St James Theatre celebrations

Join us as we celebrate the re-opening of St James Theatre - home of the Royal New Zealand Ballet and the jewel in the crown of Wellington’s theatre scene.

After three years of significant earthquake strengthening and refurbishment, the St James Theatre is now fit for the next 100 years of arts and culture in Wellington.

This historic heritage treasure will once again bring dance, drama, opera, comedy, and music to Wellingtonians - and to celebrate, we’re hosting a series of fun, free events for the whole whānau to enjoy. 

Theatre district celebration

Āhea | When Friday 1 July, 5.30pm-10pm
Ki hea | Where St James Theatre | View on Google Maps | Accessibility
Te utu | Cost Free
There will be a projection on the St James Theatre façade, and Wellington’s vibrant theatre district will be lit up!

St James public Open Day and evening celebration

Āhea | When Saturday 2 July, 10am-8pm (lights on until 10pm)
Ki hea | Where St James Theatre | View on Google Maps | Accessibility
Te utu | Cost Free
Tours of the St James, performances, a Street Party, and more. Plus, BATS Theatre, Circa Theatre, Hannah Playhouse and Te Auaha will also be opening their doors for behind-the-scenes tours.

For information about traffic management, parking restrictions and public transport disruptions, check our street event road closures page.

Programme

10am-4pm: Public St James Open Day – tours hosted by performers from Slightly Isolated Dog.

Tour groups of up to 15 people will depart from the St James foyer approximately every 15 minutes. Exit will be back onto Courtenay Place.

12pm-4pm: You are also invited to take a look behind-the-scenes at BATS Theatre, Circa Theatre, Hannah Playhouse, and Te Auaha.

5.30pm: Street Parade of performers from other theatres to St James Theatre.

6pm-8pm: Closed-off Street Party outside the St James:

5.30pm: Taiko drummers on the St James Theatre balcony herald the party opening
5.32pm: Performers parade from around the theatre district to outside the St James
6pm: Party outside the St James commences. Hosted by stand-up comic Sameena Zehra
6pm: Hiwa/Kapa Haka
6.12pm: Wellington Opera
6.21pm: Hoot’n’Annies
6.38pm: Footnote Dance
6.48pm: Shivam Dance Academy Bollywood Performers
7.02pm: Crash Bandihoot
7.19pm: Orchestra Wellington
7.28pm: Chris Crowe (excerpt “STARS” from Les Miserables)
7.33pm: Colossal (excerpt from Biggest Little Circus)
7.49pm: Batucada
8pm: Ends