What's on in Christchurch this Week

Ali Harper stars in Songs for Nobodies.

Ali Harper stars in Songs for Nobodies.

Audience decides play's fate  

The Hagley Theatre Company are currently presenting the world premiere of a play written by one of their former students. Set in 2032, Don't Date Androids was created by Stef Alderson, who was part of the company in 1991/92. He is now a writer for Mediaworks.  A courtroom drama, it sees the audience playing members of the jury deciding each night whether Zac Thomas is guilty of murder. The show is being performed each night (except Sundays) at 7.30pm until June 23. For more information, see hagleytheatrco.co.nz

Emerging artists on display 

The Piano is currently hosting a free exhibition of emerging Canterbury artists from the Ilam School of Fine Arts. Organised by Christchurch investment banking firm Murray & Co, the annual event will be open from midday to 2pm daily until June 28. All works are for sale, with the proceeds going directly to the artists. 

Christchurch Art Show

Wigram's Air Force Museum of New Zealand will host this year's Christchurch Art Show over the next three days. Supporting new, emerging and established Kiwi artists, the annual display features hundreds of artists and thousands of works, with pieces priced from $50 to $6000. The show is open each day from 10am. For more information, see chchartshow.co.nz 

A celebration of storytelling

Out of Tune is the title of tonight's latest free Natural Born Storyteller evening at Exchange Christchurch from 7.30pm. Those headed along are invited to join in with their true-life stories, or simply just come along and listen. For more information, see storycollective.weebly.com/natural-born-storytellers.

Canterbury's best young chamber musicians

The region's eight top secondary school chamber music groups will perform in tonight's Canterbury District final of the NZCT Chamber Music Contest at The Piano. It is door sales only for the 7pm event, with tickets $10 for adults and children free.

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All hail Caesar

Julius Caesar has been transformed into a strong, independent woman in the National Academy of Singing and Dramatic Art's (NASDA) production of Shakespeare's political tale. Third-year student Danielle Rackham plays the ambitious Roman general in the show, which runs from Saturday night until June 23 at the YMCA's Papa Hou Theatre. For more information, see ara.ac.nz   


Cathedral Arts Festival  

Christchurch's first Cathedral Arts Festival kicks off on Saturday night. Centred on St Mary's Catholic Pro-Cathedral in Manchester St, the new initiative will feature a variety of concerts. The opening evening's entertainment will be provided by the CBS Choir & Orchestra, performing works by Mendelssohn and Schubert.  The patronal feast of the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament will be celebrated on Sunday with a 10.30am Solemn Mass, including John Ritchie's Missa Corpus Christi and Hymn to the Blessed Sacrament, by eminent Scottish composer Sir James MacMillan. That afternoon, the Royal School of Church Music will present their annual Music Sunday at 2pm, and the Kolbe Singers will contribute to a 5.30pm Choral Mass. On Monday and Tuesday, local secondary schools involved in The Big Sing will provide gala concerts from 7pm, while the competition's adjudicator James Tibbles will present a recital at 1.10pm on the Wednesday. That evening, the Scholar Cantorum will be in concert at 7pm, presenting a selection of Victoria's Tenebrae Responsories, followed by other motets from the16th Century and some lighter pieces by Gilbert and Sullivan. Moving forward to June 23 and organist Raymond White will be joined by soprano Rebecca Ryan for 1.10pm recital, before the latter takes up the role of guest artist in the festival's grand finale on June 23, the first performance outside Germany of a scholarly new edition of Mozart's monumental C Minor Mass.  Away from the music, an architectural panel will discuss the artistic merits of city buildings on Tuesday at 5.30pm in the Music Centre, while a church and arts panel at the same venue on Thursday at 5.30 pm will consider whether the arts can justify any place in today's church. For more information on the festival, see cathedral.org.nz

Songs for Nobodies  

Ali Harper will be holding Court once more in her new show Songs for Nobodies. Written by Joanna Murray-Smith, it sees the performer taking  audiences on a journey to meet five everyday working women whose lives were changed by a chance encounter with a star. Each of their stories is interspersed with the songs that made Judy Garland, Patsy Cline, Edith Piaf, Billie Holliday and Maria Callas worldwide musical icons. Opening on Saturday night, the show will be held on The Court Theatre's main stage until July 15. For more information and tickets, see courttheatre.org.nz

Quartet on Tour 

Actors Paul Barrett, Lyndee-Jane Rutherford, Phil Grieve and Hilary Norris have joined forces for a touring production of Roger Hall's hit comedy Four Flat Whites in Italy. Visiting 28 venues around the country, the quartet hit Christchurch's Isaac Theatre Royal on Sunday for two performances  – at 4pm and 8pm. Set in 2007, it sees retired librarians Alison and Adrian's trip of a lifetime thrown into slight chaos when their best friends pull out at the last minute. Stepping into the breach are their neighbours – wealthy plumber Harry and his new wife Judy. Book at Ticketek.

25-up for Risingholme

Twenty-five years of making "music for pleasure" will be celebrated at Risingholme Orchestra's anniversary concert on Sunday. The 2pm concert at The Piano, will include works by Wagner, Artie Shaw, Bruch and Vivaldi as well as a specially commissioned work by the orchestra's conductor and music director Dr Philip Norman. His Echoes of an Exhibition takes inspiration from a series of paintings by Canterbury artist Philip Trusttum, which in turn were inspired by a performance by local organist Martin Setchell of Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, which itself was  inspired by paintings of Russian artist and architect Victor Hartmann. For more information, see risingholmeorchestra.co.nz

Big Band, big concert

The Ellesmere Big Band will perform at Spreydon's Irish Society Hall on Sunday night. A community band based in Leeston, it specialises in swing, pop and ballad music. Doors open at 7pm for a 7.30pm start. Door sales are cash only.



NZSO return

The NZSO will perform works by Brahms, Schumann and Barber at the Isaac Theatre Royal on Wednesday night at the Issac Theatre Royal.  They will be joined by cellist Daniel Muller-Schott for the 7pm concert. Book at Ticketek.


 - Stuff


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