Easter is an occasion for everyone
Easter is a religious festival and, for thousands of people throughout New Zealand, will be a time to remember the events of the crucifixion and resurrection.
It’s a great time of year and Easter Sunday is a cause for celebration. Another cause for celebration is the City of Palmerston North Gold Cup Festival. It features the Manawatu¯ Sires’ Produce Stakes, New Zealand’s premier two-year-old race over 1400 metres.
For punters, it’s an important meeting. But it’s more than a day out at the races. It’s an opportunity for the community to come together and enjoy a wonderful summer and autumn in The Square and experience racing at its best.
The Gold Cup starts tonight in The Square with food, refreshment and activities for young and old, then moves to the Manawatu¯ Raceway with harness, greyhound and celebrity racing tomorrow night before reaching its climax at Awapuni on Saturday. As well as competitive racing there’s some competitive costuming. Fashion in the Field is almost as important as the race card and will be contested in eight classifications.
And while people are moving out at Easter, the cast and ensemble of Grease are moving in. The Manawatu¯ Theatre Society’s hit musical opens on Friday week and Easter is the time when final rehearsals in the Regent begin.
It’s 40 years since Grease, the movie, starring Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta, and MTS is presenting the Hollywood version of the ground-breaking musical. Georgia Bergerson and Taylor Ellis will make a fine Sandy and Danny and watch out for Elijah Graham as Johnny Casino.
Grease is a show for all ages. While it’s set in the 1950s, its music, themes, relationships, hairdos and what young people get up to transcend time and place.
For all of us Easter is the final extended holiday before winter. Many people will leave tomorrow night on a trip away to the beach or bach while others will enjoy time at home. It’s a family occasion.
For our theatrical, artistic community it’s a break before serious planning and rehearsals begin for a number of mid-year celebrations. The annual Manawatu¯ Jazz Festival is held over late May/early June, jazz organist Michel Benebig will give a memorable one-off performance at The Globe, AMT’s Little Shop of Horrors opens in mid May and the 20th anniversary of the beautifully restored Regent on Broadway kicks off with an event not to be missed.
Michael Houstoun and
Guests opens the festival programme with an exquisite evening of classical music while concerts by the Manawatu¯ Sinfonia, Danny and the Divas and Vivaldi’s famous Four
Seasons follow in quick succession.
Enjoy Easter and find time for a host of wonderful events to come.
Frenchy loves pink. Asa colourful character from the musical Grease Frenchy (Frankie Curd) decides to die her hair pink with the help of Spectra stylist Amelia London.