Two of Northland's best known entertainers have joined with the NZ Symphony Orchestra to read some classic Kiwi children's books as part of the NZSO's school holiday programme.

On Wednesday Suzy Cato, who grew up in Kaikohe, read Mrs Wishy-Washy's Farm by Joy Cowley, in an online initiative that had NZSO playing along with new, original music.

The next entertainer taking part is Kerikeri actor/musician/entertainer Troy Kingi, who will read The Bomb, by Sacha Cotter, on Sunday from 11am.

Under the Storytime initiative NZSO and special guests create a story-time treat for school holidays, with special readings of four of their favourite stories.

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Storytime in association with Read NZ Te Pou Muramura features four popular and award-winning New Zealand children's books presented in an exciting new way with music.

Acclaimed New Zealand composer Claire Cowan has written four chamber music soundtracks to accompany filmed readings of the classic Mrs Wishy-Washy's Farm by Joy Cowley, Sacha Cotter's New Zealand Book Awards and Margaret Mahy Book of the Year winner The Bomb, the best-selling The Little Yellow Digger by Betty Gilderdale, and
Miriama Kamo's NZ Book Awards finalist The Stolen Stars of Matariki.

Entertainer Suzy Cato reads Mrs Wishy-Washy's Farm by Joy Cowley as part of the NZ Symphony Orchestra's Storytime school holiday programme. Photo / Supplied
Entertainer Suzy Cato reads Mrs Wishy-Washy's Farm by Joy Cowley as part of the NZ Symphony Orchestra's Storytime school holiday programme. Photo / Supplied

Each book will be read by a special guest, with the videos posted on the NZSO's Facebook page and at live.nzso.co.nz each Wednesday and Sunday during the school holidays. The first was children's television presenter Cato on Wednesday.

Actor, performer and New Zealander of the Year Jennifer Ward-Lealand reads The Little Yellow Digger (on July 15, 11am) and television presenter and author Miriama Kamo will read her story The Stolen Stars of Matariki (July 19, 11am).

"During the school holidays the NZSO and some very special narrators will tell four beautiful New Zealand stories with musical accompaniment," Cowley, who last week won a 2020 Arts Foundation Icon Award Whakamana Hiranga, said.

"Stories bring whānau together, so grab your kids or grandkids and enjoy these four great Kiwi stories with the NZSO."