April date set for arts festival

Postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Dunedin Arts Festival will be an integral part of a "bottom of the South" festival period during April, 2021.

Planned for April 6 to 24, the re-scheduled Dunedin Arts Festival will follow immediately after the Dunedin Fringe Festival and just before Wild Dunedin and the Dunedin Writers and Readers Festival.

Festival director Charlie Unwin said the April dates would also allow the festival to share shows with the Auckland Arts Festival and Festival of Colour in Wanaka, and would hopefully help attract people to the region.

"Programming-wise we are looking at shows that not only appeal to the wider diverse community, but also after what’s been a difficult time for many, we’ll be looking at more uplifting, positive shows," Unwin said.

The Covid-19 pandemic meant there would be no international shows, but world-class acts would be brought in from all over New Zealand, he said.

A full programme will be launched in February and would include arts festival favourites such as St Paul’s At One and Olveston At Six, along with some free community events.

Appointed after Nicholas McBryde stepped down as festival director after leading nine festivals in the region, Unwin has a background in performing arts — most recently as Nelson Arts Festival director.

The name of the event has changed slightly from Arts Festival Dunedin to Dunedin Arts Festival, and the team has recently moved to new premises in Moray Pl (opposite Mazagran).

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