Wishing you a happy first week of Level 3 from the team at the Festival of Colour and Aspiring Conversations. We hope you are enjoying moving down a level, and the chance to support our local businesses by picking up a coffee, or a takeaway meal or loading up a few supplies to finish off your lockdown DIY projects.We’re still working from home, with the festival nerve centre currently located on our General Manager’s kitchen table, squeezed between the saltshaker and yesterday’s dishes – something many of you will find familiar in these unusual times.

Planning is in full swing for the 2021 Festival of Colour arts festival. Mark April 12-18, 2021 in your calendars as a time when we can once again come together as a community to share the best of arts and ideas.

In the meantime, if you would like to get in touch, please email GM Laura Williamson on laura@festivalofcolour.co.nz, as our office phone is still un-manned.

Dr Ranjana Srivastava and Glenn Colquhoun.

Aspiring Conversations speakers online

Several of our Aspiring Conversations speakers have been very busy during the COVID-19 lockdown period.

You may have read a lot about scientist Shaun Hendy over the past few weeks. He was on the speaker lineup for our ‘A Careful Revolution’ session, and has been part of the team modelling the spread of Covid-19 in New Zealand. You can follow him on Twitter at @hendysh.

Let’s talk bubbles, by Toby Morris.

And the collaborations between microbiologist Dr Siouxsie Wiles, who spoke at our 2017 Aspiring Conversations, and illustrator Toby Morris, have gone viral around the world for their clear and engaging approach to explaining COVID-19 and the Government’s response.

Here’s some thought-provoking reading from a few more of our Aspiring Conversations speakers.

Journalism lecturer Mel Bunce on the fragile state of local media:

It is a dark week for journalism in New Zealand, with the surprise announcement that Bauer Media will close its magazine stable that includes the Listener, North & South and Metro. The news is a huge blow for the talented journalists at these magazines – and a massive loss for New Zealand’s public sphere.

READ MORE: https://thespinoff.co.nz/media/03-04-2020/these-are-crisis-times-for-nz-journalism-in-more-ways-than-one/

Dr Ranjana Srivastava writes about an Australian doctor’s first day treating Covid-19 patients:

A mother’s heart harbours, in equal measure, dread and love. “Can’t you take sick leave?” mine suggests before realising the answer for herself. I have just shown her a text message from a colleague. “The Covid round is arduous, take good care.”

READ MORE: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/apr/29/patient-tears-and-staying-calm-a-day-in-the-life-of-an-australian-doctor-treating-covid-19-patients?CMP=share_btn_link

The Lockdown Letters on The Spinoff, including contributions from poet/doctor Glenn Colquhoun and writer Fiona Farrell:
The surf sounded like Eden Park on the end of a try. The gulls were diving. Laughing. Giving us the finger.

READ MORE: https://thespinoff.co.nz/books/14-04-2020/lockdown-letters-19-glenn-colquhoun-jesus-pokes-a-dead-stingray-with-a-stick/

And past speakers have stepped into the limelight, including Professor David Skegg who told us more than a year ago of the gaps in public health care, as well as Climate Change Minister James Shaw and Dame Anne Salmond who have both called for major changes as we rebuild the economy.

Finally, a speaker who Philip has long been keen to bring to Wanaka is Cambridge professor of politics David Runciman.  You may enjoy the interviews on his weekly podcast. And he’s just done a fine introductory series to some of the most important thinkers behind modern politics. Listen here: https://www.talkingpoliticspodcast.com/history-of-ideas

Under cover with two fine musicians

If you enjoyed Finn Andrews’ ‘One Piece at a Time’ show at last Festival of Colour, then you’ll like his chat and virtual jam with fellow New Zealand musician Marlon Williams.

WATCH Under Cover with Marlon Williams and Finn Andrews HERE.


LoveWanaka – Supporting Local

Lake Wanaka Tourism’s ‘LoveWanaka – Supporting Local’ campaign kicks off today! LWT and Ignite Wanaka have partnered on this initiative, which is all about promoting a ‘go local’ approach in Levels 3, 2 and 1.

They’ve put together a fantastic online resource full of everything your can do, buy and eat in Wanaka right now, including where to get a coffee, how to mountain bike under the COVID restrictions, and where to get online treatments like physiotherapy and hearing tests.

It’s all HERE on the LoveWanaka site.


Be thankful for art

The arts sector has been hit hard by COVID-19 restrictions, and yet, as our online consumption of music, theatre, dance, film and literature has shown during lockdown, we need art now more than ever.

Creative New Zealand has launched a campaign to promote the value of the arts and artists in our communities.

You can support the New Zealand artists you love by sharing their work through your social media channels and using the hashtag #TFA.

From the team at CNZ:

“It might be a great book, a funny comic, a brilliant film, a toe-tapping dance track, your favourite painting or photograph. It could be the kids playing the piano, the tivaevae created by your grandmother, the kōwhaiwhai pattern that speaks to your whakapapa, a newly felted bunny, or any art or artist you are thankful for.

“We know New Zealanders value the arts. By using #TFA you are showing the art you’re thankful for and that you support New Zealand art and artists.”

From our libraries: Calling all poets!

Queenstown Lakes District Libraries is putting together an online poetry project. They are currently looking for audio/video recordings of poems, poems or scripts that could be read online by Drama students, and facilitators for online writing workshops

If you’re interested in getting involved by presenting your work, or running an online workshop, please get in touch with Lauren from Frankton Library on Lauren.Webster@qldc.govt.nz.

The Wānaka Museum

A group of Wānaka locals have started work on a proposed Wānaka Museum – they are in the process of gathering content and ideas. You can submit through their at www.wanakamuseum.co.nz or email thewanakamuseum@gmail.com.