything we can to attract visitors and drive business activity in Wellington over the next few months.

“WellingtonNZ will work with WOW as they look at a new format to complete the 2021 competition.”

Tingey adds “while this current chapter is incredibly challenging for us, it is by no means the end of the story. We will be back and look forward to once again bringing artists and audiences together to celebrate creativity, possibility, and perseverance.”

All 2021 ticket holders will be contacted directly to confirm whether they would prefer a refund, transfer to 2022 or to support WOW by gifting the full or partial value of the ticket.

© Scoop Media

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