About Us

The Festival of Colour is the flagship arts event for the region. With nine successful festivals under our belt, we are still fresh and stylish and punch well above our weight.  We have established our track record with sell-out seasons of music, theatre and dance performances and deservedly known as the ‘best little arts festival in New Zealand’.

2023 – Festival number TEN!

We always aim for a programme that is rich and diverse – with something to excite, engage and entertain our audiences. The next Festival of Colour will take place March 26 to April 2, 2023.

The Festival of Colour and Aspiring Conversations are organised by the Southern Lakes Arts Festival Trust, registered Charitable Trust CC27353.

The Festival Team

Prue Wallis (Patron)
The late Fiona Rowley (Patron Settlor)


Alistair King (Chair)

Mike Toepfer (Deputy Chair)
Penny Deans
Jo McGregor
Fiona McPhee
Trevor Crawford
Annis Somerville
Nicola King
Mark Verbiest
Annabel Wilson 

Trust Advisors

Dennis Schwarz (Technical) 


Sophie Kelly– Festival Director

Charlie Unwin – Executive Director
Philip Tremewan – Aspiring Conversations Programmer
Anna McConville & Abbey Lewis – Operations Managers
Katy Macpherson – Ticketing Manager