2010 Laureates announced — 03.11.10

The Arts Foundation is proud to announce and congratulate the 2010 Laureate Award recipients: Stuart Devenie, Gareth Farr, Leon Narbey, John Parker and Michael Parmenter. The Awards were presented in Dunedin on 2 December 2010.

The 2010 Laureates were announced in Dunedin on 2 November.  In the words of Kristen Gillespie, one of the people who cracked the Laureate riddle:

1.       The Robbers looked mean and their horses did whinny The cleric on board was young Stuart Devenie

2.       A potter by trade and designer of sets John Parker's my guess, please tell me it's yes.

3.       A footstep Man or a really sharp shot Leon Narby's the answer I hope ... is it not?

4.      Number 4 shines so brightly, a real superstar One Gareth (also Lilith) from the Family of Farr

5.       A bold choreographer of fabulous dance The name Michael Parmenter is my very last chance 

Stuart Devenie MNZM (Actor)
Stuart’s theatrical and television career stretches back to his first performance as Mr Dungbeetle in The Insect Play at age twelve in Hastings.  During his career as an actor, he has played leads in many well loved plays and television dramas.  He was a founding member of Circa Theatre in Wellington and has been an Associate Director at The Court Theatre in Christchurch and also an Artistic Director at Centrepoint Theatre in Palmerston North.  As well as being a leading stage performer, he has had roles in numerous television dramas, is one of the country’s top voice-over artists and has directed a number of plays.

Gareth Farr (Composer/percussionist)
Gareth works were included in four events at the1996 New Zealand International Festival of the Arts, kick-starting his career as a dedicated freelance composer.  Since then, his music has been heard or especially commissioned for high-profile events including the 50th anniversary of the New Zealand Symphony, the opening of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa and the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney.  He has composed for the concert chamber, for dance, theatre and television and also the Royal New Zealand Ballet who toured the country with The Wedding, featuring a score by this artist.  His alter ego Lilith Lacroix, has performed at venues in New Zealand and overseas, to sold-out houses, and has even won a fashion award at the Trentham Races.

Leon Narbey (Cinematographer)
Leon Narbey is a master cinematographer recognised in New Zealand and internationally for his beautiful, artistic and intelligent camerawork.  A sculpture student at art school, specialising in light/sound installations, his work is distinguished by an aesthetic feel for the colour, light, movement and formal composition of every frame.  He has produced many of the finest and most memorable images in New Zealand film.  Some definitive films he has worked on as cinematographer, include: Desperate Remedies, Whale-Rider and No. 2.  He has also worked on political and visual arts documentaries, short films and television dramas.  His own feature film Illustrious Energy, won numerous awards for the poetic and visually stunning portrayal of Chinese goldminers experiences in the 1860s Central Otago landscape.   

John Parker (Potter/Theatre designer)
John Parker began his career in pottery aged 19, learning skills through evening classes with Margaret Milne, helping build a kiln and joining potters' cooperatives.  Through his subsequent work and international connections, he helped form the direction ceramics has taken in New Zealand.  His work has been exhibited around the world and is held in many collections.  He now exhibits around three solo exhibitions annually within New Zealand, and many local and international group shows.   His ceramics have won a number of awards and he has received numerous commissions. While developing his interest in ceramics, he also became involved in theatre design, undertaking design briefs for theatre, ballet and musicals.  Credits are numerous including a long history of designing for the Auckland Theatre Company. 

Michael Parmenter MNZM, MCPA (Choreographer)
Michael Parmenter developed his dance skills in New Zealand and overseas.  He studied and danced with Erick Hawkins in New York and Min Tanaka in Japan.   He has created a wide range of dance-works, from innovative solo and duo shows to full-length pieces for the opera-house stage.  He has choreographed many of these for his own Commotion Company, in addition to numerous works for the Royal New Zealand Ballet and Footnote Dance.  He is also recognised as a teacher of distinction and an engaging and challenging writer and speaker.  In recent years he has been developing one of the distinctive features of his choreography - intricate partner dancing - into two partner-improvisation forms, Piloting and TACTICS, which are expanding the performance skills of New Zealand contemporary dancers.  Early this year he was named a Distinguished Alumni of Auckland University and appointed to the position of Adjunct Professor of UNITEC Department of Performing Arts. 

Special thanks to this year's panellists: Elizabeth Caldwell, Colin McColl, Deborah Shepard, Anne Rowse and Jack Body.

Special thanks also to our major partner the Lion Foundation, TVNZ 7 for preparing the artist vignettes, to Origin Design for an innovative new invitation idea, Service-Print, Eleven PR, the and to the Southern Trust for their support.

A series of short programmes on each of the 2010 Laureate Recipients will feature on TVNZ 7 in March 2011.

Many thanks to Jenny Bornholdt for writing the 'riddle', which provided an opportunity for anyone receiving an invitation, and readers of Facebook and our Update service to guess the five, new Laureates.

Thanks also to Kate Mead for interviewing the recipients in Dunedin. Excerpts from these interviews will be placed on our website in the near future.

Laureate Award announcement on TV1

The 2010 Laureate Awards were held in the Glenroy Centre, Dunedin. 
Event images below by Emily Hlavac-Green.