Auckland Arts Festival has cancelled almost all remaining Festival shows effective from today.

Festival chief executive David Inns said the Festival has effectively come to a close following the latest Government announcement to limit indoor gatherings to a maximum of 100 people.

“Over the past four days we have been cancelling shows due to the impacts of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) situation and this announcement today means we can no longer continue with our shows.”

The latest cancellation affects tonight’s performances of Estère: Into The Belly of Capricorn at the Spiegeltent by Four Points Auckland, Biladurang, Dimanche at ASB Waterfront Theatre, and

Auckland Theatre Company’s Black Lover at Q Theatre.

“The Festival and our artists are of course hugely disappointed, but we are well aware that we all need to do everything possible to mimimise the potential for the spread of the virus in Aotearoa.”

Mr Inns added that during the past two weeks the Festival had worked with its venues to put measures in place to minimise risk including ensuring additional cleaning and sanitising, limiting attendance numbers where relevant, and putting in place a system to enable contact tracing in general admission venues.

A handful of shows are still going ahead as planned. These are shows with fewer than 100 people in attendance including the final performance of NZ Opera’s Eight Songs for a Mad King and tonight’s performance of Babble at Māngere Arts Centre.

“We want to acknowledge our wonderful artists, hardworking staff and crew, venues, funders and sponsors, patrons and individual givers, and our fantastic audiences, who have been a part of Auckland Arts Festival 2020,” Mr Inns said.

Ticket agencies will be in contact with ticket purchasers to arrange refunds for all cancelled shows. Cancelling these shows has been a major blow for Auckland Arts Festival and the artists. Auckland Arts Festival is asking ticketholders to please consider donating part or all of the value of your ticket to support the Festival. Those who wish to donate can email

For further information, contact:
Sally Woodfield
Marketing and Communications Manager
Auckland Arts Festival
021 868 020

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