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Kiwis to celebrate

NEW Zealand celebrates National Pavilion Day today with performances by some of the country's most exciting young artists at the Expo Center at 5pm and 8pm.

Brilliant young Wellington-born soprano Aivale Cole, the Footnote dance company, Moana Maniapoto and Tribe and the NZTrio will be featured.

Director Dilys Grant said the cultural performance program would present a "positive and sophisticated contemporary image" of the country and its people.

Cole is the winner of numerous awards and won last year's Lexus Song Quest. She is already establishing an international reputation and is acknowledged as one of the most exciting singers New Zealand has produced.

The Footnote Dance Company, under the directorship of dance icon Dierdre Tarrant, are a group of contemporary dancers, based in Wellington. They will perform "Purlieu," especially commissioned for the Expo and choreographed by Malia Johnston, to music composed by Eden Mulholland.

The work explores the preciousness and precariousness of small spaces - a theme relevant to the Expo theme of "Better City, Better Life."

Kiwi legend has it that the god Tane separated his parents, the Sky and the Earth, to create the world. This Maori creation story is presented in the pavilion themed "Cities of Nature: Living Between Land and Sky."

The wedge-shaped, 2,000-square-meter pavilion extends the story into a three-act play covering the plaza, the interior and the roof garden.

Visitors are taken through a day in the life of a composite New Zealand city, starting from the sea, moving through the suburbs, the city center and out toward the mountains.

The New Zealand Pavilion is in Zone B, near the Malaysia and Cambodia pavilions.


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