Luggate inundated with ukuleles, opera-singer Helen
Medlyn is posing as a man, Joe Bennett is showing off his
underpants - what is the country coming to?It is coming to
Wanaka, for the third Southern Lakes Festival of Colour in
The Festival of Colour trust last night launched the 2009
programme, which has been produced on a budget of about
The arts festival will provide 58 performances over six days
from April 28 to May 3.
It will also incorporate the Wild South International Film
Most events will be held in Wanaka venues but several will
also tour to Luggate, Hawea Flat, Tarras, Bannockburn, Clyde,
Arrowtown and Glenorchy.
When asked to single out his festival pick, festival director
Philip Tremewan was unable to turn to just one page in the
Central Otago artist Grahame Sydney will launch both the
Festival of Colour and the Wild South International Film
Festival on April 28, with a premiere of his documentary
Dreaming of El Dorado.
Opera singer Helen Medlyn, of Wellington, who does a nice
sideline in musical theatre and cabaret, starts the music
programme later that night, with her show Hell, Man.
Later in the week, the Wellington International Ukulele
Orchestra will rock the community halls with their sing-along
favourites, including songs by David Bowie, and amazing
audiences with their dress sense.
Christchurch writer Joe Bennett will talk about Where
Underpants Come From as part of the Aspiring Conversations
programme that also includes US journalist Bill McKibben,
Waipara Valley writer Gareth Renowden, Otaki poet Glenn
Colquhoun and British war correspondent Christina Lamb.
Also on the programme are works written or performed by
playwright Dave Armstrong, musicians Mike Nock, Michael
Houstoun, and Dierdre Irons, choreographer Raewyn Hill,
songwriter-singer Don McGlashan and writer-actor Ian Hughes.
Several works have been commissioned by the festival and will
be performed for the first time, including Armstrong's play
Le Sud and Hill's dance work Finders Keepers.
Local artists include the Central Otago Regional Choir
(Faure's Requiem) and Flat Out Productions of Hawea Flat
(Witches Over Wanaka).
There is also an arts trail, garden trail, activities for
children and a free street theatre day.
Full programmes are on websites www.festivalofcolour.
co.nz and www.paradiso.net.
Tickets, priced from $5 to $32, will be released to the
public on February 23.