New entertainment festival in Taranaki in November
Simon O’Connor / Tips
TAFT CEO Suzanne Porter said she was excited to bring Reset 2020 to the region.
A new festival in Taranaki will help revive a struggling post-Covid-19 entertainment industry, organizers say.
Reset 2020 replaces the Right Royal Cabaret Festival, which was scheduled to run from June 25 to 28, and the Box of Tricks Festival, which was to run from September 26 to October 4.
Both were canceled by the Taranaki Arts Festival Trust (TAFT), which instead created an assortment of cabaret, comedy, music and theater from November 5 to 15.
But who will perform is a secret until the festival’s official launch on August 13.
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TAFT chief executive Suzanne Porter said she was excited to bring live performances back to the region after successfully hosting Womad NZ ten days before the lockdown.
“This festival provides a platform for New Zealand artists to get back to work and, just as vital, gives our local communities the opportunity to reconnect with the festival experience.”
Festival director Lisa Haskell said the festival was established during the lockdown.
“Initially, the project was a way to enable our festival team to maintain our practice and remain sustainable during a time of uncertainty,” she said.
Taranaki musician and founder of New Plymouth Singer Songwriters Anand Rose has said it’s important for the entertainment scene to have events like this after Covid-19.
“It will be good for our national musicians to find work. It will be good to bring them here in Taranaki.”
He said that 50% of the programming in TSB’s Festival of Lights entertainment program were local artists, and he hoped they would have a chance at Reset 2020.
The festival coincides with the last weekend of the Taranaki Garden Festival, which runs from October 30 to November 8 and is also run by TAFT.
The Taranaki Arts Trail will also run from October 30 to November 1.
Devon Hotel owner Peter Tennant said it had been a difficult time for all sectors, and another festival in the area would help recapture the city after Covid-19.
“For the region, it’s fabulous. It brings wallets to the city,” he said.