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Walker: ‘I choose you’ Carterton

Stan Walker is giving a one-off concert in Carterton this April.

The multi-award-winning Maori singer will perform the youth-focused event at Carterton Events Centre, where the audience will be treated to exclusive material – including songs from his new album ‘All In’.

It’ll be the first time Walker has performed his recent songs with a full, six-piece band, which will also provide backup on songs from ‘Te Arohanui’, his first album sung entirely in te reo Maori.

Ka Pai Carterton has campaigned for several years to get Walker to perform in the region, and community facilitator Cimone Grayson said it’s exciting to have secured such a high-profile artist.

“We are tremendously proud to bring such an iconic young Maori role model to Wairarapa for this momentous event.

“Stan Walker’s message of perseverance and overcoming obstacles is one that all communities should be exposed to. We wish to inspire our rangatahi and all whanau to become the best version of themselves by sharing in Stan’s story.

“It has fabulous messaging. He’s a beacon for these young people.”

With a 500-person limit for the concert, Grayson said the tickets are being snapped up quickly.

During the concert, there’ll be a 20-minute pause for a Q and A session with the audience.

There will also be a series of community-led workshops throughout the weekend including singer/songwriter, kapa haka and dance workshops.

Walker will also do a private meet and greet at the Carterton Youth Village on Sunday.

Grayson said it’s special for other community organisations to support the event: “The moment they heard about this, they were so onboard.”

At Carterton district council’s full meeting on February 15, councillors said they are “thrilled” about Walker’s upcoming visit, and that the events centre will play host to the artist.

Mayor Ron Mark – who released an album of country covers titled ‘Never Give Up’ in 2019 – joked that he will “even offer him the chance to record with me” when Walker comes to town.

The concert’s supporting act will be Sandcastle, a band made of 10 Wairarapa-based musicians including Walker’s musical associate Jerome Lopa, and Ryan Cole.

Sandcastle band member Brian Bellumini said the band consists of established musicians from the region.

“We’ll play a mix of neo-soul, funk, New Orleans, and Latin among other things. It’s quite an exciting mix.

“It’ll be great when it all comes together.”

He said their band name started as a working title.

“We chose Sandcastle because it’s this thing you build up, but then it dissolves.”

    April 8 at Carterton Events Centre. Doors open at 5.30pm.

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Helen Holt
Helen Holt
Helen Holt is a reporter at the Wairarapa Times-Age and enjoys reporting on a variety of topics, regularly covering Wairarapa events, tourism, local businesses, and the occasional health story.

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