More than 10,000 tickets have been sold to the opening night of one of the hottest events on the Auckland Arts Festival calendar.
Carabosse Fire Garden, created by a French collective of inventors, craftsmen and firemasters who specialise in setting alight large public spaces, this weekend turns Auckland's Domain into a blazing landscape of enormous iron sculptures, flower pots and steampunk inventions.
The high demand for tickets means it will be a major event for the city, which hosts artists from around New Zealand and the world at the now-annual Auckland Arts Festival. The festival starts today and runs until Sunday, March 20.
In another New Zealand first, The James Plays begin this weekend. Set during the turbulent 15th century reigns of James I, James II and James III of Scotland, the three plays were written by Scottish playwright Rona Munro and are performed using modern language.
A full Scots cast, led by Blythe Duff of Taggart fame, arrives in Auckland tomorrow while at the NZ Herald Festival Garden at midday on Friday actors Callum Morrison and Brian James O'Sullivan, in full kilt and clan regalia, play bagpipe and accordion respectively.
All three plays are complete in themselves and can be seen alone. As a trilogy, each continues the story of the last and some characters recur throughout. Tickets to The James Plays are also in high demand while Dust to Dusky, which starts tonight, and Meow Meow's The Little Mermaid are also selling fast.
Nanogirl's (aka Michelle Dickinson) Science Show: Big Bang, Little Bang! on Sunday, March 13 has sold out, with an additional show announced to cope with demand while Sufjan Stevens' only Auckland show has also sold out.