‘Linear’ schedule for first festival
IN its first year, the Waitaki Arts Festival’s schedule will be ‘‘linear’’, its director says.
Frances McElhinney said it was expected Oamaru’s new 18day festival showcasing food, film, literature, theatre, dance, and music would evolve in the future, but unlike more established festivals, its schedule had been kept simple for its inaugural year.
At some arts festivals ‘‘there can be up to four events a day’’, Mrs McElhinney said.
‘‘[Here] there’s pretty much just one event a day — there are days where there are no events — and that’s absolutely OK.
‘‘I think what will happen, after this festival, is a call for expressions of interest, and it just gets so much more community engagement. ‘‘You just have to ‘start’ sometimes.’’
It was planned to hold the festival every two years, in years Arts Festival Dunedin, also a biennial event, was not running.
From the Waitaki Arts Festival’s opening night on Thursday, featuring The 7 Sopranos at the Oamaru Opera House, until its finale, the Art on Bikes event on October 8, the focus would be not putting up ‘‘too many barriers’’.
‘‘It’s a great way to bring the people, and the community, together,’’ Mrs McElhinney said.
Waitaki deputy mayor Melanie Tavendale applauded the festival’s celebration of local arts practitioners.
‘‘There’s so much potential to grow it and just make it a real community event,’’ Cr Tavendale said.
The Oamaru Opera House.
The Oamaru Garrison Band will open a night of local talent at the ‘‘Made in Waitaki’’ event next Thursday.