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Arts and Minds

03 Feb 2011
Some of the biggest names of the 2011 Auckland Arts Festival have signed on for the Arts and

From Jack DeJohnette and Sarah Lucas, to Witi Ihimaera and Chinary Ung, some of the biggest names of the 2011 Auckland Arts Festival have signed on for the Festival’s Arts and Minds programme, a line-up of over 35 artist talks, workshops and master classes – most free to attend - taking place during the 2-20 March Festival season.

The Arts and Minds programme invites Festival-goers behind-the-scenes of a major multi-arts festival, and the creative processes of the artists involved.    The weekday In Conversation series of artists talks, held at lunchtimes in the fabulous Spiegeltent (the Festival Garden in Aotea Square) feature Festival artists talking about their work, their inspirations and their process.  The extensive series of Arts and Minds workshops and master classes allow local arts practitioners to learn from some of the best in the business. 

Auckland Arts Festival Chief Executive, David Inns says the Arts and Minds programme is an important part of the breath and depth of an arts festival – a dimension the Festival brings to Auckland that individual touring shows are not able to offer.

“A Festival is more than the sum of its parts – the Festival’s special context, community and cross-pollination make it much more than a programme of work that just happens to be on at the same time,” he says.  “Arts and Minds is one of the ways we enhance the experiences of our artists and audiences, and reach out to new Festival-goers.

“I’m very proud of this year’s Arts and Minds programme, which has more than doubled in scale since 2009, and sits alongside our other free programming, and the Education programme which makes low cost Festival tickets available to primary and secondary school students.” 

Auckland Arts Festival Education and Public programmes manager, Tiffany Harkess, says she is humbled and inspired by the generosity of the artists involved – and the delight they take in sharing their practice with other artists, and the general public.

Arts and Minds provides a context for artistic exchange, between New Zealand artists and cutting edge performers who are visiting from around the world, sharing sometimes very personal creative processes and inspiration for their work,” she says.

“The Arts and Minds programme is part of Auckland Arts Festival’s ongoing commitment to artistic development in Aotearoa.”

Highlights of the master class programme include a special demonstration workshop session with legendary jazz drummer Jack DeJohnette, contemporary dance workshops with Gregory Maqoma, and members of the Maguy Marin Company, and an intensive master class from acclaimed Irish performer Conor Lovett of Gare St. Lazare Players.  Berlin-based virtuoso early music orchestra, the Lautten Compagney, will be in residence at The University of Auckland’s School of Music, taking a range of free master classes and workshops for instrumentalists.

In Conversation highlights include creator of The Manganiyar Seduction, Roysten Abel, talking to Indian Ink Theatre Company’s Justin Lewis (Krishna’s Dairy, The Guru of Chai), U Theatre’s artistic director and musical director in discussion with Anna Marbrook on the way that Buddhist practice shapes their art, and O Cambodia composers Chinary Ung (winner of the Grawemeyer Award) and Him Sophy in conversation with documentary maker Annie Goldson.

Festival ambassador Te Radar chairs a panel discussion on the often controversial topic of reviewing, Irish actor/director duo, Conor Lovett and Judy Hegarty, talk to Professor Chris Ackerley (Otago University) about the process of transferring Beckett from page to stage, and young members of Massive Company and UrbanYOUTHMovement discuss their experiences as emerging artists.

Special Arts and Minds sessions include Witi Ihimaera and poets from Toi M?ori’s Words in Motion project sharing lyrics and poetry; an artist talk from visual arts star Sarah Lucas (of YBA fame) as part of her Two Rooms Gallery residency; and sneak peek tours of Q Theatre. 

All In Conversation sessions are free and open to the general public.  Workshops and master classes are either free or low cost, and many are open to observers.  The full Arts and Minds programme follows – visit for the latest details.


12.30 – 1.30pm in the Pacific Crystal Palace Spiegeltent, Festival Garden Aotea Square - FREE 

Wed 2 March – Te Radar talks reviewing with a panel of critics

Self-proclaimed opinionist and sometimes art reviewer, Te Radar, is joined by a panel of erudite Auckland critics, amongst them Metro’s Simon Wilson and Auckland Arts Festival Director David Malacari to present a ‘how-to-guide’ to arts reviewing in this fair city.  Assess Auckland’s arts review landscape alongside these arts experts.

Thur 3 March – Spoken Word with Witi Ihimaera and Toi M?ori

Icon of New Zealand literature and leading indigenous writer Witi Ihimaera reads from the lyrics he composed for Ihimaera, a special Festival concert featuring 12 New Zealand recording artists performing songs inspired by his rare and moving words.  This is a chance to hear Ihimaera’s thoughts on the unique song writing process. Also adding their fresh new voices to the mix are performance poets Tarah Rudolph Ahikau and Troy and Luther Hunt from Toi Maori currently touring with the project Words in Motion.

Fri 4 March – Loin… (Far…) Rachid Ouramdane in conversation with Dr Nick Rowe

Rachid Ouramdane, a second generation French performer of Algerian heritage, and a powerfully athletic and intellectually compelling choreographer is joined in conversation by Dr Nick Rowe, lecturer in dance at the University of Auckland. Ouramdane creates interdisciplinary dance-theatre that explores the political, sociological and psychological impacts of geo-cultural upheaval while Dr Nick Rowe has researched, created and taught dance in some of the world’s most traumatised communities in Africa, Asia and the Middle East.  In this vital and potent session the pair talk about the origins of Loin… (Far…), Ouramdane’s semi-autobiographical work which explores colonialism, history and the damaging affects of war by drawing on testimonies from his mother and the journals his father kept while in the French Army during its occupation of Algeria.

Mon 7 March – Massive Company and UrbanYOUTHMovement: Emerging artists in conversation with Ben Crowder

Massive Company and UrbanYOUTHMovement are performing arts companies focused on providing professional opportunities for emerging artists. Alongside projects run by the Young & Hungry and Play it Strange Trusts, these companies point to a bright future for young New Zealand artists. Join this panel of creatives as they share with Ben Crowder, theatre director and teacher, their perspectives on what it is like to be a young artist in New Zealand performing arts.

Tue 8 March – Gregory Maqoma speaks about Beautiful Me

Rising South African choreographer Gregory Maqoma, hailed as a dance-hero in his home city of Johannesburg, refers to himself as a cultural cocktail, saying that life in a city like Johannesburg provides a perfect platform for cross-cultural production, especially in dance.  Meet Maqoma and hear first-hand about the creation of Beautiful Me – an autobiographical dance work developed in collaboration with three prominent choreographers from different cultures and with different dance languages – Akram Khan (UK), Faustin Linyekula (Congo) and Vincent Mantsoe (South Africa). 

Wed 9 March – Performance/Art: Mark Amery, Emma Bugden, Sue Gallagher, Tracey Collins in conversation with Ariane Craig-Smith

What is the role of performance in visual art? Performance art and performing arts – what is the difference? The re-staging of Jim Allen’s seminal 1974 performance series Contact signals the strong presence of performance as both theme and method across several Festival exhibitions. These include performance design survey Fly-Tower and group show Alicia Frankovich / Laresa Kosloff / Ruth Proctor at Starkwhite, bringing together the work of three international artists who address the relationship between performative body and artwork object. Curator, art writer and former Playmarket Director Mark Amery, ARTSPACE Director Emma Bugden and the creative team behind Fly-Tower, Sue Gallagher and Tracey Collins join Festival Visual Arts Manager, Ariane Craig-Smith to discuss the relationship between performance and art. 

Thur 10 March –  Dance Theatre: Maguy Marin Compagnie in conversation with Dr Carol Brown

Master choreographer Maguy Marin’s seminal work May B celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2011.  This once radical dance-theatre work undergoes some smart analysis at this lunchtime discussion as members of Marin’s company and Dr Carol Brown, award winning choreographer, and senior lecturer at the University of Auckland’s Dance Studies programme, assess the ongoing relevance of the work and its place in the contemporary dance scene.

Fri 11 March – The Manganiyar Seduction: Roysten Abel in conversation with Justin Lewis

 Join Royston Abel artistic director of The Manganiyar Seduction as he explains to Indian Ink writer, producer and director Justin Lewis his staging of this incredible performance. The Manganiyar Seduction is an innovative and astounding theatre production born from a fascinating musical practice. Considered the bearers of tradition, it is the responsibility of the Manganiyars – the largest hereditary musician caste in India – to keep the musical repertoire and folk knowledge of their caste alive. Come and hear about the staging of this masterpiece in a new cultural context.

Mon 14 March – Ng? Hau e Wh? – The Four Winds: Leilani Kake, Luisa Lefao-Setoga, Ema Tavola in conversation with Kolokesa Mahina-Tuai

Luisa Lefao-Setoga a Samoan mother of four was 6 months pregnant when video installation artist Leilani Kake filmed her for the thought provoking installation Nga Hau e Wha – The Four Winds. In a panel discussion moderated by Kolokesa Mahina-Tuai, the artist, her subject and Ema Tavola, curator of Fresh Gallery Otara where the installation is exhibited, examine taboos in Pacific Island and Maori communities and their impact on women’s bodies and health.

Tue 15 March – O Cambodia’s Him Sophy and Chinary Ung in conversation with Annie Goldson

Contemporary Cambodian composers Him Sophy and Chinary Ung recollect their experiences during the Pol Pot regime – Sophy spent four years in a Khmer Rouge labour camp and Ung, living in the USA at the time, assisted Cambodian refugees, many of them musicians, to record and perform Khmer music there.  The pair share these experiences with Annie Goldson (QSM), award winning documentarian and director of Brother Number One, an exploration of the history of Cambodia and the devastation of the Pol Pot Regime. 

Wed 16 March – U Theatre in conversation with Anna Marbrook

High above the city of Taipei on Laochuan Mountain U-Theatre’s artistic director Liu Ryo-Yu and musical director Huang-Chih-Chun combine Western theatrical techniques with Zen Buddhist philosophy to produce a unique theatre of movement and percussion such as The Sound of the Ocean.  In conversation with film and theatre director Anna Marbrook, the pair discuss the way their Buddhist practises and understandings shape their art.

Thur 17 March - The Show Must Go On: Cast and directors speak with Mark Harvey

French choreographer Jerome Bel’s restaging of The Show Must Go On involves a group of locals brought together for an intensive development period in preparation for performance.  They are a mix of professional and amateur performers of diverse ages, ethnicities, shapes and sizes.  The tour directors, Auckland based cast, and Jerome Bel enthusiast Mark Harvey from The University of Auckland’s School of Dance come together to interrogate Bel’s process, his conceptual approach to performances and audiences and the particular flavour New Zealanders bring to his signature piece.

Fri 18 March Conor Lovett and Judy Hegarty Lovett in conversation with Professor Chris Ackerley

An hour of enlightenment ensues as Professor Chris Ackerly, Samuel Beckett scholar from Otago University, and esteemed Beckett interpreters Conor Lovett and Judy Hegarty Lovett tackle the masterful Irish playwright’s oeuvre. Professor Ackerley addresses Beckett’s texts, examining his apparent preoccupation with the Bible, and with cemeteries in First Love, as well as the lasting impact of Beckett’s father’s death on his writing.  The Lovetts, who have considerable experience bringing Beckett's prose works to the stage, focus on the humour, compassion and accessibility of Beckett's writing and shift the conversation from page to the stage. Be sure to join in what will be, without doubt, an entertaining and intelligent conversation.

Brokentalkers post-show talk

Join the Silver Stars writer Sean Millar and directors Feidlim Cannon and Gary Keegan after the Friday night performance, along with the actors, many of whom point to Silver Stars as their first appearance on stage, as they share their experiences of being openly gay in Ireland. Actors explore their motivations for being involved in such an emotionally challenging project and Millar, Cannon and Keegan discuss the inspiration for the show and the creative processes used to bring it to the stage.

When Fri 4 March, 8.30pm

Where Concert Chamber


WORKSHOP: Shaping the beat with Jack DeJohnette

An opportunity to engage with innovative jazz percussionist Jack DeJohnette as he demonstrates, using examples from his extensive repertoire, how he shapes, moulds and contorts the beat. 

When Fri 4 March, 2.00pm - 3.30pm 

Where Studio One, Kenneth Meyers Centre

Cost $15 

Bookings [email protected]


WORKSHOP: Devised theatre with Massive Company

A full-day workshop for 15-18 year olds offering a great chance to experience devised theatre. Led by Sam Scott and members of Massive Company, participants are presented with the original provocations used by writer Lennie James when he developed the script for Havoc in the Garden

When Sat 5 March 9-3.30pm

Where Aotea Centre

Cost $25

Bookings [email protected]


MASTER CLASS: Creating dance with Gregory Maqoma

A fantastic opportunity for experienced dancers to listen to and learn from Gregory Maqoma, one of South Africa’s foremost contemporary dancers and choreographers, as he describes the creative impetus behind his work Beautiful Me

When Sun 6 March 10am-12pm

Where Unitec

Cost $25

Bookings [email protected]


Where Unitec

Cost $25

Bookings [email protected]


WORKSHOP: Musical instrument making with Linsey Pollak

Make your own panpipes ... learn how to tune them and even how to make one from a carrot! Only 10 places available ... 10 years and up.

When Sat 12 March, 2.30pm - 3.30pm

Where Herald Theatre

Cost $10 

Bookings [email protected]


MASTER CLASS: Dance Theatre with Compagnie Maguy Marin

One of the most significant figures in the French new wave, Maguy Marin has been at the forefront of contemporary dance. At this session, work with dancers from Compagnie Maguy Marin and experience Marin’s unique dance theatre approach.

When Sat 12 March, 10.30am - 12.30pm

Where Unitec

Cost $30

Bookings [email protected]


MASTER CLASS: Solo-performance and interpretations of prose with Gare St Lazare Players

Acclaimed Irish performer Conor Lovett of Gare St. Lazare Players leads actors with theatrical training in an intensive, hands-on acting session. Participants must have attended a performance of either The End or First Love.

When Sun 20 March, 10.00am - 12.00pm

Where Unitec 

Cost $50 

Bookings [email protected]



All master classes and workshops are open to observers, no booking necessary. To participate and find out more about email [email protected]  


MASTER CLASS: Stylistics for Singers / Vocal Ensembles with Lautten Compagney* conductor Wolfgang Katschner and NBR NZ Opera

When Sat 5 March, 10.00am – 1.30pm

Where Studio One, Kenneth Myers Centre, 74 Shortland Street



MASTER CLASS: Lautten Compagney* Strings Performance

Solo sonatas, suites and other solo repertoire for violin (strings) from the early and late baroque with particular emphasis on historically informed playing techniques and stylistics.

When: Wed 9 March, 9am - 11am

Where: Music Theatre, School of Music, 6 Symonds Street



MASTER CLASS: Lautten Compagney’s* Eduard Wesley - Oboe

A focus on baroque and classical oboe solo repertoire with particular emphasis on historically informed playing techniques and stylistics.

When Wed 9 March, 2pm - 5pm

Where Studio One, Kenneth Myers Centre, 74 Shortland Street



MASTER CLASS: Lautten Compagney’s* Martin Ripper - Recorder and Flute Consort

Renaissance and baroque repertoire for solo recorder and flute consort with particular emphasis on historically informed playing techniques and stylistics.

When Thur 10 March, 12pm - 2pm

Where Music Theatre, School of Music. 6 Symonds Street



MASTER CLASS: Lautten Compagney’s* Mark Nordstrand - Harpsichord

Improvising from a figured bass line – baroque basso continuo implementation. Open to all harmony wise keyboard players.

When Thur 10 March, 2pm - 4pm

Where Music Theatre, School of Music¸6 Symonds Street



WORKSHOP: Lautten Compagney’s* Peter Bauer - Percussion

Percussion for renaissance and baroque music with particular emphasis on appropriate playing techniques and rhythms. Instruments studied include framedrum, tambourine and castanets.

When Friday 11 March, 2pm - 5pm

Where Studio One, Kenneth Myers Centre, 74 Shortland Street



WORKSHOP: New Purple Forbidden City Orchestra (China)

The New Purple Forbidden City Orchestra, a 10 Member orchestra from the China Conservatory of Music (Beijing) specialises in playing contemporary music on traditional instruments.  Join this demonstration and discussion with members of the Orchestra.

When Fri 18 March, 1pm - 2pm 

Where Music Theatre, School of Music, 6 Symonds Street





Q Theatre Tours 

During Festival time, a one-off opportunity exists to get a sneak peek inside the construction site of Q Theatre, Auckland's newest performing arts venue.  Get in quick as numbers are limited.


When: 4.30 & 5.30pm

Wed 2, Wed 9, Tues 15 & Thur 17 March 

Where: 305 Queen Street 

Bookings: or (09) 309 8324.



Toi Maori: Words In Motion 

Three vocally energised M?ori performers take to the stage at venues around Auckland Central and Manukau to promote, inspire and encourage creativity in people, particularly those of M?ori and Pacific descent. Featuring poets Tarah Rudolph-Ahkiau, a member of the South Auckland Poets Collective, Troy Hunt and Luther Hunt and Indigenous Canadian author Janet Rodgers.

When Wed 2 - Fri 4 March, 2pm - 2.50pm

Where TV3 Festival Garden Stage


In association with Auckland Arts Festival and Toi Maori Aotearoa






Free Performances Sat 5, 12 & 19 March, 6pm




In conversation, Mon 14 March 12.30-1.30pm

Artist Talk, Sat 12 March, 6pm

Panel Discussion, Sat 19 March, 12pm - 2pm

Where Fresh Gallery Otara



Performance Designer and Artist Talk

When Sun 6 March, 2pm - 4pm

Where AUT Conference Centre WA224



Easy Listening Artist Talk

When 2 March, 6pm

Where Elam


Letting Space

Artists talk Shopfront,

When Tues 15 March, 7pm



Free Performance: 5 March, 7:30pm – 9pm ST PAUL St Gallery

Artist Talk 8 March, 5:30 pm AUT Lecture Theatre WE230

Workshop Fri 4 March - Sun 6 March contact ST PAUL St Gallery for details and application forms

Where ST PAUL St Gallery



Artist Talk

When Fri 4 March, 1pm

Where Two Rooms