The best of Auckland this week: Celebrate Wynyard Quarter turning 8, watch Filipino-Kiwi play Pinay, and more
A weekly round-up of what’s on in Auckland so you can plan your weekend and the week ahead.
Neil Young’s Live Rust | 40th Anniversary Tour
It’s been 40 years since Neil Young released Live Rust, so a bunch of New Zealand musicians are getting together in celebration: Liam Finn, Jon Toogood, SJD, Delaney Davidson and more. Split into two sets, they’ll be playing an anthology of classics followed by a back-to-back track replica of Live Rust. Neil Young himself will not be performing.
Friday 9 August | The Civic
The main part of NZIFF might be over, but don’t miss the animation festival, a collection of the best of the best animated shorts from across the globe. Bundled up into six different showcases, choose from themes like Handmade and Dark Hearts.
Friday 9-Sunday 11 August | Academy Cinemas
Wynyard Quarter’s 8th Birthday
Bring the family together for an action-packed day on the waterfront, running from 7.30am to 5.30pm. You could get stuck in at the Daldy Street Community Gardens with biology-first gardening activations, scrawl on the street with chalk, spot majestic Stilt Creatures or enjoy a movie at Silo Park. Click here for the full run-down.
Saturday 10 August | Wynyard Quarter
An Orchestral Rendition of Dr Dre: 2001
After getting caught out two weeks ago for including the fake Dane Rumble gig in Auckland (who I’m told is happily making jewellery somewhere or something) I am extremely hesitant to post this, lest it be a hoax. This one seems to be a worldwide, global show, though, so I think I’m OK. A full orchestra will be performing Dr Dre’s all-time hits with some accompanying high-end visuals. Dr Dre himself will not be performing.
Saturday 10 August | The Studio
Pinay is the first play developed through Fresh Off the Page monthly page-readings, and is directed by Filipino comedian James Roque and written and starring Marianne Infante. Pinay brings together stories of an immigrant family and their assimilated daughter, investigating the collision of Filipino and Kiwi culture.
Begins Tuesday 13 August | Basement Theatre
Queer Scenes: God’s Own Country
God’s Own Country was very, very nearly my favourite film at 2017’s NZIFF (just edged out by Call Me by Your Name) and is a lush love story between lonely farmer Johnny and Romanian migrant worker Gheorghe in the misty fields of God’s Own Country – Yorkshire, not New Zealand. The frame is always simmering with emotions – of loneliness and longing and love. What a great feature debut from Francis Lee, who held a lovely Q+A after the screening that made it obvious just how well-considered every aspect of this film was. Anyway, catch a free screening at the Basement Theatre next Thursday. Queer Scenes is for a free monthly film screening aimed at bringing LGBTQI+ people together to see themselves on screen.
Thursday 15 August | Basement Theatre
To be honest, I’ve read this event’s “About” page three times and am still not completely sure what it’s about. Billed as Auckland’s “most prestigious, popular and influential creative festival”, its aim is to “pull community together, shape ideas and celebrate the power of good design to change and influence the world around us”. I’m generally getting the idea it’s a design festival which spans across many, many areas: art, graphic design, film, music, photography, advertising, poetry etc. You’ll get to hear industry speakers and meet artists, plus attend additional add-on events, like this lunch at Clooney with Dutch future-food expert Caroline Niebling. The lunch is five-courses, featuring five chefs tackling the humble sausage. Tickets are $65.
Thursday 15-Saturday 17 August | Aotea Centre
Deep Dive Festival 2019
Love a good festival, me. This programme does a deep dive into Auckland’s music underground, finding the best shit in town, featuring CINDY, Dbldbl, A.C. Freazy, Party Dad and more.
Friday 16 August | Whammy Bar/Backroom