The 2021 Hawke's Bay Arts Festival has officially begun and bucked the trend of major events being cancelled due to the Covid pandemic.
Instead of the usual grand opening, a small celebration was held on Tuesday evening at Toitoi - Hawke's Bay Arts and Events Centre in Hastings to mark the special occasion of the festival getting under way, while keeping to alert level 2 restrictions.
The 11-day festival includes a revised programme with plenty of exciting events across Hastings, Napier and Havelock North.
The programme includes outstanding theatre productions, a circus/comedy show, musical performances, talks from top authors, and dance shows.
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The theme of the festival this year is Be Open. You can buy tickets and check the programme at hbaf.co.nz.
"Under current constraints it would have been easy to cancel, however, that is not our kaupapa and I am exceptionally proud of what has been achieved by the team with the support of the wider community," Andy Heast, the Hawke's Bay Arts Festival chairman, said.
"The team and I are looking forward to welcoming all our festival friends, old and new, as they come out to enjoy a unique festival experience."
He praised the work of the festival team to put on the festival.
The festival will run from October 20 through to October 31. Some events originally in the festival have been postponed to March 2022.