In a week’s time we will be welcoming our audiences, speakers and sponsors to Wanaka and Queenstown for the inaugural Aspiring Conversations. The feedback we have been getting and the rush of ticket sales, show that this is going to be a really popular event. And indeed our first sell out session is our opening speaker Loretta Napoleoni. She will be talking about Maonomics and why the Chinese Communists make better capitalists than we do, and also about the funding of terrorism. The Wanaka session has sold out and there are only 10 tickets left for her Queenstown session on Saturday 11th at 10am at the Rees, so don’t delay if you want to hear her fascinating session.
Also proving very popular are our technology gurus – McKinsey Institute Director James Manyika will be joined by Mary Quin and Jacques Bughin to talk about the impacts of technology on our business, on our economics and on our lives. This is very relevant here in Wanaka, where we have reached the top 5 of the national Gigatown competition run by Chorus in a bid to be get the fastest internet speed in the southern hemisphere.
You can hear Mary Quin deliver the 2014 Reeves Lecture: Dairy, Digital, and Drones here (link) first heard on Radio NZ National last week.,-digital,-and-drones
How To Run the World – Saturday 11 October 10am at the Lake Wanaka Centre book here.

And there are still some tickets left for all other sessions including Tim Finn’s solo performance of his new show ‘White Cloud’. Hear his new songs about family, about childhood and the land and see some great old family footage!. Tim plays guitar and piano in this the first show on a south island tour. Don’t miss him!
Saturday 11 October 7.30pm at Lake Wanaka Centre. Tickets $35

Change of speaker
We will be joined by Tahu Potiki on our Water Panel discussion, replacing Moana Jackson who is unable to attend. Tahu is a director of Ngai Tahu Tourism which runs the Shotover and Dart River jet boats. He is a former chief executive of Ngai Tahu and currently is the Otakou representative to Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu. He is also a director of the Institute for Environmental and Science Research and a regular columnist in The Press. He was born and raised in Karitane, a small fishing village north of Dunedin. He will join media commentator Rod Oram and former Federated Farmer president Bruce Wills to debate the issue of how we balance the competing demands on water. Who has rights to water? Are the standards of water quality set too low? Can we have it all – clean water, dairy farming and the 100% Pure brand that drives tourism?

Water Panel – Friday 10 October 6pm The Rees Hotel, Queenstown and Sunday 12 October 11.30am Lake Wanaka Centre. Tickets $15

And if you are going to all nine Wanaka sessions except Tim Finn, you can buy an Aspiring Pass for $130. We will have a handful available for sale from the box office on Friday 10 October.

Buy Tickets – book tickets online now at with no booking fee only a 3% credit card fee, or phone 022 4 TIX NOW (022 4 849 669). Tickets for Queenstown sessions can be purchased from The Rees Hotel, Frankton Road
The box office in the Lake Wanaka Centre will be open from 9am Friday 10 October for any remaining ticket sales and to collect Aspiring Passes.

And in the meantime follow us on Twitter and join the conversation on Facebook.