A Rotorua favourite, Opera in the Pā, will be given a new life next year, after a four-year hiatus.

Opera in the Pā is back on the events calendar and, while the venue has changed, concert-goers can still expect a breath-taking backdrop for the musical line-up.

Elisha Hulton (mezzo soprano) has taken on two roles for the event, as a performer and the concert's musical director.

"The last Opera in the Pā was in 2015 but, with the passing of Bill Kingi who, with his wife Gay, established the event, the committee thought it timely to bring it back," Hulton said.


"Opera in the Pā 2019 will be a beautiful and breath-taking evening of opera in the heart of Rotorua. We are working with Tamaki Village to create a stunning pā experience on the Village Arts Green."

Noel Lamberton, (left) Elisha Hulton, and Joanne La Grouw. Photo / Andrew Warner
Noel Lamberton, (left) Elisha Hulton, and Joanne La Grouw. Photo / Andrew Warner

She said Māori waiata and Pacific Island music would be interwoven with famous operatic tunes at the event.

"Opera lovers will be excited to hear that internationally acclaimed artists and members of Sol3 Mio: Pene Pati (tenor), Amitai Pati (tenor) and Moses McKay (baritone) will be taking centre stage alongside 2018 Lexus Song Quest Winner Joel Amosa (baritone bass), and Bay of Plenty soprano, Kararaina Walker," Hulton said.

"Singers will benefit from the exceptional piano skills of Ludwig Treviranus as accompanist for the evening."

One of Rotorua's favourite sons, and Broadway star, Turanga Merito, will entertain attendees as master of ceremonies.

"A key component of Opera in the Pā's events is to provide an opportunity for aspiring singers to showcase their talents on the big stage. Rotorua's future stars Hohaia Macfarlane (tenor) and Anahera Waiariki (mezzo soprano) have been given this honour for the 2019 event."

Guests enjoying the lawn are encouraged to take their own blankets and/or low folding chairs. They can also bring their own picnics or snacks.

What: 2019 Opera in the Pā
Where: Rotorua Village Arts Green
When: Waitangi Day (Wednesday, February 6) at 5.30pm
Tickets: Ticketmaster, general admission for the lawn $40, seated $60