The lineup has been announced for Wondergarden, Auckland's brand new New Year's Eve festival, with names like Anika Moa, Paul Ubana Jones, Orchestra of Spheres and the trio of Connan Mockasin, Lawrence Arabia and Liam Finn leading the bill.

The all-ages music festival will be hosted in Auckland's Silo Park, the previous home of the annual Laneway Festival, and will also include a dedicated family zone and a selection of street food.

As Wondergarden aims to be the New Year's destination for those staying in Auckland over the holiday period, we caught up with a few of the acts to find out about their best and worst New Year's memories.

While Anika Moa has "never had a bad New Year's Eve", not all the acts have been so lucky.


Mockasin, Arabia and Finn were met with a sea of middle fingers at their last New Year's Eve show, and Baba Rossa from Orchestra Of Spheres had a string of "quite unexceptional" New Year's celebrations - except the one where "I was pretty tripped out...and started seeing dinosaurs on the beach".

Here are a few of the best (or worst!) stories from the bunch:

Jesse Sheehan

"I was drunk and wandering around Tauranga wet and covered in house paint when I spotted what seemed to be an old abandoned building. I decided to check it out.

"I wandered around inside for hours trying to work out where I was before the security guard found me and asked me: "What are you doing in a morgue?"

Paul Ubana Jones

"Boiling hot sun in the palatial gardens of retired couple in the Luberon France. It's December 31st and the drinks are flowing faster than the songs on my set list: 'Je suis Drunk!'

"As night closes a member in the audience says: 'Aren't you meant to be playing the New Year's Concert at Cafe Gregoire in Goult?' How could I forget?"

I borrowed a moped and never made it to Goult...and finally slept in a garden 60 kilometres away from Goult.

The Phoenix Foundation's Lukasz Buda

"I was in Sydney in 2000-2001 with my family and an old school friend was in town so we met up. He made me go to a rave in King's Cross.

"It cost $30 (which was like $200 to the 20-year-old me in 2000), there was no one else there and plus ... that was not my scene, man. So I managed to talk him out of there and he said we had to go to Bondi.

"We had to WALK to Bondi. It's about one and a half hours. So we did it, and New Year's happened as we walked. All the bars in Bondi were full so we walked back.

"He wanted to go back to the rave so we parted ways. I got home at about 5am.
I will cherish these memories forever."


"Most have been good, but my worst New Year's Eve was when I fell off a ladder onto my birthday cake for the next day - it was made of brandy snaps and was ruined.

"I began eating it there and then."

Josh Burgess from Yumi Zouma

"New Year's Eve 2012, I moved into a new apartment in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. After I moved the small amount of stuff I had I went out and had a new too many vinos.

"My phone died and I couldn't remember where my new apartment was. No joke. I wandered around for a while until someone was kind enough to let me charge my phone at their place and figure out where I lived."