NZ music at Parliament and worldwide

  • Judith Tizard
Arts, Culture and Heritage

Parliament celebrates New Zealand Music Month with a performance by Wellington band Fat Freddy’s Drop at lunchtime tomorrow.

Fat Freddy’s Drop will perform on the steps of Parliament on Tuesday 20 May, 12.45pm-1.30pm.

Fat Freddy’s Drop are taking part in ‘Spacific’, just one of the showcases of New Zealand music taking place during the northern hemisphere summer, says Associate Arts, Culture and Heritage Minister Judith Tizard.

“A showcase of New Zealand contemporary music in New York, a celebration of New Zealand musicians and DJs in London and a performance in Japan by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra are just some of the overseas performances by New Zealand musicians this year,” says Judith Tizard.

In July ‘New Zealand Sounds’, a showcase of New Zealand contemporary music, will take place during New York City’s premier free performing arts festival, Central Park SummerStage, on 13 July. The Summerstage festival spans literature, dance, world and contemporary music and this year includes bands such as The White Stripes, Wilco, Sonic Youth, Elvis Costello & The Imposters and De La Soul.

The acts chosen by the SummerStage festival programmer to perform at ‘New Zealand Sounds’ are: King Kapisi, Pine, Wai and Greg Johnson.

Judith Tizard said ‘New Zealand Sounds’ at SummerStage was a direct result of the World Series showcases of New Zealand music held in Auckland in November 2002.

“Upon his return to New York, World Series delegate Rick Arnstein encouraged the SummerStage organisers to set aside a whole day of the festival for New Zealand music. The artists chosen represent a variety of genres that spoke volumes to the festival organisers about New Zealand’s cultural diversity.”

‘New Zealand Sounds’ is being supported by the NZ Music Industry Commission, Trade NZ and Industry NZ, with government funding from the America’s Cup leveraging fund. New Zealand music showcases in Austin, Texas and Toronto, Canada were similarly supported earlier this year, to capitalise on opportunities to showcase New Zealand and New Zealand music to the world.

The NZ Music Industry Commission, Trade NZ and Industry NZ are also giving support to ‘Spacific’, a celebration of creative New Zealand culture that includes art, music, film and fashion. The central focus of ‘Spacific’ is a series of showcases of New Zealand musicians and DJs in London and Amsterdam from June – August. Artists performing include Nathan Haines, Fat Freddy’s Drop, Wai, Ebb, Concord Dawn, Trinity Roots and Stinky Jim.

In October, the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra will undertake a tour to Japan, as part of the International Performing Arts Festival 2003. The orchestra’s programme in Osaka will feature New Zealand mezzo Helen Medlyn, and a performance of New Zealand composer Douglas Lilburn’s Aotearoa Overture.

“Our musicians and our artists help to shape our identity as New Zealanders, and they make a positive contribution to our culture and our economy,” said Judith Tizard.

“We are helping to ensure our music industry is able to make the most of these offshore opportunities through NZ On Air's Phase Four scheme, New Zealand Music Industry Commission, New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Creative New Zealand, Trade New Zealand and Industry New Zealand.

“We are also showing the world our finesse in other creative areas, for example, the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s announcement of a tour to the UK next year with an impressive programme of works.

“Three years on from our cultural recovery package announcement, it is fabulous that our arts, which have always been world-class, are receiving more and more recognition for their international stature,“ said Judith Tizard.

At a function to be held in Wellington tomorrow, Creative New Zealand will further highlight New Zealand arts in the international arena.

More information:

New Zealand Music Industry Commission.

New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.

Central Park Summerstage