Events in Nelson

Spotlight (Thursday 23rd March 2023)

SPOTLIGHT is a dance extravaganza featuring the best of local talent. Contemporary, Jazz, Hip Hop, Musical Theatre and Lyrical are all featured in this show that has something for everyone.

Many of the dancers are travelling to New York and LA in July and are excited to showcase their performances to local audiences as they prepare for this trip of a lifetime.

Don’t miss out. Get your tickets now!


Nelson Fringe: Sajeela Kershi: Free Speech & Rah-Rah Skirts! (Thursday 23rd-Saturday 25th March 2023)

Multi-award winning British Asian Comedian Sajeela Kershi returns to NZ with her brand new WIP show! It picks up where her critically acclaimed show 'Fights Like A Girl' left off – a powerhouse-empowering show that she toured NZ in 2019.

In this show, Sajeela delves into the post-pandemic geo politics; culture wars, war on land, warring families – all through the cultural prism of her own experiences.

She wonders if Privilege is the new pandemic? Whilst we are bitchin’ about lack of free speech in the West, women in Afghanistan are invisible, denied a voice and education. Whilst we bemoan who has the right to wear a dress and who wears the trousers in our society, Iran makes individuals disappear for a slip of the tongue or a slip of a (enforced) scarf.

Who holds the chalk that draws the line on what is or isn't offensive? On what you can and can't joke about? Whoever it is, the comedians, satirists and creatives want a quiet word with you, buddy.

Who will save humanity?

WARNING: Contains pinches of Cultural Guffaws, generous sprinkling of Jokery Wokery. Due to show Climatic change, Hearts & Snowflakes may melt.

Sajeela Kershi (UK)
Genre: Stand Up Comedy, Storytelling


Nelson Fringe: Charmian Hughes: She! (Thursday 23rd-Saturday 25th March 2023)

Do we ever grow out of our dreams and obsessions? Do you sometimes wonder about your first love and what would happen if you met them again? Maybe after 47 years. 6 months. 3 weeks. 2 days. 4 hours? Are you still jealous of your older sister?

Don't worry! British comedian Charmian feels your pain even though she herself is happily married and calm. Aged 8, she got her life lessons from a 1965 adventure fantasy film 'She', starring blonde Bond bombshell Ursula Andress on the eternal quest for the perfect love. They were all the wrong lessons! But now, together, with the ancient wisdom of The Colossal Squid, we can at last escape their legacy of Obsession, Jealousy and Revenge!

''Hammer Horror, Colossal Squids and solidly fantastic standup. Charmian Hughes has it all. She is joyfully silly and beautifully condemning, masking satirical quips with an impish charm.'' Binge Fringe (Edfringe 2022)

''So relaxed and guileless that you have to remind yourself of the perfectly matched writing and performing skills that it takes to dance this comedy waltz…Ursula Andress herself could not enchant you like this.'' Scotsman (Edfringe 2022)

Charmian Hughes (UK)
Genre: Stand Up Comedy


Lunchtime concert: Allison Cormack & Pauline Boyd (Thursday 23rd March 2023)

Spinto Soprano Allison Cormack and friends return for another Lunchtime Concert at NCMA. Accompanied by Pauline Boyd.

NCMA’s Lunchtime Concert Series is proudly sponsored by Nelson Pine Industries.

A merchant fee may be charged on credit and debit card transactions.

Cash and eftpos available for door sales at Nelson Centre of Musical Arts from 10am – 4pm, Monday to Friday.

Please contact Nelson Centre of Musical Arts if you require wheelchair seating on 03 548 9477 or


Tom Rodwell (Thursday 23rd March 2023)

Auckland singer-guitarist, blues musician and writer Tom Rodwell isn’t as well known as he should be, unless you read the fine print on recordings by Coco Davis and Don McGlashan’s last Lucky Stars.

His Wood & Waste is a delightful and sometimes dark journey from downbeat electric blues (Don’t Be a Fugitive All Your Life) through idiosyncratic funk (Keep on Knockin’), slippery exotica (Plenty Time bringing West African juju guitars to where Harry Nilsson and Ry Cooder find common ground) and earthy slide guitar blues (the steamy Touch Me Like a Teddy Bear).

Here too is the rolling Caribbean simmer of She Got Me Boiling (cannibalism for your dancing shoes), addictively supple pop (Make Believe) and ethereal guitar paralleling the reflective, exceptionally beautiful Dead End Road.

Rodwell – whose guitar playing has the warmth and fluidity of J.J. Cale and Bill Frisell or the grit of a Chicago blues bruiser – delights in the oblique: Keep on Knockin’ mentions 19th century British polymath William Morris and American painter Edward Hopper.

An eclectic, danceable show, going from raucous to moody and back, and generally a good time for all bohemians.

Come groove in the Fairfield Ballroom.


Tūpuna Pono Debate (Thursday 23rd March 2023)

Is it too late to be good ancestors?

What will it take to turn things around?

These questions and many more will be debated as part of the inaugural Tūpuna Pono Debate!

Spaces are limited. You must register to attend


Nelson Fringe: Cynthia & Gertie Ride Again! (A work in progress) (Thursday 23rd-Saturday 25th March 2023)

“A highly entertaining evening.” (for Cynthia and Gertie Go Baroque).

The great travelling opera singer Miss Cynthia Fortitude is booked to give a musical lecture for the inaugural meeting of NBOG (Nelson Bays Opera Guild). Her indefatigable accompanist, Miss Gertrude Rallentando has been called away unexpectedly, so Cynthia must battle on without her. Laughs, gaffs and high jinks eschew! Join Helen Moulder (The Bicycle and the Butcher’s Daughter) as she presents the newest instalment of Cynthia’s musical (mis)adventures with music by Mozart, Haydn and Puccini.

'Cynthia and Gertie Ride Again' is a new solo show, featuring Helen Moulder as her world-famous opera singing character, Cynthia Fortitude. “I wanted to do something to honour the character of Gertie, Cynthia’s long-suffering accompanist,” Helen says. “My good friend, Rose Beauchamp, who played Gertie for 30 years, passed away in 2021, and I felt that her wonderful character of Gertie had to live on somehow. Hence this new show.”

Willow Productions (Nelson)
Genre Theatre, Comedy, Music
Age Rating Family Friendly


Nelson Fringe Workshop: Reiss Kershi (Friday 24th March 2023)

Brit/Asian Actor/Producer Reiss Kershi gives advice and share tips on how to channel your passion for film/acting/producing into a career.

Come and hear this engaging actor/producer tipped for great things. Bring your lunch, pen & paper and willingness to make things happen for yourself! Everyone welcome!

Part Ted Talk, part coaching, part behind-the-scenes with a few A-List showbizz friends dropping by (did we mention Reiss is also an impressionist).

Reiss is a Brit/Asian Actor/Producer. His professional career began in 2016, in the feature film 'City of Tiny Lights'.

He began producing, putting his faith and commitment behind films he believed in. He's since produced films across different genres from music videos, TV pilots and short films, including the critically acclaimed BAFTA's 'London's Forgotten'.

Reiss' interests are in giving a platform to difficult issues seldom tackled. Aware that we all need kindness from other creatives, he is committed to helping fellow actors or wannabe-producers through coaching, mentoring, or just advice and contacts. He's helped others land big roles in tv shows/films, and believes in giving back where you can as a creative.


Book Sale (Saturday 25th-Sunday 26th March 2023)

Celebrate the weekend with our Library Book Sale.

This will feature fiction books of all genres, non-fiction reads, and children's fiction for ages 0 - 12. With so much to choose from you are sure to find one or two items to spark your interest and keep you inspired. Held inside the Elma Turner Pop-up Library.

Saturday 25 March, 10am - 4pm
Sunday 26 March, 1pm - 4pm


The Sounds of Stage and Screen (Saturday 25th March 2023)

A journey through the history of Opera, Theatre and Film.

Whether a fan of film, opera, musical theatre or television NBS Nelson City Brass’ multimedia presentation ‘The Sounds of Stage and Screen’ will have something for you.

Under the baton of Nigel E. Weeks and featuring no less than 5 current national champions and multiple current and past members of the National Band of New Zealand NBS Nelson City Brass is one of New Zealand’s premier brass ensembles.

Join them for an evening of Bernstein, Mozart, Williams and Lloyd Webber for the Sounds of Stage and Screen.


Seafood Saturday (Saturday 25th March 2023)

Seafood Saturday
Saturday 25th March 2023

Join us to celebrate our kaimoana and the kaimahi who deliver it to us, from sea to table!

Upper Trafalgar Street will be alive with free family-friendly activities and kaimoana for the kids.

Come along to enjoy free fish and chips for the kids, a build-a-burger bar, fish filleting demonstrations, careers information, face painting, fishy craft making in the Nelson Provincial Museum, a magic pirate show and more.

Let’s celebrate the seafood industry in Aotearoa!

Find out more at

Seafood Saturday | 25th March 2023 | 12pm – 4pm | Upper Trafalgar Street, Nelson


Seals to Eels on Scooter Wheels (Saturday 25th March 2023)

Starting in Tahunanui, we will be riding our 50cc Motor Scooters an estimated distance of 225 Kilometres all the way over to Lake Rotoiti and back as a fundraiser for the Nelson Marlborough Rescue Helicopter.

We will be begin the ride to Saint Arnaud via Mapua, Motueka, Ngatimoti, Motueka Valley and Korere-Tophouse Rd for roughly 120km returning via Kerr’s hill, 88 valley, Waimea West and Moutere Highway to the Speights Alehouse.

Ending at Speights, entrants are strongly encouraged to bring their families along and meet for the "aftermath". It is assumed you will be sick of riding the scooter by then and will need a trailer home anyway!!

For more information, head to our website:


Lachy Hamilton Jazz Trio (Sunday 26th March 2023)

Lachy Hamilton Trio, features:
Harry Morrison – Double Bass
Patrick Danao – Drums
Lachy Hamilton – Saxophone / Compositions

Hailing from the small community on Scotland Island, Sydney, Australia, Lachy Hamilton began playing the piano at the age of four. Taking up the clarinet, and then saxophone soon after, his musical journey has taken him around the world performing with the likes of James Morrison, Wycliffe Gordon, Kate Ceberano, James Muller, Sarah McKenzie, Patti Austin, The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and many more.

In March 2019, Hamilton released his debut album ‘Alchemy’. Inspired by Paolo Coelho’s novel The Alchemist, the album features the talents of Australia’s brightest up and coming musicians.

“[The Alchemist’s] ‘Urim and Thummin’ spawns a Hamilton tenor solo showing a striking ability to alchemise a liquid flow of ideas into a much more robust and compelling statement.” – John Shand (SMH 2019).

As James Morrison says: “with Hamilton, the future of jazz is in good hands”.


Nelson Fringe: The Latin Black Sheep Tour (Sunday 26th March 2023)

Are you drawn to the vibe of Latin American music?

The Latin Black Sheep Tour will introduce you to the best of the most rebellious Pop-Rock from South America. Let the music shake your soul on this acoustic journey, with Alvaro also sharing stories about the songs and artists.

From Uruguay to New Zealand and all across the world, it is well known that Latin music is often on another level. From the 70’s, South America went through different social situations that were the ignition for culture development. Through these years, many musicians raised their voice in support of their principles. Due to the political situation, they had to find the way to express themselves without being banned by the authorities. Instead of musicians being restrained, they created better music, better lyrics, and better performances that rolled over the continent, into a massive cultural explosion.

Alvaro Dafonte (Nelson)
Genre: Music, Storytelling


Nelson Fringe: The Book Addict (Sunday 26th-Tuesday 28th March 2023)

The Book Addict is a story of journeys, transformations and the way books deepen and contextualise life - its joys and rebellions, griefs and discoveries. Annie takes the audience on an intimate, around-the-world journey through time and place, from her New Zealand childhood, finding a second home in Greece, to a whirlwind career, with some surprising adventures along the way.

The Book Addict has been performed in a theatre, a pub and people’s homes, needing only an audience and the storyteller to create this intimate event. Annie sips a cocktail as she perches on a bar stool amid a myriad of books. Her hope is that in telling her stories, audiences will see echoes of their own. The Greek poet, Pindar, writes: “Become who you are, having learned what that is”. The Book Addict is one woman’s struggle to figure that out.

“A triumph of truth and language. The writing is sublimely beautiful. The imagery is shimmering.” Ralph McAllister (Director and Theatre Reviewer)
“An extraordinary life story told with joy, compassion and panache.” Rachel McAlpine (Poet)

Writer and Actor Annie Ruth
Director Robin Payne
Genre: Theatre, Storytelling


Nelson Fringe: Silent Spring Revisited (Sunday 26th-Tuesday 28th March 2023)

Jan Bolwell revisits Rachel Carson’s famous environmental book 'Silent Spring' in an absorbing and informative solo performance. She explores Carson’s struggle to enlighten people about the dangers of pesticides, and gives the work a contemporary and local relevance by introducing Kiwi ecologist Mike Joy’s challenges to our politicians about the environment.

Rachel Carson, the great American environmentalist, has been in Jan’s life since she was nine years old. Her conservationist grandmother introduced her to Carson’s famous book ‘Silent Spring’ that exposed the dangers of the chemical pesticide DDT. Jan revisits the book through adult eyes, creating a solo theatre work on Carson’s fight for nature.

Jan says "I try also to make Carson's work relevant to a 21st century New Zealand audience. These are cataclysmic times with Covid and climate change, so it feels timely to look again at Carson and the environmental and ecological movement that she helped spearhead through her writing."

An exciting creative team has worked collaboratively on this work - director Annie Ruth, composer Jan Bolton, and lighting designer Helen Todd.

Jan Bolwell (Kāpiti Coast)
Genre: Theatre


Live music Series - Solo guitar 'An afternoon in the gardens of Spain' (Sunday 26th March 2023)

Miles takes you on a nostalgia trip through Spain with a selection of some of the most beautiful and iconic works written for guitar from the 17th to the 20th century with works by Gaspar Sanz, Fernando Sor, Francisco Tarrega, Federico Torroba and tradional Flamenco pieces.

Miles is an outstanding guitarist with a profound affinity for Spanish music. He has had a highly successful career as a professional musician performing and teaching in many countries including performances in Spain.

Miles lives in Nelson where he teaches both Classical and Flamenco guitar at the Nelson Centre of Musical Arts.


Nelson Fringe: Dancing With Debra (Monday 27th March 2023)

Dancing is Debra's No 1 passion in life, with her favourite affirmation, 'I was born to be a dancer'. Dancing With Debra is a metaphor for the way Debra has moved through life.

This one-woman show is set to entertain, confront and challenge beliefs about people with Down Syndrome and disabilities.

Debra has attended various forms of dance classes over the years, which has allowed her to develop her own unique freestyle and lay claim to being the ‘Queen of Improvisation’. In this show, Debra has choreographed her unique dance style to a carefully selected soundtrack ranging from Beyonce to Patea Māori Club with storytelling about her journey to adulthood.

This is a show of uplifting optimism and overcoming barriers, a story about the power of self-belief. Be prepared to be charmed by this fun and poignant performance, with some surprise moments of audience inclusion and interaction.

Debra Allen (Nelson)
Genre: Storytelling, Dance, Music