Musician among medallists

KERRY MCBRIDE
Last updated 05:00 07/09/2012
Sir Jerry Mateparae

SPECIAL KIWIS: Al Brown helps Governor-General Sir Jerry Mateparae pin on the chef’s MNZM.

Bret McKenzie
ROSS GIBLIN/Fairfax NZ
MUPPET MEDAL: Bret McKenzie received the ONZM at an investitures ceremony at Government House. The ceremony’s ‘‘more intimate than the Oscars’’, he said.

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More Muppet musicality could be on the way from Bret McKenzie, after he hinted at working with Kermit the Frog again following an investiture ceremony yesterday.

McKenzie was at Government House receiving a Queen's Service Order medal when he said another Muppet film could be on the table. "I am currently in negotiations with Kermit the Frog to maybe do another Muppet movie."

He said the green amphibian was "hard to get on the phone", and Miss Piggy had "nothing to do with the contracts".

McKenzie won an Academy Award for his song Man or Muppet in last year's The Muppets, and won a Grammy in 2007 with bandmate Jemaine Clement for their Flight of the Conchords album The Distant Future.

It was a wonderful feeling to be recognised at the yesterday's investiture ceremony among so many incredible people, he said.

"All of those people have given so much to the community, so it's very humbling to be recognised next to a guy who is trying to cure cancer."

Receiving his medal was a special moment because he was the third generation in his family to receive one.

The ceremony was a lot more personal than his trip to the Oscars, he said. "It's more intimate than the Oscars. They are both very different. It is much more personal and much more New Zealand, or Kiwi."

Sir Roderick Deane also received his knighthood at the ceremony, for his services to business and the community, while KiwiRail chairman John Spencer and chef Al Brown were honoured for their services to their industries.

But Brown's medal gave Governor-General Sir Jerry Mateparae some grief during the ceremony, prompting the well-known restaurateur to offer Sir Jerry a loan of his glasses to help pin it on.

"Those little pins can cause trouble at the best of times, but I think he was having trouble seeing," Brown said. "At least it gave everyone a bit of a chuckle."

Being in the room with people who had achieved so much was a complete honour.

"These people have done so much in so many different ways, so it's so nice to feel like you really are part of the fabric of New Zealand."

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- The Dominion Post

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