Art & creativity  |  10 Aug 2020

Christchurch’s new free spring music festival – Go Live! – promises a top line-up of local acts.

The multi-venue festival will feature a range of shows and special events over nine days from Thursday, 24 September.

Lyttelton legends The Eastern will kick off the concerts in Victoria Square on Friday, 25 September, along with Deep Water Creek and Adam Hattaway.

They are among a raft of performers – including One Waka, Dolphin Friendly, Katie Thompson, Mark Vanilau, Dillastrate, PRINS, Flip Grater, Dusty Hustle, Lil Chuck, The Settlers, The Ranchsliders and Hawaiian Maiden – to take the outdoor stage or appear at venues across the city.

Christchurch City Council Events and Arts Manager Lucy Blackmore says the free urban festival will bring the best beats to the city, along with supporting the local music scene.

“After a tough time, what better way to celebrate spring than with a new festival that brings together the greatest Christchurch sounds and performances,” Ms Blackmore says.

“The Go Live! Festival will be a musical extravaganza where multiple styles intersect in a range of sets across the city, along with industry-focused seminars.

“Christchurch is certainly ready for a party and the festival provides the time and place. We are also thrilled to support our local artists after the COVID-19 pandemic has stymied everyone’s plans.

“We are ‘going live’ to reconnect our community and our amazing music scene post-lockdown.

“All three big shows in Victoria Square will be open to the public. However, the Go Live! Festival concerts at indoor venues will be ticketed because of space and age constraints.”

The Go Live! Festival will feature a mix of larger outdoor, all-ages concerts and smaller R18 shows across 12 Bar, Dux Central, A Rolling Stone, Grater Goods, Darkroom and Blue Smoke.

People can grab their free tickets from Monday, 24 August via the What’s On Christchurch website.

The Go Live! Festival officially opens on Thursday, 24 September at Tūranga with a special industry session titled How to Market and Promote Your Music.

It will include music industry promoters, managers and distributors Jeff Newton (NZ On Air), Lisa Paris (The Label), Teresa Patterson (MMF) and Nicky Harrop (Rhythmethod), along with popular performer Ladi 6.

The spring event will wind up on Saturday, 3 October at Lyttelton’s Wunderbar with a triple bill featuring Pieces of Molly, Thunderwulf and Dark Matter Hurricane.

The Go Live! Festival is part of the Council’s revamped community events programme.

It will include Sparks taking a break in 2021 because of the impact of the pandemic lockdown on event planning and the New Brighton Fireworks Spectacular moving permanently from November to July. Sparks will return in 2022. It will be replaced next year by three weekend shows by the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra in Victoria Square.

Another new event, the Ōtautahi Winter Festival, will bring people together through lights, performance, visual arts and stargazing.