Governor General Dame Patsy Reddy will attend the final concert of the New Zealand Opera School at the Royal Wanganui Opera House on Saturday January 19.

Opera school founder and chairman Donald Trott said he had received confirmation from Government House yesterday to say the Governor General and her husband David Gascoigne would be in Whanganui for the final concert.

Dame Patsy Reddy will also attend the function after the concert at Heritage House where she will be presenting the winning students with annual scholarships and awards.

The final night concert was always a big night and well booked in advance, Trott said.


"Whanganui people are marvellous. They always get right behind the school.

"We are very fortunate to have such strong support.''

Last year's concert had a capacity audience and was described as a ''knockout''.

Because this 2019 School marks the 25th year of the school a spectacular concert on the river is planned for Thursday, January 17 starting at 7.30pm.

A pontoon will be constructed during the day on Thursday and will provide the stage with a walkway from the Waimarie building on to the Riverboat Waimarie.

The 21 opera students will fill the decks of the river boat while specialised soloists including Sol3Mio, (Samoan brothers Pene and Amitai and their cousin Moses) and video screen live appearances of other well known alumni including Simon O'Neill and Bianca Andrews.

A waka will come up river from Putiki to open the concert and draw alongside the Waimarie.

Trott said it was very special to have Dame Patsy arriving for the final night and the scholarship presentations.


"It means a lot, it really does."