Monday 1 April, 6pm & 9pm, Lake Wanaka Centre
ROOMAN is a heart-warming, heart-breaking, visual-musical extravaganza by Fleur Elise Noble. Back in 2011, we presented sell-out performances of Fleur’s stunning first work, 2D Life of Her. Now enjoy her new work with its rich tapestry of puppetry, projection, drawing, dance and music

Still Life With Chickens

Friday 5 April, 6pm & 9pm, Lake Wanaka Centre
Some friendships are just clucking surprising! When Mama discovers a mischievous chicken invading her flourishing veggie garden, her first instinct is to reach for the spade. But what starts out as a skirmish over the silverbeet develops into an unlikely friendship.


Friday 5 April, 6pm, Hawea Flat Hall
Saturday 6 April, 6pm, Hawea Flat Hall
Sunday 7 April, 6pm, Hawea Flat Hall
Created by Wyatt Nixon-Lloyd and Tim Watts Performed by Daniel Buckle and Nick Pages-Oliver Produced by The Last Great Hunt A lo-fi puppetry spectacular that bends time and melts your heart. Bruce effortlessly sold out two seasons at the Edinburgh … Continued

My Best Dead Friend

Tuesday 2 April, 8.30pm, Rippon Hall
Wednesday 3 April, 8.30pm, Rippon Hall
Thursday 4 April, 8.30pm, Rippon Hall
This is a story about my best friends. Ok, no, this is actually mostly a story about me. December, 1998. Dunedin. High summer in a town where there isn’t a lot to do. This is a comedy about death, revolution, … Continued

The Road That Wasn't There

Tuesday 2 April, 6pm, Hawea Flat Hall
Wednesday 3 April, 6pm, Hawea Flat Hall
Thursday 4 April, 6pm, Hawea Flat Hall
This is a story about a girl who followed a map off the edge of the world. In New Zealand there are some 56,000 kilometres of paper roads – streets and towns that exist only on surveyors’ maps. Or do … Continued

Wild Dogs Under My Skirt

Wednesday 3 April, 6pm, Lake Wanaka Centre
Vivid, passionate and compelling, Wild Dogs Under My Skirt is also alive with humour and sheer energy. The raw and lyrical performance poetry challenges your perceptions of culture, life and love. Breathing provocative new life into Avia’s exploration and celebration … Continued

Permission to Speak

Tuesday 2 April, 6.30pm, Wanaka Yacht Club
Wednesday 3 April, 6.30pm, Wanaka Yacht Club
Thursday 4 April, 6.30pm, Wanaka Yacht Club
Friday 5 April, 6.30pm, Wanaka Yacht Club
Saturday 6 April, 6.30pm & 8.30pm, Wanaka Yacht Club
Sunday 7 April, 6.30pm & 8.30pm, Wanaka Yacht Club
It’s time to give a new generation permission to speak. High school students from around the country have spoken their truths on topics such as body image, gender equality in sport, and what feminism means to teenagers today. Their dialogues … Continued


Tuesday 2 April, 8.30pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
Singer-songwriter Jófríður Ákadóttir is the talented Icelander who emerged in 2017 as a solo artist with her project JFDR. She’s been name-checked by Björk as an inspiration - “I got obsessed with her band Samaris a few years ago and then it was amazing to see her do her own stuff”.

Bjork: All Is Full Of Love

Tuesday 2 April, 6.30pm, Lake Wanaka Centre
Blackbird Ensemble, New Zealand’s most inventive and theatrical chamber orchestra, presents an awe-inspiring homage to the inimitable Icelandic pop artist Björk.

The Maori Sidesteps

Wednesday 3 April, 8.30pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
Get ready for a night of hilarity as The Maori Sidesteps turn some of your favourite songs on their head in a mix of satirical skits and crooning goodness.

Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra

Thursday 4 April, 8.30pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
From ballads and singalongs to high-energy dance parties, Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra have spent years telling their stories with guitars and violins, with accordions and bass, with melodies and music makers gleaned from their wanderings.

One Piece At A Time

Saturday 6 April, 8.30pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
“This record has taken me somewhere else. That’s kind of the spooky element of making albums: you think you’re making them but really they’re making and shaping you.”

Lawrence Arabia's Singles Club

Sunday 7 April, 11.30am, Pacific Crystal Palace
Singer of songs, teller of tall tales, beloved entertainer par excellence – Lawrence Arabia, every bit as good as he ought to be.


Saturday 6 April, 10pm, Gin & Raspberry
She has opened for the likes of Grace Jones, John Cale and Erykah Badu. Her Electric Blue Witch-Hop electronic music has thick bass atop weighty drums, then contrasted with acoustic textures.

The Locals

Friday 5 April, 6pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
Growing up in Wanaka, these three artists all began their musical journeys as teenagers working with our lake, our mountains and our community as their backdrop.


Sunday 7 April, 8.30pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
Roll up for an evening of free-spirited music with jazz, soul and funk vocalist Lou’ana and her band.

Songs of Travel

Tuesday 2 April, 12pm, Bannockburn Hall
Wednesday 3 April, 12pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
New Zealand baritone Julien Van Mellaerts is the only person to have ever won first prize in both the Kathleen Ferrier Awards and the Wigmore Hall Kohn Foundation International Song Competition.

Central To The Soul

Sunday 7 April, 3pm, Cinema Paradiso
A Bill Morris picture of Central Otago today, through the eyes of touring artists and residents.

Wai Water Wanaka

Saturday 30 March, 10am - 5pm, Lake Wanaka Centre
We’ve got a freshwater crisis on our hands. Water in the 21st century is still seen as a bringer of life and an ancestral voice, but it’s also a contested commodity and a saleable resource, and New Zealand is starting to reach the limits of water usage.

Jordi Savall

Sunday 31 March, 12pm, Lake Wanaka Centre
For one rapturous performance only, baroque music superstar Jordi Savall brings to Wanaka the gorgeous music of late 17th century France.

New Zealand Symphony Orchestra

Sunday 7 April, 7pm, Lake Wanaka Centre
Monday 8 April, 11.30am, Lake Wanaka Centre
Our New Zealand Symphony Orchestra performs two world-class concerts for the Festival of Colour:

The Royal New Zealand Ballet

Thursday 4 April, 6pm & 9pm, Lake Wanaka Centre
Watch dancers from your national ballet company in a superb programme of contemporary works, including two that were commissioned to celebrate the 125th anniversary of women’s suffrage.

The New Zealand Dance Company - Kiss The Sky

Saturday 6 April, 7pm, Lake Wanaka Centre
Sunday 7 April, 12pm, Lake Wanaka Centre
The New Zealand Dance Company (NZDC) forges its national and international reputation for powerful contemporary dance with its tour of Kiss The Sky, including a very special work for Wanaka.

Water Crisis

Tuesday 2 April, 12pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
We’ve got a freshwater crisis on our hands. It appears we can’t have it all – clean water, high volume dairy farming, the 100% Pure brand that drives our tourism industry, along with equitable settlements of Treaty rights.

First Encounters/Te Ha: Setting Patterns For Our Nation

Thursday 4 April, 12pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
Maori living on the East Coast of New Zealand have enduring memories, handed down through generations, of the first encounters with Captain Cook 250 years ago.

Failing Public Health

Friday 5 April, 12pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
New Zealand appears to be slipping towards third world status when it comes to public health. The contamination of drinking water in Havelock North in 2016, sewage flowing through the streets of Middlemarch in 2018, the escalating obesity epidemic, our ongoing destructive relationship with alcohol – who’s looking out for our public health?

Moving To A Low Carbon Economy

Saturday 6 April, 11am, Pacific Crystal Palace
Yes, we are already feeling the effects of climate change. Yes, we need to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and shift to a low carbon economy. But what sort of economy is that?

Peace-Keeper, Peace-Maker

Saturday 6 April, 1pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
Major General Dave Gawn served two years as Head of Mission to the UN Truce Supervision Organization; since 1948, the organisation has worked between Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria.

Live Art In The Palace

Sunday 31 March, 7pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
Join two celebrated New Zealand artists for an evening of “performance art”. Dick Frizzell and Richard Adams will paint to a backdrop of live jazz played by The Gavin Adams Quartet (Nigel Gavin, Richard Adams, Jeff Sinnott and Dominic Stayne), each completing a one-off work of art to be auctioned off on the night – profits to support the Southern Lakes Arts Festival Trust.


We’re going back to school! The Festival of Colour Schoolfest programme offers free and low-cost events for primary, intermediate and secondary school students. A variety of our performers run workshops and put on special performances for students, and we provide … Continued

Tree Dancer

Monday 1 April, 8pm, Tree near Bullock Creek
Tuesday 2 April, 8pm, Tree near Bullock Creek
Wednesday 3 April, 8pm, Tree near Bullock Creek
Chloe Loftus dances at night up in the branches of a tree. Come see this enchanting outdoor performance by New Zealand’s arboreal aerialist as the spotlight picks her out. “Chloe Loftus had me absolutely spellbound as she twirled and twisted … Continued

Street Theatre

Saturday 6 April, 9am, Central Wanaka
9.30am: 3 Speed Crunch Box – extraordinary Aussie acrobats bring their circus skills to this performance out in front of Big Fig. 10am & 11am: Live:Stream – a site-specific dance piece celebrating the connection between our own rhythm and flow, … Continued

Nadia Reid

Friday 5 April, 8.30pm, Pacific Crystal Palace
Auckland-born, Dunedin-raised, she has won global success. 2017 saw her tour through Australasia, Europe, and the US including festivals like Green Man and End Of The Road, as well as media appearances on the likes of BBC’s Later... with Jools Holland.

2019 Performance Schedule