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Preview: Upbeat with Eva Radich

RNZ: Upbeat

What's going on in the world of music and the arts? From the concert hall to the cinema, we talk to musicians, composers, choreographers, dancers, actors, directors and artists - Upbeat finds out what makes them tick.


Just the Ticket?

Tue, 27 Jun 2017 13:30:00 +1200

Local event listing company Eventfinda is challenging New Zealand’s ticketing status quo and going up against American-owned Ticketmaster and Australian-owned Ticketek, announcing this week that it has won the ticketing contracts for two of Auckland’s venues. Kiwi tech entrepreneur and Eventfinda co-founder James McGlinn tells Eva Radich about the move and what it means for consumers.

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La La Land the film…in concert!

Tue, 27 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

The Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra will be among the world’s first orchestras to present a one-of-a-kind live concert experience performing the soundtrack from La La Land alongside a full screening of the film later this year.  The orchestral film deal is one of the first put together by the APO's new Head of Operations Paul Christ who has a mixed background in commercial shows and more traditional orchestral work. Eva Radich talks to him to find out what new opportunities these types of international concerts offer the orchestra.

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STROMA create taonga puoro fusion for Matariki

Mon, 26 Jun 2017 13:30:00 +1200

The renaissance of taonga puoro - traditional Māori musical instruments - continues to build, with a major collaboration between leading chamber ensemble STROMA and two of Aotearoa's top performers of taonga puoro, Ariana Tikao and Alistair Fraser at Hannah Playhouse this week. The concert Tātai Whetū ("the constellations") features a number of taonga puoro, including Ariana's specially crafted pahu pounamu - a pounamu 'gong'. Ariana and Stroma Music Director Michael Norris talk about the unique collaboration fusing Māori and Western musical instruments to tell the stories behind the constellations.

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Kiss the Sky

Mon, 26 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

The New Zealand Dance Company's Kiss the Sky will showcase works by three exceptional international choreographers from Aotearoa, Korea and Australia on the theme of the seasons, the southern sky and time, presented to coincide with the Matariki Festival.

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New Zealand Brass Takes On The World

Fri, 23 Jun 2017 13:20:00 +1200

The 2017 National Band of New Zealand is preparing for battle: it’s competing in the World Championships in the Netherlands as part of an international tour. Selected by national audition and playing together only intermittently, Music Director Nigel Weeks is tasked with turning the 36 players into a cohesive entity able to represent their country on the world stage.  

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A Musical Tour of the British Isles for the Lions

Fri, 23 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

Kiwi mezzo soprano Helen Medlyn, celebrates the Lions Tour, with the NZSO’s Lands of Hope and Glory concert in Wellington on Friday 30th June. Kicking off their British Season, Helen will MC the concert featuring some of the best-loved music from the participating nations in the tour. Proms favs like Elgar’s Pomp and Circumstance,  Peter Maxwell Davies’ An Orkney Wedding, with Sunrise – complete with solo bagpiper -  and a  medley of classic folk songs including Ireland’s Danny Boy and Molly Malone, Scotland’s My Bonnie, England’s Scarborough Fair, Wales’ All Through the Night …and Pokarekare Ana in there for the home crowd.  

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Colourful cacophony for Christchurch Arts Festival

Thu, 22 Jun 2017 13:40:00 +1200

A colourful cacophony of shows, plays and performances have been announced in the line-up for the upcoming Christchurch Arts Festival. Leading the pack is the effervescent true love story of Hudson and Halls at the Court Theatre. Festival Director Craig Cooper takes us through 50 events through three weeks of culture from dance and music to a discotheque circus.

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Brits take over Auckland

Thu, 22 Jun 2017 13:20:00 +1200

The British and Irish Lions fans are invading Auckland and to celebrate, all the old favourite tunes are being performed for the Last Night of the Proms. Getting in the spirit is the Auckland Symphony Orchestra, conductor Peter Thomas and mezzo Sarah Court, among others. They’ll encourage you to sing along to all the much loved classics with a few New Zealand songs included.

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Adding to the Contemporary Art landscape

Thu, 22 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

Sandra Grant and her husband Anthony have spent the last 12 years developing a place for the beautiful, the interesting and the odd. Sculptureum is 25 acres of art and sculpture filled gardens, galleries, vineyards, animals and food. Sandra explains her love of collecting art, reveals her most treasured pieces and describes how the park grew from an idea to an actuality.

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Finding humour in the ridiculous

Wed, 21 Jun 2017 13:30:00 +1200

Comedian James Nokise likes to find humour in the ridiculous. His latest show Rukahu follows fictional character Jon Bon Fasi, who’s been given a $75,000 grant from CNZ to create a new show. But what really happens as the opening night draws closer?  The award winning performer talks politics, culture and comedy.

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West Side Story music keeps the fire alive

Wed, 21 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

Donald Chan has conducted more than 3000 performances of West Side Story. You’d think after so many repetitions the novelty would wear off. But the music keeps the spark alive for the Music Director who is in New Zealand for the official 60th anniversary world tour of the musical.  He discusses his love of the modernised Romeo and Juliet story; working with some of the biggest names in the biz, and what it was like learning from Leonard Bernstein.

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Composer Charles Royal: 'What's bubbling away inside of you?'

Tue, 20 Jun 2017 13:20:00 +1200

Musicians are always looking for their own voice, says Charles Te Ahukaramū Royal – and it took connecting with his Māori identity to find his.

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There Will Be Blood

Tue, 20 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

That’s the tag line for Carrie the Musical, opening in Wellington – there will be blood and director Ben Emerson promises a lot of it. So much so there’s an audience “splash zone”. The famous Stephen King novel turned cult-hit film tells the story of Carrie, an awkward, repressed teenager with telekinetic powers who causes havoc on the school prom after she is humiliated by her peers. Audiences will see all its bloody mayhem at Bats Theatre.

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REVIEW: NZSO Schumann & Barber

Mon, 19 Jun 2017 13:20:00 +1200

The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and endearing German cellist Daniel Müller-Schott gave a “gorgeous” performance of Schumann’s Cello Concerto at the Michael Fowler Centre on Saturday according to reviewer Peter Meechan. But how did the rest of the unconventional programme with music by Brahms and Samuel Barber measure up?

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Maori and French flavours head to Edinburgh

Mon, 19 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

The whimsical story of a lonely, reclusive pianist who finds friendship with the moon and a life-sized puppet is the crux of La Vie Dans Une Marionette. The innovative theatre work has been created by Auckland company White Face Crew members Tama Jarman, Justin Haiu with Jarrod Rawiri. It combines physical theatre, clowning, and dance. The piece is being supported by Creative New Zealand to perform at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

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The ballet gets a new home

Sun, 18 Jun 2017 12:16:00 +1200

It's been described as a win-win - the Wellington City Council's multi million dollar investment in Wellington's Te Whaea Dance and Drama studios to accommodate the Royal New Zealand Ballet Company. It's good news for the Capital itself, longer term, with more top quality dance studios available not just to the New Zealand School of Dance but to the community as a whole. The Royal Ballet has to move out of its base for the past 20 years so the historic but earthquake-damaged St James Theatre can be strengthened. Lynn Freeman talks to Frances Turner, Executive Director of the RNZB, and to Garry Trinder, Director of the New Zealand School of Dance, and asks why it's taken so long to find a temporary home for the company:

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Keys and Colours - G is the Key!

Fri, 16 Jun 2017 13:30:00 +1200

Dunedin duo, cellist Heleen du Plessis and pianist Terence Dennis repeat their popular recital series exploring the sound colours and moods associated with key signatures. This time it's the key of G. The pair bring out all the colour and passion from both cello and piano in works by Bach, Beethoven and Ravel.

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Nonagenarian trumpeters still blowing strong

Fri, 16 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

Many of us give up our passions as we get old, but not 98 year old Mel Smith and 95 year old Doug Kelly. The trumpeters are part of the brass section of Christchurch's Risingholme Orchestra and will be showing off their skills at this weekend's 25 Jubilee concert. They chat to Zoë George about the secret to longevity, a lifelong love of music and their advice to those who are considering taking up an instrument later in life.

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Crayford wins 2017 Jazz Album of the year

Thu, 15 Jun 2017 13:35:00 +1200

The Recorded Music NZ Best Jazz Album award was claimed by Jonathan Crayford, for his seven-track East West Moon at the New Zealand Jazz Awards on Sunday night in Wellington. He talks to Zoe George about winning the award, the inspiration behind it, and what jazz really means to him.

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Hamlet: The Video Game

Thu, 15 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

Video games and Shakespearean text don’t often go together, but Hamlet: The Video Game stage show at the Court Theatre brings the story into today. It combines nerf guns, confetti blood and Angry Birds with a reloaded Hamlet which brings a comedic and audience-interactive performance to life.

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Festival marks longest nights

Wed, 14 Jun 2017 13:30:00 +1200

  The winter solstice is fast approaching and it’s being celebrated with a mix of food, films festivities and a fiery waterfront procession. Andrew Laking and Simon Christie from Lōemis festival, which is in its second year, explain Neolithic traditions and the importance music plays within them.

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Bold cellist Daniel Müller-Schott returns

Wed, 14 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

He’s been described by The New York Times as being “bold” and that is what New Zealand audiences should expect when German cellist Daniel Müller-Schott takes the stage for a five date nationwide tour from tomorrow.  The star cellist toured with the NZSO four years ago and returns to play the music that first made him want to play cello: Schumann’s Cello Concerto with the NZSO and guest director James Feddeck.

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Striking the right balance at The Big Sing

Tue, 13 Jun 2017 13:20:00 +1200

A record 273 choirs from our secondary schools are taking part in The Big Sing festival, and it's up to the adjudicators to ensure every choir has a fair chance of progressing through to the finals. James Tibbles oversees the Regional Festivals in Canterbury/West Coast and Nelson/Marlborough, a challenging job to say the least.

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Moving to the Pacific Groove

Tue, 13 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

Original dance works celebrating Maori and Pacific culture are on show in the capital this week as part of the Kia Mau and Pacific Dance festivals. Choreographer and Artistic Director Tupe Lualua specialises in Pacific Contemporary Dance and theatre. She explains its place in arts and culture in New Zealand and how her two works, one about a burlesque parlour and the other addressing men's roles in Samoan society, fit into the wider conversation.

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Back-to-back jazz awards for Allardice

Mon, 12 Jun 2017 13:45:00 +1200

Jonathan Crayford and Callum Allardice are the big winners at the 2017 Jazz Music Awards in Wellington.

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How to look at nudes

Mon, 12 Jun 2017 13:30:00 +1200

There’s a lot of naked bodies at the Auckland Art Gallery as part of The Body Laid Bare: Masterpieces from the Tate. But how do you look at and appreciate a nude? Associate Professor Linda Tyler discusses how to critically look at nudes including eroticism in art, the representation of the body from the 19th century until modern day and is there a difference between the terms “naked” and “nude”?

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Michael Hill International Violin Competition winner Ioana Cristina Goicea

Mon, 12 Jun 2017 13:20:00 +1200

Ioana Cristina Goicea from Romania clinched the 2017 Michael Hill International Violin Competition in Auckland on Saturday night performing the striking Tchaikovsky.

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REVIEW: Michael Hill International Violin Competition

Mon, 12 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

Three highly talented young violinists took the stage at the Auckland Town Hall to compete for the top prize at the Michael Hill International Violin Competition. Peter Hoar was in the crowd listening to the performances by Ioana Cristina Goicea from Romania, Luke Hsu from the United States and New Zealander Benjamin Baker.

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Modern telling of Matariki

Fri, 09 Jun 2017 13:50:00 +1200

It’s Matariki.  Kura Te Ua, co-founder of Maori kapa haka theatre group Hawaiki TU and actor Rawiri Paratene discuss the importance of telling ancient stories in a modern way through Te Manawa which combines kapa haka, Maori movement, contemporary theatre, storytelling and music.

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REVIEW: Wellington Jazz Festival - Bill Frisell

Fri, 09 Jun 2017 13:35:00 +1200

Bill Frisell is regarded as one of the most innovative and influential jazz guitarists of the last 25 years. He has collaborated with leading musicians across genre, from classical artists like Renee Fleming to pop stars Elvis Costello and Brian Eno. Norman Meehan reviews Frisell’s performance at the Opera House from the opening night of the Wellington Jazz Festival.

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Michael Hill International Violin Competition finalists named

Fri, 09 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

New Zealander Benjamin Baker is a finalist for the Michael Hill International Violin Competition, along with Ioana Cristina Goicea of Romania and Luke Hsu from USA. In the final on Saturday each will play a concerto with the APO conducted by Giordano Bellincampi. He discusses the the psychology he uses to empower soloists; APO concert master Andrew Beer reveals the emotional toll performance takes on musicians and international juror Dong Suk Kang says why competitions are important.

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Award winning comedy comes to Auckland

Thu, 08 Jun 2017 13:45:00 +1200

The rollicking story about orange seller turned actress and King Charles’ lover Nell Gwyn comes to the Waterfront Theatre in Auckland in August. Winner of the 2016 Olivier Award for Best New Comedy, the kiwi incarnation stars Claire Chitham and is directed by Colin McColl. He explains how he’ll be bringing the Royal Court to Auckland.

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Michael Hill International Violin Competition Semi Finals

Thu, 08 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

The semi-finals of the Michael Hill Violin Competition are underway in Auckland. Last night featured three of the semi-finalists, while the other three, including New Zealander Benjamin Baker, perform tonight. He, along with Executive director Anne Rodda and judge Vesa-Matti Leppanen discuss the competition.

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Tilting the Axis

Wed, 07 Jun 2017 13:40:00 +1200

Axis, Anatomy of Space is Art Laureate Daniel Belton's new film work, which explores the depths of space through a sensory experience. It's on display as part of the Matariki Festival, making its Auckland debut later this month at the Stardome Observatory and Planetarium. It's a fully immersive 360 degree dome cinema journey, showcasing dancers from the Royal New Zealand Ballet and contemporary choral works by Singaporeans Joyce Beetuan Koh and PerMagnus Lindborg.

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Blowing his trumpet at Jazz Fest

Wed, 07 Jun 2017 13:15:00 +1200

Trumpeter Lex French is back home from Montreal where he's been based the last few years to play with the Jac at this week's Wellington Jazz Festival. He's also leading a performance of Miles Davis' 1969 album In a Silent Way with full band at the Rogue and Vagabond on Friday night. He talks about his new album Prevent the Future.

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Why virtual reality is important for the survival of classical music

Tue, 06 Jun 2017 13:40:00 +1200

London’s Philharmonia Orchestra has developed a new PlayStation app that allows users to experience what it's like to sit in the middle of the orchestra surrounded by talented players.

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Young pianist part of mix for Bach Musica 40th

Tue, 06 Jun 2017 13:20:00 +1200

Emerging pianist Bradley Wood is just one of the group of young talent helping celebrate Bach Musica’s 40th anniversary year; Bradley will play Beethoven’s Third Piano Concert at the Auckland Town Hall this weekend. The Auckland University graduate has also just been awarded a Patricia Pratt Scholarship which will help fund his studies at the Royal College of Music in London later in the year.

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Donations flowing in for Wellington's new music hub

Tue, 06 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

$4.5 million dollars has already been donated to transform Wellington's Town Hall into a music hub available for public use.

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Review: Star violinist Ilya Gringolts begins his New Zealand tour

Fri, 02 Jun 2017 13:40:00 +1200

Russian violinist Ilya Gringolts joined the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and conductor Giordano Bellincampi for Mountain King. Peter Hoar reviews the concert which featured Nielsen Symphony No.3, Grieg’s Peer Gynt: Suite and Gringolts playing Brahms’ Violin Concerto.  

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Local collaboration for Jazz Festival

Fri, 02 Jun 2017 13:25:00 +1200

Wellington based pianist and composer Mark Donlon and New York  trumpeter Alex Sipiagin are collaborating for two concerts for the upcoming Wellington Jazz Festival. Their partnership has also resulted in a new album, Between Moons, which in part is a tribute to Canadian trumpeter Kenny Wheeler, and Mark’s former teacher the British pianist John Taylor. Sipiagin has already started his New Zealand concerts as part of Rodger Fox’s Jazz Gala tour of the country.  

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Review: New Zealand Opera’s Carmen

Fri, 02 Jun 2017 13:00:00 +1200

The billboards say “if you haven’t seen Carmen, it’s a tragedy”. New Zealand Opera’s Carmen opened last night in Wellington. Christine Argyle reviews this production of Bizet’s opera directed by Lindy Hume and featuring Nino Surguladze in the title role.

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Michael Hill Violin Competition – A judge’s perspective

Thu, 01 Jun 2017 13:45:00 +1200

Enjoy the opportunity. That’s the advice for the competitors in the 2017 Michael Hill International Violin Competition. The competition starts this weekend in Queenstown before heading to Auckland. Russian born violinist Ilya Gringolts has some sage words for those who will be standing in front of him and the other judges in the coming days.

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Santana vocalist joins Jazz Festival

Wed, 31 May 2017 13:30:00 +1200

Santana vocalist Tony Lindsay is touring NZ with Rodger Fox Big Band. The 11 time Grammy award winner has toured the world extensively with Santana, and recorded seven albums with the band, as well as recordings under his own name. The tenor talks about working with the legendary guitarist, writing songs for others, and the importance of supporting local music.

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Carmen’s dynamic design

Wed, 31 May 2017 13:00:00 +1200

New Zealand Opera’s Carmen opening this week is the result of a director/designer partnership going back 25 years. Lindy Hume and Dan Potra made their names in the opera world with their “breakthrough” production of Bizet’s popular opera in Perth and the production is still going strong today. Dan Potra discusses the longevity of his designs, how they travel the globe, and creating a new design for Dracula.

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Master Masaaki Suzuki and Juilliard 415

Tue, 30 May 2017 13:30:00 +1200

Masaaki Suzuki is renowned for his performances and recordings of Bach with his group Bach Collegium Japan. New York's Juilliard School is among the world's leading and prestigious performing arts conservatories. Team the highly accomplished 19-piece Juilliard415 with Bach- meister Masaaki Suzuki and audiences can expect fireworks.

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Nineteenth century love fest hits capital

Tue, 30 May 2017 13:00:00 +1200

Actors Peter Hambleton and Bronwyn Turei star in the New Zealand premiere of film writer Patrick Marber’s Three Days in the Country, based on Russian writer Ivan Turgenev’s classic A Month in the Country. Marber speeds up the action and gives a large team of actors the chance to explore a nineteenth century love fest in sumptuous fashion.

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