* With plans being laid for the Christ Church Cathedral Choir's tour of Britain, the hard work of raising funds, so the choir can sing in 10 British cathedrals, including Westminster Abbey, are under way.
Tomorrow at 7.30pm, a fundraising Valentine's Day concert in the cathedral will combine sight and sound as a group of Canterbury singers and performers join in Appassionata. The artists include Dame Malvina Major, Fiona Pears, composer and musician Hamish Oliver, singer Ballantyne Haines and the cathedral choristers with their musical director, Brian Law.
Fabric artist, Jenny Gillies, has created the evening's finale, launching her own four-day event in the cathedral (February 15 to 19). Tickets are available at the cathedral's shop and website, or at Ballantynes.
* The Waikuku Artist's Incorporated fourth annual exhibition opens this week at the Waikuku Beach Community Hall. Since it was first held, the event has become a fixture in Canterbury's cultural calendar. The 2008 show will be opened tomorrow with 23 professional and emerging artists exhibiting paintings, sculpture, photography, jewellery and textiles. John Coley, artist, former Waikuku resident and a founding member of the WAI, is guest artist and guest speaker.
The exhibition is open to the public from 10am to 6pm, February 16 and 17.
* With an estimated 500 dance groups in Christchurch and 200 in Dunedin, the South Island is kicking up its heels. With this in mind, the Dance and Physical Theatre Trust (Dapht) is planning to hold a regional dance hui in May to launch an online database for teachers and dancers in Dunedin and Christchurch.
Dapht is creating the website which will be launched at the regional dance hui on May 2 to 4 at the Campbell Park Estate, Duntroon.
"By bringing together the dance communities of Dunedin and Christchurch, we hope to offer an opportunity to discuss key issues regarding the development of dance in the South Island, to create a plan facilitating ways forward, and devise a strategy on how best to achieve our goals," a spokesperson said.
"We would like this hui to celebrate the strength of dance in the South Island. By offering a chance to network and plan together, we hope that by the end of the weekend we can collectively look to the future with a positive outlook and a shared set of goals."
About 100 places are available for the hui. For details contact: Nicola Muir, South Island Dance Network, Christchurch office. Phone (03) 366-7709 or email: nicola@thebody. co.nz
* Be afraid. Be very afraid. Halloween may be some months away but scary things are already afoot in the Christchurch Botanic Gardens as it prepares for six late-night theatrical performances this month.
The Deadly Night Show (February 21 to 23 and February 28 to March 1) will celebrate the Festival of Flowers. Twice a night, at 10pm and midnight – The Deadly Night Show will weave its dark magic, the first time the Botanic Gardens have remained open this late.
A cemetery will be constructed in the Gardens to accommodate the 40 different species of poisonous plants around which the play is set. The 60-minute event introduces Doctor Nightshade (Kristian Lavercombe), Belladonna (Skye Broberg) and Dwale (Pascal Ackermann) in a plot about poison, murder and mysterious death. Even the play's props carry echoes of the macabre, including a coffin and an 1881 organ.
Entertaining for adults and children over 12 years, the performance is the first of its kind to be performed in Christchurch. Tickets available from council service centres, the Botanic Gardens Information Centre, or phone (03) 941-8888.
* John Maillard is a photographer who specialises in landscapes and people – themes which have taken him on assignment throughout the world. Currently based in Christchurch, Maillard originally lived in Britain where he exhibited for more than 20 years.
For the past five years, Maillard has focused his attention and lenses on New Zealand landscapes, assembling a body of work for his second book, which is to be published in late 2008.
Maillard characterises his work as "a synthesis that simultaneously honours both traditional photographic values and modern technological capabilities".
While his images are captured digitally, they are finished with minimal post- production that owes much to traditional darkroom methods such as dodging, burning, colour control and contrast.
Maillard's new exhibition, Paths, opened at the COCA earlier this month.
"We follow metaphysical paths, each path is a metaphor for time or experience," he writes.
Paths runs until February 24. Maillard will give a free public lecture at COCA, 12.30pm, next Wednesday, February 20. –Christopher Moore
- The Press
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