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An Ornament to The Town - The Band Rotunda In New Zealand

An Ornament to The Town - The Band Rotunda In New Zealand

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  • Mon 29 May ’17, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Tue 30 May ’17, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Wed 31 May ’17, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Thu 1 Jun ’17, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • Fri 2 Jun ’17, 10:00am – 5:00pm
  • View all sessions


National Library of New Zealand, 70 Molesworth Street, Thorndon, Wellington Show map


All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Free Admission


National Library

Band rotundas are an attractive feature of cities and towns across New Zealand. The popularity of brass band music led to some 100 rotundas being built from the 1880s to the 1930s - Wellington alone had six by the mid-1920s. Admired as civic 'ornaments', these elegant structures sheltered musicians while they performed, and projected their music out across parks, beaches and city streets. Rotundas also became platforms for public speeches, celebrations and protests.

This exhibition explores the unique heritage of the New Zealand band rotunda through photographs, plans, recordings and more. Because many rotundas have been destroyed over the years, now is a good time to renew our appreciation of this significant form of musical architecture.

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