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collage of images from Awesome Arts Access Auction 2018AWESOME ARTS ACCESS AUCTION: What a night of fun, bidding, networking and entertainment! Thanks to the generosity of many sponsors, supporters, volunteers and auctioneer Grant Henderson of Bayleys Real Estate, the sixth Awesome Arts Access Auction was a huge success. A special thanks to Victoria Spackman, Director of Te Auaha, for providing a fantastic venue. For more and to see the images on Flickr

Latest news updates

Deaf actor wins Attitude Artistic Achievement Award 2018

29 November 2018
Shaun FaheyThe late Shaun Fahey, a Deaf actor and leader in inclusive theatre, received the Attitude Artistic Achievement Award 2018 at last night’s Attitude Awards in Auckland. Shaun, who passed away in August this year, performed with Equal Voices Arts in Hamilton. Through his performances, he showcased New Zealand Sign Language and enabled Deaf audience members to enjoy theatre in their own language. Read more 

Audio described show at BATS Theatre

23 November 2018
Actual Fact characters“Using audio description is a beautiful meeting point between enhancing the show’s accessibility for blind and low vision people, and exploring its key themes of communication,” says Isobel MacKinnon, co-director of Actual Fact, on at BATS Theatre in Wellington until Saturday 1 December. The touch tour and audio described performance is on Wednesday 28 November. Read more

Audio described ballet for blind and low-vision patrons

16 November 2018
Royal New Zealand Ballet’s 2018 Ryman Healthcare Season of The Nutcracker, which is touring the country over November and December, includes audio described performances for blind and low-vision audience members. The Nutcracker opened in Wellington, and is now touring to Dunedin, Christchurch and Auckland. Read more 

LitCrawl celebrates diversity in Wellington

12 November 2018
LitCrawl design“There’s no such thing as a disabled writer. We are all just writers.” That was the moot of a debate attended by a huge crowd at CQ Hotels Wellington during the LitCrawl Wellington festival on Saturday 10 November. Organised by Wellington writing group Crip the Lit, the debate included Mandy Hager, Paula Tesoriero and Henrietta Bollinger taking the negative, with Steff Green, Alisha Tyson and Trish Green taking the affirmative. Matthew Jansen was the adjudicator. Read more

Te ao Māori offers light to prisoners

25 October 2018
Rue-Jade MorganPrisoners at Otago Corrections Facility listen to Rue-Jade Morgan when he tells them they can change their lives for the better. That’s because they know he’s been where they are now; that he once spent several years inside for aggravated robbery. These days, Jade (Kai Tahu) teaches a foundation studies course at Otago Polytechnic. As part of his role, he also teaches a tikanga programme at Otago Corrections Facility. Read more

Te Mana Wahine in women’s prisons

25 October 2018
Te Mana Wahine in ARWCFA new cultural programme, Te Mana Wahine, is responding to the growing population of women prisoners in New Zealand by working with the women to develop their identity and cultural belonging, and build their connections to whānau and tamariki. It's been introduced into each of the three women’s prisons: Auckland Region Women’s Corrections Facility, Arohata Women’s Prison in Wellington, and Christchurch Women’s Prison. Read more




Arts Access Advocates



JOB VACANCY: Arts Access Aotearoa requires the services of an Arts in Corrections Advisor. Applications close 14  January 2019. For more info

Report cover
MENTAL HEALTH INQUIRY REPORT: This link includes a useful video summarising the ten recommendations in He Ara Oranga: Report of the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction, and an editorial reflecting on the report and future action.

Music at MIX
CREATIVE SPACES’ RESEARCH: “As in any field – whether it’s education, criminal justice, technology, gender equality, sports, the arts – we need research to convince others and strengthen the case for more support.” Read Richard Benge’s blog

Vincents Art Workshop
Creative spaces provide support and opportunities to make art for people, often with limited opportunities to do so. Read about the history of these spaces, which date back to 1985 when Vincents Art Workshop was founded in downtown Wellington.  

wheelchair user and companion
CALL FOR COMPANION CARD SCHEME: "Every country should have a companion card system," says an Australian visitor whose son is disabled. Richard Benge, Arts Access Aotearoa, joins the discussion on NewstalkZB

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern
IMPORTANCE OF ACCESS: "One little word when it comes to the arts is so valuable and important to me - access." Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern gave the opening address at Creative New Zealand’s conference, Nui Te Korero, in May 2018. Watch the video 

CONNECTING THROUGH MUSIC: Chamber Music New Zealand received the Arts Access Creative New Zealand Arts For All Award 206 for its Accessible Concerts Programme, which includes relaxed performances and workshops. Watch the video and read more


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