New Zealanders everywhere are invited on Sunday 11 November to commemorate 100 years since the signing of the Armistice that ended the First World War in 1918.
The Government’s official programme of public events will take place in Wellington, with commemorative activities held by many communities across the country.
“The Armistice centenary events will remember the immense losses endured throughout the war,” Director of the First World War Centenary Programme WW100, Sarah Davies says.
“They will also look to recapture the celebration and hope that swept many parts of New Zealand that day.
“As the final commemoration of the First World War Centenary, Armistice offers us an opportunity to connect again as a community. We will take time to reflect on the past and our hopes for the future”.
National Ceremony, 10.45am
A 100-Gun Salute on the Wellington waterfront in front of Te Papa will start the ceremony. The firing is symbolically timed to finish at 11am when the guns fell silent 100 years ago.
The National Ceremony will then observe a two-minute silence at 11am, which will be broken by a fanfare of bells, sirens and horns across the city and harbour led by the carillon at Pukeahu.
He Wawā Waraki: Roaring Chorus 2018
The ceremony will culminate in a creative performance called He Wawā Waraki:Roaring Chorus 2018. This 20-minute piece will weave historic text, contemporary poetry, waiata, dance and music to evoke the energy, noise and emotion of the moment when war finally gave way to peace.
He Wawā Waraki:Roaring Chorus 2018 is directed by choreographer Malia Johnston and includes an original score by composer Eden Mulholland and a specially commissioned poem from Airini Beautrais. It features performances from Jennifer Ward-Lealand, Maisey Rika, Supertonic, Hau Manu ki Te Papa and a 50-strong cast of dancers and drummers.
Armistice Beacon and live-stream
People everywhere can connect with the centenary by submitting messages of hope, peace or remembrance via text or online, which will be displayed on the Armistice Beacon—a five-metre high digital installation at Pukeahu. The Armistice Centenary National Ceremony will also be live-streamed via the WW100 Facebook page and YouTube channel.
Sunset Ceremony, 7.30pm
The programme of events will end with a Sunset Ceremony, led by New Zealand Defence Force. This will be a tribute to all New Zealanders who served in the First World War as well as their families and all others impacted by the war. The New Zealand Defence Force Band and military ceremonial personnel bearing the 21 New Zealand Defence Force Regimental, Corps and Unit Colours, Banners, Guidon and Standards will take part.
Wellington City Council is also organising a programme of music performances at Pukeahu on the afternoon of 11 November to acknowledge the Armistice centenary.
Details of Armistice centenary events happening around New Zealand are listed at ww100.govt.nz/armistice-events