Category Archives: Events

Events of an SF/F/H Nature

Classic SF Films at Stardome

Our friends at Stardome are back with another season of classic SF films. It kicks off 28 September and runs until mid December.

Films are shown against the night sky in the planetarium. Free popcorn with every ticket!

Dates and titles:
28 September 8pm: Moon
19 October 8pm: Close Encounters of the Third Kind
26 October 8pm: The Fly
2 November 8pm: Arrival
9 November 8pm: Ad Astra
16 November 8pm: Looper
30 November 8pm: Sunshine
7 December 8pm: The Terminator
14 December 8pm: Armageddon

Tickets are $15 for adults and $12 for seniors/students. Half price for members.

Need That Local Natcon Fix (another go)?

So, there isn’t a New Zealand national SF/F convention this year. There will be an event for the Sir Julius Vogel awards – look at our previous post for details. But what if you want that full natcon experience? Our fannish neighbours to that west are having one – Conflux 16 is the Australian natcon for 2022. It is being held 30 Sept – 3 Oct in Canberra.

This isn’t the first time they have tried to hold this event.  They should be applauded for their persistence.

You wouldn’t be traveling new ground for Kiwis. Your humble scribe has been to 5 Confluxes – they are a hugely enjoyable experience. And I’m not the only one to have made this trans-Tasman trip by any means – why don’t you consider adding to our numbers.

Hawke’s Bay Readers & Writers Festival

Join Gareth Ward to celebrate the launch of Tarquin the Honest: The Hand of Glodd, a comic fantasy adventure featuring the universe’s most honest wizard and his sandwich scoffing friend.

We thought we would lead with the punchline this time. There is the launch of a fantasy YA (we think) novel at the Hawke’s Bay Readers & Writers Festival. As usual we look through these events to find genre events – this is what we found. We also found a D&D event straight afterwards.

In case you are wondering about Gareth’s genre credentials, he did win the 2018 Sir Julius Vogel Award for Best Youth Novel.

This is all part of the Hawke’s Bay Arts Festival. Check it out – the front page of their web site features big time SF fan Che Fu.

Costumiers’ Fantasy Masquerade Ball weekend

We only just heard about this and it starts tonight 15th July! (with a second part tomorrow)

In the interest of getting this posted quickly we won’t put the detail, but if this title interests you at all – here is the link to the main site. Click the link to the event.

Two things to note – you have to be in costume to attend and it is in Rotorua.

Michael Hurst in The Golden Ass

Classical era fantasy theatre NOT in Auckland. 25 venues around the country are hosting Michael Hurst’s one man show The Golden Ass all through July.

Some details…it sounds like fantasy to us…
Freely adapted from the notorious original by Apuleius, this brand new solo show is the story of Lucius – a young man driven by sexual desire and insatiable curiosity who is accidentally transformed into a donkey. Uh-oh!

What follows is a fantastical series of misadventures in a wicked world of witches, bandits, virgins, cultists, slaves, circuses, soldiers, pastry-cooks, prostitutes and priests.

Marvellously, sidesplittingly ridiculous, The Golden Ass is the original donkey show, inspiring such literary giants as Shakespeare, Boccaccio, Cervantes, Rabelais and Keats. It remains today a powerful plea for empathy in a world gone mad.

Zombie Apocalypse

More theatre in July. The Best Café In The World is being offered by Basement Theatre Auckland on 19 – 23 Jul.

This is the event spiel from the event entry on their web site – tickets are online only.
It’s been 3 months since the zombie apocalypse began in New Zealand. Jayden, an optimistic young barista, tries to maintain a normal life, serving up his popular coffee to the remaining survivors. When a growing herd of dangerous zombies threatens to overrun the Café, Jayden and his friends are faced with a difficult decision – barricade themselves inside the cafe or abandon the cafe to join up with other survivors.

Beam Me Up

Covert Theatre in Ponsonby is running a Trek themed comedy show on July 21st / 28th.

This is the blurb from their web site:

Calling all Trekkies. Come and enjoy the brand new show from the Covert Theatre. It’s time to boldly go on a comedy adventure that’s out of this world.

This show explores the final frontier of comedy and is highly illogical as it is highly hilarious. Book your seat now before you miss out!

The site also mentions free entry if you come dressed in costume – you might want to check the conditions.

NZISF NanoFest

We found a few things that might possibly be of interest to fans at the New Zealand International Science Festival Nanofest 2022. Its being held in Dunedin over the next two weekends.

If you want to find things of fannish interest, have a scroll through this content from the ODT. Anybody for simulating an meteor impacts, building popsicle stick bombs or VR gaming?

A couple of things we noted about ourselves as we recorded this…

We do rather focus on artist events rather more than science ones. Its probably valid, but its also important to keep our outlook wide.

When was the last time we reported something from Dunedin? More stuff from the South Island please.

SFFANZ Mini Science Fiction Convention

SFFANZ have announced a new date for the One-day event! Save the date for Saturday August 13th.

You can sign up for the event at this link.

The full statement is reproduced below but the tldr is you need to sign up by July 30th to determine whether the event can go ahead in person or pivot to virtual.

We are pleased to announce that we will be hosting the SFFANZ AGM and presenting the Sir Julius Vogel awards physically on Saturday, August 13th, 2022 at the West Plaza Hotel, Wellington, New Zealand.

This day will be an opportunity for us to get together and build community spirit again after a long time apart. It will also be a chance for you to tell us what you want for fandom in New Zealand.

We understand that COVID-19 is still causing a lot of nervousness and fear in terms of getting together, and we will work to ensure we’re as safe as we can be while still getting together to have fun.

Details about the SFFANZ AGM, which will be held as part of the day, will be out shortly. Please note you’ll need to be an SFFANZ member to vote at the AGM. You can find details about joining SFFANZ at

One of the things we will be discussing after the AGM is planning future conventions -specifically 2023 and 2024. If you have ever thought you’d like to run a con, the SFFANZ board is happy to chat with you about what’s involved. There is seed fund money available to assist you with making bookings, etc. You’re not alone, there is support, and we can help you make it happen.

In order to make the SFFANZ one-day event happen, we need to know who’s coming – and the sooner the better.

So the sooner we know you’re coming, the more likely this event will happen. If we cannot get enough people in person, we may have to run a virtual event.

Please share information about this event as widely as you want to. The more the merrier. This is not just a day for SFFANZ members, but for all members of our community to get together and remember why we like to do that.

We will also be hosting small panel events prior to the beginning of the AGM and the SJV ceremony. The programme for the day will be advised once we have an idea of numbers. There will be one stream, so events will try to be of general interest to fans.

The panel events are open to all registered attendees, the SFFANZ AGM is open to all, but only SFFANZ members may vote. The SJV ceremony is open to all to attend.

There is no cost to attend, although any donations will be gratefully received.

As the country is in ORANGE setting, we encourage the wearing of masks when participating in the one-day event. The hotel’s policy is that masks are encouraged in communal areas of the hotel.

We are aware of the needs of our hearing-impaired members, and will take steps to ensure they’re able to participate as far as we’re able.

Please RSVP no later than Saturday, July 30th, 2022.

Auckland Writers Festival 2022

It’s worth repeating – we have an odd attitude towards the Writers Festival. Every year, covid notwithstanding, they put together a great programme of literary events. And every year, for this news blog, we scan through programme looking for genre items – any genre actually, not just ours. To be fair, we usually do find one or two, but it does always seem a bit token in nature.

However, the tokens are usually really high quality. For example, this year we have Elizabeth Knox and Lee Murray in event 86 Frankenstein’s Children.

Its a free event! Why don’t you head to the Aotea Centre on 18 Aug and support Lee and Elizabeth. It should be a fascinating discussion and if we get a good crowd along it will show the event organisers that genre based events are popular and there should be more of them!

Badjelly The Witch – Live On Stage

Do you want to take your kids to something that touches on fantasy and will be fun for you too? How about Badjelly The Witch performed live on stage?

It is being performed in July in Takapuna and Mangere. You can get all the info on Eventfinda for Mangere or here for Takapuna – scroll down a bit for details including a costume parade.

In the same vein, a reminder that the Wizard of Oz is on this month in Orewa.

SJV Awards Ceremony and One-Day Event

SFFANZ is pleased to announce it will hold a one-day event on Saturday, June 25, 2022 at West Plaza Hotel, 110 Wakefield Street, Wellington.

While planning is still preliminary, it’s expected the day will start with meet and greet, followed by panels. The SFFANZ AGM will be held at 2pm, followed by a planning session for the next New Zealand national convention.

The Sir Julius Vogel Awards for 2022 will be presented in the evening.

Registration for the day is free and open to all fans, but only members of SFFANZ may vote at the AGM. Click join SFFANZ for details on joining the organisation. Any donations to SFFANZ on the day will be gratefully received.

Although its free, we do need to know numbers – you can register your attendance using this form

There are more details on the main announcement page. Expect it to be updated over time.

More May the 4th plus Werewolf

Another may the 4th event (sigh), this time in Wellington. Plus if you look further down there is info about a Horror event/game in Nelson.

May the Fourth Be With You: A Star Wars Stand-Up Spectacular
The Fringe Bar, 26 Allen Street, Wellington, Wednesday 4 May 2022 7:30pm – 9:15pm.
Here is a link and the following is a bit of the blurb.

Join us for International Star Wars Day with “May the Fourth Be With You: A Star Wars Stand-Up Spectacular!” as comedians and variety performers come together to celebrate (or denigrate, in one case) the beloved franchise. We make a solemn promise to George Lucas that no intellectual property will be used (especially nothing from the pretentious prequels. Yeah, I said it!)

Werewolf – Nelson
Fairfield House, 48 Van Diemen St, Nelson
Friday 6 May 2022 7:30pm and Saturday 7 May 2022 7:30pm
Again, here is a link and some blurb.

A thrilling new live experience from Binge Culture, Werewolf feels almost like a game by daylight – but takes on a whole new life when plunged into the night. Are you paying attention?

Inspired by the classic game of deception, Werewolf features a chilling sound design and a unique immersive performance format – where the audience can participate as much or as little as they want. However you decide to play it, everyone becomes part of a makeshift community coming together to make it through the night. What is hiding in the darkness that is making everyone so nervous? You must pay attention.

May the 4th (and the 13th)

Star Wars fans (well some of them*) think that May 4th is a good date to celebrate their fandom. Stardome agree and are putting on three special planetarium shows to mark International Star Wars Day.

The info says:
Stormtroopers from the 501st Legion will be in attendance to patrol the event on the lookout for Rebel scum – but if you use your Jedi mind tricks you may able to get them to pose for photos. You’ll then be treated to a special show exploring the planets of Star Wars inside the planetarium, voyaging across a galaxy far, far away. Everyone is welcome, even if you’ve gone to The Dark Side. Plus, dress up as your favourite Star Wars character and you’ll be in to win some epic prizes!

Horror fans tend to prefer Friday the 13th to celebrate their fandom – May also has one of those. Spookers is also planning an event.

It’s hard to wake up from a nightmare if you aren’t even asleep. On Friday 13th of May, Spookers will bring your nightmares to LIFE! Think Slenderman, The Babadook, fast moving shadow figures, paralysis demons, chainsaw rearing cannibals and The Bent Neck Lady. What do you see in your nightmares? To really get into the theme, come dressed up in your pajamas!

*Not all Star Wars fans think its a good idea basing a celebration on a bad pun. Just remember that George Lucas’ birthday is on the 14th of May. Please remember to wish him a happy birthday – may the force…

Fantasy Music in Auckland

Kick off June in Auckland with a pair of concerts associated with major fantasy film franchises.

The Magical Music of Harry Potter
1 Jun 2022 – Kiri Te Kanawa Theatre, Aotea Centre
A one-of-a-kind film and music experience: The Magical Music of Harry Potter is a unique and enchanting evening where original actors, star soloists, a choir and an orchestra bring the boy wizard’s world to life! The programme includes soundtracks by four-time Academy Award winner John Williams, Nicholas Hooper, Patrick Doyle and Golden Globe winner Alexander Desplat. The evening becomes truly spellbinding with illusions from Rob Lake, one of the world’s leading magicians, featured on America’s Got Talent and Disney’s Cruise Line.

The Lord Of The Rings And The Hobbit – The Concert
June 2nd – Kiri Te Kanawa Theatre, Aotea Centre
The hobbits are coming! Celebrate the 20th anniversary of Peter Jackson’s magnificent films and bring to life the legendary world of hobbits, elves and orcs in a unique concert experience with a symphonic orchestra, choir and star guests. From the ominous sounds of Mordor and the shrill attack of the black riders, to the beautiful lyrical melodies of the Elves – almost 100 performers will take you on a fantastic journey with the most popular tunes from the ‘Lord of the Rings’ and ‘The Hobbit’. Featuring The Orchestra & Choir of the Shire, plus guests from the films.

Space Race

From time to time we post Space related events here. We know that Space isn’t strictly SF related but there is crossover interest. In fact space travel stopped being purely fiction and started becoming reality in 1961 when Yuri Gagarin went into orbit. Stardome are celebrating the anniversary of that occasion with an event:

Yuri’s Night: Celebrating the Exploration of the Cosmos
Stardome Observatory & Planetarium, 670 Manukau Rd, One Tree Hill Domain, Royal Oak, Auckland
Tuesday 12 April 2022 (four time slots available)

While we are here in Space, the active folks in the Wairarapa are holding an Easter Space event

Under the Stars Easter Space Race
Waihinga Martinborough Community Centre, Texas St, Martinborough
Sunday 17 April 2022 10:00am – 11:30am

Rocky Horror Dinosaur Star

A couple of activities in the provinces for you…

This upcoming weekend and the one following (Mar 20-21 and 26-27), The Amazing Dinosaur Discovery is in Masterton. There are a bunch of various activities including Robotic Raptors!!!!

If that isn’t your thing then the Wairarapa is also offering, for the more astral-minded, Autumn Equinox, Music & Telescope as well as Star Safari.

Or if that isn’t your thing, across the other side of the island in New Plymouth in early April (8th & 9th) there is a The Rocky Horror Picture Show event. Not just a screening but an interactive experience with a shadow cast and a props package. This is part of OUTfest Taranaki 2022.

Middle-Earth Costume Trail

If you are in Wellington during the summer you can get a close look at a bunch of props and costumes from The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. This exhibition “Journey to Middle-Earth” is part of Weta’s celebration of the 20th anniversary of the films.

You can read more on Stuff and the Wellington NZ site has a list of locations. You can get a physical map at any of the locations. The exhibition runs until the end of March.

Aotearoa New Zealand Festival of the Arts

As you probably know, we like scan through festival progamme listings looking for things relevant to our SF/F/H genre community. It can be dispiriting at times. But then we have something like this. The Aotearoa New Zealand Festival of the Arts, in Feb/Mar next year in Wellington, has a bunch of genre related items for you to check out. Following are a list we found after a quick look through, but it almost certainly isn’t all. So check out the full list of items to see what else is on. Note we have mentioned a few of these before in a standalone context, but all these are festival item versions.

Horizons - with Prof Brian Cox
Destination Mars – From the makers of APOLLO 13: Mission Control
N.K. Jemisin – in conversation with Elizabeth Knox
Another Universe – alternate history as spoken word art
Whiti Hereaka with Cassie Hart – talking about Cassie’s new book
Nalini Singh and Steff Green – in discussion with Cassie Hart
Books in the Time of the Pandemic – including Octavia Cade
Life on Mars – more Octavia Cade, Cassie Hart and Nalini Singh
Life on Mars – Australian Edition
Tania Roxborogh – 2021 Margaret Mahy Book of the Year author

Terror-Fi Film Festival

Seriously, how did we not hear about this before today?!!! The Terror-Fi Film Festival kicks off in Wellington tonight (Wednesday), before heading to Christchurch next week. It is billed as New Zealand’s annual celebration of sci-fi, fantasy, horror and cult cinema.

Wellington – The Roxy: 27-31 October
Christchurch – Alice Cinemas: 4-7 November
Auckland – The Capitol: 1-5 December (subject to Covid status)

We apologise for not telling you sooner – we only just spotted the Stuff article about it. If we haven’t posted about about things like this, chances are we don’t know about it – you can let us know on the main news site.