Big street party to launch NZ Open

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Queenstown’s newest band has only been together a matter of weeks – but its musicians have built its repertoire over many years.
 
Events band Red consists of musicians who’ve played together in rock ‘n’ roll musicals in the resort. 

They’ve spent months getting under the skin of classic rock stars and perfecting performances of their songs for popular local productions such as California Dreamin’, London Calling, 27 and Rock ‘n’ Roll Suicide.
Only for it all to be over in a few nights. 

Now they’ve brought that experience to bear in Red – which performs as anything from a trio to a six-piece for events and corporate functions. 

Singer Charlotte Graf says: “Performing the songs is like putting on a nice piece of clothing you’ve not worn for a while. 

“That’s one thing about those shows – you work so hard to embody the piece, know it back to front. 

“Then it’s suddenly all over. You wish you could do it again and many tell us they want to hear those numbers again. So that’s what this band will provide.” 

Singer Graf is joined on vocals by Queenstown stage stalwart Margaret O’Hanlon – who penned and produced the productions. 

Ivan Hamilton plays the drums and sings, Mark Wilson is on keyboards, Matt Anthony on lead guitar and harmonica, and Nigel Hurst plays saxophone, rhythm guitar and sings. 

Their huge repertoire is focused on 60s, 70s and 80s rock music, with some relatively contemporary artists such as Amy Winehouse thrown into the mix. 

“Led Zeppelin and Janis Joplin are my favourite artists to perform as. They fit quite well into my vocal range,” Graf says. 

So well-known is the talent in the band, they’ve landed the launch of the NZ Open in Arrowtown as their first major public gig. It will be a street party centred on Buckingham Street. 

“I love the buzz around these events,” Graf says. 

Catch Red at the NZ Open welcoming party, Buckingham Street, Arrowtown, tonight from 6-10pm. Free admission