Visitor Information

The Civic is open for performances only. 

The Civic Box Office opens 90 minutes prior to performances at The Civic.

Practical info

Where are we?

You'll find The Civic on Queen Street, on the corner of Queen Street and Wellesley Street. 

Tickets and Seating

Our Box Office is to the right of the main entrance (on the corner of Queen Street and Wellesley Street) as you come into the building. It opens an hour and a half before the start of performances, for you to collect your tickets.

You can book tickets in three ways:

  • in person at the Box Office at Aotea Centre
  • online through our event pages
  • over the phone with Ticketmaster on 09 970 9700 or 0800 111 999

The Civic is a 2,379 seat theatre. Download the seating map, or take a 3D tour of the theatre.

Parking and Transport

The Civic Car Park is a short walk from Aotea Centre, making it a great option for shows here. It is important however, to remember that sometimes all our venues are filled with events. Make sure you have a backup plan - or book a space in advance.

Pre-paid Parking at the Civic Car Park

A limited number of pre-paid parking spaces are available on Level 2 of the Civic Car Park, which is beneath Aotea Square. Entry is via Greys Avenue only. 

You can only purchase a pre-paid parking voucher at the time you purchase your event tickets. You can also add a pre-paid car park voucher to an existing ticket order by calling the Ticketmaster Call Centre on 0800 111 999 or by visiting the Aotea Centre Box Office.

Pre-paid parking is available from 6.00pm only. 

Public transport

Visit Auckland Transport or download the AT app to see what public transport options are available.

Taxis

For city centre venues, the best spot to meet a taxi is the Bledisloe Street car park at 24 Wellesley Street West. 

Food and drink at The Civic

You can enjoy a pre-show drink in the theatre bar, or for something a bit more substantial, visit Stark’s Café and Bar. Stark’s offers special show-themed cocktails, as well as Caffe L’Affare coffee, tea and cold drinks. If you’re headed to The Civic for a matinee, you can also enjoy cabinet food like filled baguettes, croissants and bagels. It’s a great place to visit for a daytime or showtime treat.

Please note that you can’t take glasses, glass bottles, or hot drinks, into the auditorium for shows. This is because of health and safety concerns. If you want to take a cold drink in to enjoy at your seat, a plastic cup can be provided.

You’re spoiled for choice for a pre-show meal. The Civic is surrounded by great eating options, all in walking distance of the theatre.

Accessibility

All Auckland Live venues can be accessed by wheelchairs and have lifts and ramps to assist those who have difficulty climbing stairs. Companion seats are available for those booking wheelchair spaces and guide dogs are welcome at our venues. For every show, visually impaired patrons can call Ticketmaster on 09 970 9745 any time before 5pm on the day of the show and they will make sure the front of house team is aware of your needs. 

We have two wheelchairs available at the venue for you to use if you or someone you’re coming with has mobility problems. You can book one of these by telephoning Ticketmaster on 09 970 9700 or 0800 111 999.

The Civic was built way back in 1929 and while it’s a gorgeous building, we know that the foyer spaces can be a bit of a maze. There is a lift available, but it can be difficult to find. We suggest you ask one of our team to show you where it is located as soon as you arrive. We’ll be more than happy to help!

We have a hearing aid loop available for all shows. Contact Ticketmaster on 09 970 9700 for advice on the best seats to use it in. To connect to the hearing loop, switch your hearing aids to ‘tele’.

Some of our shows offer signed and audio described performances, so that deaf, blind and partially sighted people can enjoy a great night out at the theatre. 

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Hiring The Civic

If you're a promoter interested in bringing a show to Auckland Live, please visit our Hiring Our Venues page for more information.

If you would like to hire a room or area of The Civic for a meeting, party or conference, please visit the Auckland Conventions website.

About the Venue

The first purpose-built cinema for 'talkies' in the country, The Civic is a much-loved Auckland landmark and entertainment venue. Built in 1929, The Civic was an outstanding example of the ‘atmospheric cinema’ with a unique soft-top design that floats above the auditorium, allowing the famed stars and clouds effect that is a recreation of the Southern Hemisphere sky-scape.

Take Virtual Tour

About The Civic

The Civic is a category one classified protected building and is New Zealand’s premier lyric theatre with 2,379 seats split across two levels.

The Civic, one of the few remaining Atmospheric Theatres in the world, was built in 1929 in just 8 months. It was specifically designed as a 'movie palace' for talking pictures ('talkies'), which had just been introduced to New Zealand. The first purpose-built cinema of this type in the country, The Civic has become a much-loved Auckland landmark and entertainment venue.

The Civic was - and is - an outstanding example of the ‘atmospheric cinema’ with a unique soft-top design that floats above the auditorium, allowing the famed stars and clouds effect that is a recreation of the Southern Hemisphere sky-scape. Look up at the start of a show and see if you can spot the shooting star!

The rich and opulent ‘Rococo style’ interior reflects an Indian rock-hewn temple, and Indian motifs abound. Indian-inspired motifs in the public foyer include seated Buddhas, twisted columns and domed ceilings- and of course, lots of elephants. The main auditorium, with 2,378 seats, features turrets, minarets, spires, tiled roofs, Abyssinian panther statues - often referred to as lions – with their glowing green eyes, have all been faithfully restored to their former glory. 

The Civic had a somewhat turbulent history, but was restored to its former glory in the late 1990s by Auckland City Council, and reopened in December 1999 after a 2 year, $42 million restoration. The restoration provided the opportunity to convert to live theatre capacity and upgrade to modern movie technology. As a result The Civic has become a popular venue for major touring shows while once again providing Auckland’s most sumptuous cinema experience. The Civic is considered the home of musicals in New Zealand.

Alongside acclaimed touring musicals such as Jersey Boys, Mary Poppins, Wicked and Annie, The Civic has hosted leading international singers and entertainers such as Bob Dylan, Roberta Flack, Elaine Page, Katie Melua, The Seekers, UB40, Counting Crows, City and Colour, Marcel Marceau, Eric Idle, Hugh Laurie, David Sedaris as well as hosting the annual NZ International Film Festival - and there are lots more on the way!

The James Wallace Trust manage the previously know Friends of The Civic Trust and their website features a colourful showcase of the space and its stories including a short film called The Mighty Civic.

The Civic is rated Silver for accessibility by Be.Accessible.

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Dancers of The Civic