Splore Festival’s first programme release

Welcome home Darling!

Splore Festival’s first programme release is sure to ignite the festival’s home, Tāpapakānga, for the weekend of 24-26 February. From outrageous acts performing in Saturday night’s Cabaret – to the main stage headline act of multi-platform art-radical and genre-defying vocalist, Santigold – the audience will have a ton of inspiration to get hyped for the festival theme of Darling.

Santigold is a Philadelphia-born musician whose debut album came out in 2008 to massive acclaim. She’s gone on to collaborate with Kanye West, David Byrne, Diplo and more, and has just released her fourth album Spirituals.

UK’s Kae Tempest will make a welcome return to Splore 2023 after their transfixing performance at Splore 2020. The lyrical poet packs emotional heft with their live shows and has recently released their fourth album This Line is a Curve.

Absolutely! Cabaret leaves no doubt that Saturday night will feature a fabulous, uplifting, hair-raising array of performers that will take the cabaret evening by absolute storm.

Performance Director Emma Herbert Vickers says “ ‘Absolutely’ is a perfect word in the vocabulary of the cabaret’s MCs. Whipping up the energy of the crowd while introducing the night’s fabulous acts, flattering and flirting with the audience, ‘absolutely’ is both liberating and affirmative. With “absolutely not!” being the contrary pendulum that swings to topics of consent, fashion faux pas and outrage, expect everything this now infamous cabaret has come to promise.

Described as a “cabaret star” by New York Times and “utterly unique” by Time Out, Empress Stah returns to Splore with her internationally acclaimed aerial performance Stargasm.

Featuring the world’s first laser butt plug, this eye-opening show was created as a collaboration with electro-clash musical star Peaches. Becoming airborne, Empress Stah emits multicoloured laser beams, a disco light show like no other!

Joining Empress Stah is arguably New Zealand’s leading performance artist; Hannah Tasker-Poland. Her compelling artistry and powerful stage presence hang somewhere between the human and the divine, exploring boundaries, going beyond them and taking us with her.

Dust Palace will present ‘Haus of YOLO’. The show invites the audience to join the party with a new wave of fashion. This upbeat experiment of circus, costume making, and modern middle-class slavery, is jam-packed with extraordinary skills and sewing chaos.

Introducing into this thrilling lineup of performers is classically trained dancer – Ever Changing Boy aka Bjorn Aslund. Be prepared for his cutting-edge blend of contemporary cabaret and multi-genre dance, one of Aotearoa’s rising stars is not to be missed.

Local live acts confirmed for Splore include Kora, Ladi 6, Rubi Du, Anthonie Tonnon, Rei, KITA, Huia, Half Hexagon, Mokomokai, Warren Duncan and Zuke – along with a host of DJs.

Spread across six stages of entertainment expect a Listening Lounge hosted by Russell Brown where society’s hot topics are debated, secret intimate bars amongst the woodlands, Wendy’s Wellness zone where yoga, breathwork, wellness remedies and massage can be found. Stumble upon and dance ‘til dawn at Lucky Star, where late-night shenanigans are a must. Contemporary art installations beckon amongst the pōhutukawa, spot roving acts and street show artists across the site and on the Piazza stage, while in the village square, delectable and affordable food satiate your appetite and roam the markets to purchase your festival needs.

The multi-generational festival welcomes the audience to explore and immerse themselves in multi-genre entertainment in one of Tāmaki Makaurau’s most beautiful beachside parks.

John Minty, Festival Director says “I know I speak on behalf of every Splorer in giving special thanks to Tāpapakanga’s iwi, Ngāti Paoa and Ngāti Whanaunga for the use of their ancestral home and their inspirational welcome and powhiri to open the festival – it remains a festival fixture and highlight”.

First announcement of Music programme:

Headline acts
Santigold, Kae Tempest

Performance acts
Empress Stah, Hannah Tasker Poland, Ever Changing Boy, Dust Palace

Live local acts
Kora, Ladi 6, Rubi Du, Anthonie Tonnon, Rei, KITA, Huia, Half Hexagon, Mokomokai, Warren Duncan and Zuke

FilthAKL, Frank Booker, Stefaan van Leuven, Chiccoreli (featuring Tali), AwB b/b Hurricane Emily, Sanoi, Heylady, Amandamania, Takas, DIMPRI, Lauren Gin, Janiac, Pork Crackle, Ugly Disco, Hudge, Bobby Brazuka, Mr Big Stuff and The Dastardly Bounder.

When: 24-26 February 2023
Where: 70km SE of Auckland city at Tāpapakanga Regional Park
Splore 2023 theme: DARLING

For more information or to book tickets visit the Splore website.

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