Māori musicians headline country's only major New Year’s festival

By Te Ao - Māori News

Six60, L.A.B, KORA, and Fat Freddy’s Drop are just a handful of local talent taking the stage over the next three days at this year's sold out Rhythm and Alps festival in Wanaka, South Island.

While other festivals like Bay Dreams and Rhythm and Vines have pulled the plug on their events due to traffic light system requirements like vaccine passports and social distancing, organizer Alex Turnbill says he's confident he can host the event safely.

"We’re representing the other festivals in the country and we’re very happy with that,” said Turnbill told Allied.

Turnbill says all attendees must be vaccinated and passes will be checked on arrival. Attendees have had to register their information prior to the event with an online system that prevents fraudulent activity such as using someone else’s pass.

"Your ticket has to match the vaccine pass name and you also have to show photo ID, so it’s a pretty foolproof system really."   

The three-day event is expected to inject some $10 Million into the wider Wanaka community, which has suffered from lack of visitors during the Covid-19 pandemic.