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Jetstar $30,000 grant makes The Big Bang possible

November 12, 2013 Corporate No Comments Email Email

The New Zealand Festival was announced today as the seventh recipient of the Jetstar Flying Start Programme grant, receiving a grant made up of $15,000 cash and $15,000 in travel, to be used for a ground-breaking performance by 500 Kiwis.

Jetstar Flying Start project- The Big Bang Project.  4 November 2013The grant will be used to help facilitate flights and ground costs for hundreds of young people from Christchurch and Auckland to Wellington where they will join a 500-strong group made-up of Strike Percussion, Kora, Wellington community choirs and the 200 young drummers who will perform a unique drumming and vocal performance, titled The Big Bang, to open the bi-annual three-week New Zealand Festival on Friday 21 February.

In preparation for this special event, 200 young people from Wellington, Christchurch and Auckland have been training with professional musicians from Strike Percussion, a ground-breaking programme for children which not only teaches valuable musical skills but also harnesses the transformative power of collaboration and working towards a common goal.

New Zealand Festival Artistic Director, Shelagh Magadza, says The Big Bang opening event will mirror the spirit of the New Zealand Festival.

“The Festival is for the whole community so it’s fitting that it kicks off with a spectacular public event. It’s an exciting way for the whole community to participate in launching the Festival and give kids from around New Zealand a night to remember. We are so thankful to have the support of the Jetstar Flying Start Programme to help fly the students and crew around the country and make this possible.”

Jetstar Flying Start Programme judge and rugby league legend Steve Price said that the grant has unlocked an unforgettable opportunity for the children.

“This grant will allow a large group of young people to take part in a prominent national event that may not have been a reality for them. They are dedicating so much energy and creativity to preparing for the performance that it will be awesome to see them wow everyone on opening night.”

Grant Kerr, Head of Jetstar New Zealand, said the creativity, ambition and commitment behind The Big Bang project captivated the judging panel.

“We were very impressed with the impact that this project will have on hundreds of Kiwis families. Each child involved in The Big Bang project will be making their family, school and community very proud and we’re thrilled to be making this world-class opportunity a reality,” Mr Kerr said.

The Jetstar Flying Start Programme has awarded $210,000 in travel and cash to seven New Zealand not-for-profit organisations since early 2012. Applications for the next grant close at 5.00pm 31 December 2013. Any New Zealand based not-for-profit community group or organisation in need of a Flying Start is encouraged to apply. Full application details and conditions can be found at

The New Zealand Festival celebrates the world’s top international artists as well as nurturing and presenting work from some of the best artists and producers in New Zealand. An iconic event on New Zealand’s cultural landscape and a leading multi-arts festival in Australasia – the Festival has been taking place in February-March on every even-numbered year since 1986. The Big Bang is partnered by TV3 and supported by the Wellington Regional Amenities Fund.

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