Fes­ti­val for all want­ing to be in it

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By JIM CHIPP

Over three decades Mary Pritchard’s en­ergy has pro­pelled Art­splash from a small com­mu­nity event into a re­gion-wide event.

Pritchard was part of the Wellington City Coun­cil com­mu­nity arts team that or­gan­ised the first Art­splash 27 years ago, run in Ori­en­tal Bay’s band ro­tunda.

This year’s 10,000 per­form­ers filled both the Opera House for the drama sec­tion and the Michael Fowler Cen­tre for the mu­sic, dance, wear­able and visual arts sec­tions over a two- week pe­riod.

The young singers got a chance to per­form along­side pro­fes­sional mu­si­cians.

Wellington band Su­per­model per­formed with the chil­dren, us­ing footage from one show as part of the video for their lat­est sin­gle, Fly by Night.

The Wellington

Youth Sin­foni­etta Orches­tra and Chilton St James Amadeus Orches­tra ac­com­pa­nied the massed choirs over three nights, along­side pro­fes­sional mu­si­cians mak­ing up the Art­splash Band.

‘‘I am very pas­sion­ate that this is an amaz­ing op­por­tu­nity for th­ese kids to get a taste and feel for what’s avail­able to them out there,’’ Pritchard said.

‘‘That’s what I’m about – giv­ing them the op­por­tu­nity and open­ing their eyes to what is avail­able.’’

Among the pri­mary school tal­ent Pritchard has seen on the Art­splash stage over the years has been tenor Ben Mak­isi and so­prano Bianca An­drews, who will soon travel to London to be­gin her study at the Guild­hall School of Mu­sic and Drama.

Although there were many events for sec­ondary age pupils there were few op­por­tu­ni­ties at pri­mary and in­ter­me­di­ate age, she said.

Art­splash was unique in cov­er­ing all the arts, Pritchard said. ‘‘The great thing about this fes­ti­val is that it brings kids from the Wellington area to­gether stand­ing side by side.’’

Art­splash had such a pro­file be­cause it was in­clu­sive. ‘‘If you want to be in it, you’re in it.’’

Pho­tos: JIM CHIPP

Sweet har­monies: Sina Mn­gomezulu at Art­splash. She is in year 6 at Porirua East School.

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