Blenheim theatre to benefit from Government funding

Kaikoura news
Friday, May 6, 2016

The ASB Theatre in Blenheim will receive $1 million of Government funding to help its development into a significant cultural and economic resource for the Marlborough region.

“The development of the ASB Theatre will be hugely beneficial for the people of Blenheim and the wider Marlborough region,” says local MP Stuart Smith.

“I have been in regular contact with the Prime Minister and senior ministers about the theatre, and I am pleased that my efforts to secure Government support have come to fruition.

“This theatre provides us with a state of the art facility for our performing arts, and will also encourage business and tourism to the region.

“It will increase the variety of shows on offer in Blenheim, enabling more major acts and companies to perform here, rather than just in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. This will provide great enjoyment for our community, and a boost to our regional economy.

“At the same time, the theatre will also benefit local cultural and performing arts groups,” says Mr Smith.

“I have already been to two shows at the theatre, which highlight the diversity of performances on offer. I had the pleasure of attending Dame Kiri Te Kanawa’s performance in March, an internationally esteemed opera singer. And last month, I went to see the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory production by Marlborough Children’s and Youth Theatre.

“This funding will improve the theatre’s financial position and assist in it becoming a cultural hub for our region.

“I’d like to congratulate the local community for raising a significant amount of funding themselves and demonstrating such a strong commitment to this project. There is no doubt that this encouraged the Government’s support,” says Mr Smith.

“Funding the theatre is another sign of the Government’s commitment to regional development in Marlborough. I look forward to celebrating this announcement tonight by attending the opening night of Mamma Mia.”

The theatre is also now eligible to apply for support from the newly renamed Regional Culture and Heritage Fund. The RCHF replaces the former Regional Museums Policy, and broadens its scope to include potential support for performing arts venues.