Icon recipient achievements 2013 — 29.07.13

While celebrating the 2013 Icon Award recipients, we also acknowledge the significant achievements this year of current and previously awarded recipients.

  • Janet Frame's Gorse is Not People gained a place on the top ten NZ Fiction bestsellers list for the whole of 2012.  Jane's previously un-published novel was released in November 2013;
  • Self-Portrait, by Marti Friedlander, with Hugo Manson, will be published by Auckland University Press, Mid-October.   In Self-Portrait, Marti tells her story for the first time. As forthright and revealing in words as in her photographs, she tells of growing up in London orphanages, being Jewish, working in a Kensington photography studio, marrying a New Zealander and moving across the world to a challenging new country;

  • Maurice Gee appeared at the Auckland Writers & Readers Festival as the inaugural Honoured New Zealand Writer, an award conceived to celebrate New Zealand's most accomplished writers, their body of work and the immense contribution they have made to the literary landscape of New Zealand;

  • Sir Peter Jackson's film The Hobbit was credited for a spike in the number of international visitors to the country with 13% of tourists participating in a Hobbit-themed tourist activity. He has been named at number 55 in Forbes magazine's list of 100 most powerful celebrities;

  • Russell Kerr's classic production of Swan Lake is the centrepiece of the New Zealand Ballet's 60th birthday year season. A more fitting tribute to the Royal New Zealand Ballet's 60th anniversary than this stunning Swan Lake would be hard to imagine. It is choreographer Russell Kerr's fourth production [aged 86] and they get better every time. Fairfax News (July 2013);

  • Geoff Murphy's ground-breaking film Utu (a new cut) premiered at the 2013 Auckland and Wellington Film Festivals;

  • Dame Kiri Te Kanawa sang the British national anthem at Buckingham Palace opening celebrations for the 60th anniversary of the Queen's coronation in July. She is joining the cast of Downton Abbey for its next season;

  • Sir Miles Warren gifted Ohinetahi, his world-renowned house and garden in Canterbury, to the people of New Zealand and he has been actively involved with the Christchurch rebuild.  Sir Miles Warren's vision for Christ Church Cathedral is to rebuild it as it was supposed to be, but never was. He has revealed his design for the earthquake-damaged church, including the all-wooden interior of the original design by 19th century architect George Gilbert Scott.  Sir Miles suggests rebuilding in wood using 21st century technology to create an elegant and spacious contemporary Gothic interior;
  • Dame Gillian Weir performed her final public solo organ recital at Westminster Cathedral at the end of 2012 (the last as a world-renowned concert organist in her remarkable career spanning 48 years with some 2000 performances in the most prestigious international venues and with many of its greatest orchestras) and continues her work with master-classes, adjudicating and some recording;

  • Ans Westra reacquainted herself with those who she photographed up to 50 years ago in a Full Circle tour and she has published a new book Our Future Nga Tau ki Muri which shows an often damning picture of what the New Zealand landscape has become;

  • Cliff Whiting: He Toi Nuku He Toi Rangi, a biography of Cliff Whiting celebrating his work and service will be published on 15 November.