The Auckland Arts Festival kicked off today for 19 days of theatre, music, cabaret, dance, and art.
As well as the many high quality productions on during the festival (check the website for details) there are many FREE events and things to see.
Aotea Square is the heart of the festival. Visitors from Queen Street are welcomed by the Heart of the City gates.
In the centre of Aotea Square is the Paradiso Spiegeltent. A Spiegeltent is a large travelling tent that is constructed from wood and canvas and decorated with mirrors and stained glass. The word Spiegel is Dutch for mirror. Even if you are not seeing a show in Speigeltent’s Festival Club it is still worth taking the time to stop and admire its exterior.
Also in Square is the TimeOut Festival Garden, which is a space for all to enjoy. The iHeartRadio Sound Lounge promises to pumping out a mixture of live jazz, indie-pop, classical, soul, funk and New Orleans street music throughout the festival.
In the Garden is the Big Screen, which will be displaying digital art. The highlight of the programme will be Lisa Reihana’s Tai Whetuki: House of Death, which will be playing most evenings.
Also in the Square is a stunning art installation by Niki Hastings-McFall entitled Fale Ula. Hastings-McFall has wrapped tree trunks in Aotea Square with synthetic lei (ula). The trees are lit up at night so it is worth checking it day or night.
Further a field in Daldy Street Park is Field, an outdoor installation by Angus Muir and Alexandra Heaney. It is a grid of mirrored pillars that is ever changing depending on the light and audience around it.
Also coming up on Saturday 14th March is White Night. From 6pm till Midnight visitors can see various creative installations across 100 venues and location all over Auckland. There will be free White Night buses linking the participating neighbourhoods.
Auckland Arts Festival runs 4th to 22nd March 2015.