Kōrero: Young people and the arts

Whārangi 1. Arts participation

Ngā whakaahua me ngā rauemi katoa o tēnei kōrero

Creative arts participation by people under 30 is significant. Research commissioned by Creative New Zealand showed that in 2011, 36% of 15–29 year olds made or presented art more than 12 times in the previous 12 months. This was higher than older age groups. The same year 80% of 10–14 year olds participated in at least one arts activity outside of school, while 87% attended at least one arts event.

Too much art

In 2011 only 6% of 10–14 year olds were involved in more arts activities than they wanted to be. Reasons included having to do arts activities at school (61%) and parents making them do arts activities (15%). Of those, 18% said they enjoyed arts, but wanted to do them less.


The New Zealand Curriculum includes four arts disciplines: dance, drama, music and visual arts. (Creative writing is part of the subject English.) Years 1–8 include all four disciplines; years 9–10 include at least two; and students in years 11–13 can choose to specialise in one or more arts subjects.

Many schools put on shows every year and maintain orchestras and bands, which are often the basis of inter-school competitions. Programmes like JUMP JAM, which mix exercise and creative expression, are popular in primary and intermediate schools.

Dance, drama, music and other arts classes are available in most towns and cities after school and during weekends. Students attend regular classes and participate in annual shows for family and friends.

Workshops and mentoring

Arts agencies and organisations offer mentoring and workshop services for young people. The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and regional orchestras run school programmes and put on special concerts for schools. The Royal New Zealand Ballet as well as other dance and theatre companies have similar arrangements.

The New Zealand Book Council’s Writers in Schools programme takes local writers into schools through the country, while Playmarket arranges for playwrights to visit school drama classes.

Me pēnei te tohu i te whārangi:

Kerryn Pollock, 'Young people and the arts - Arts participation', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/mi/young-people-and-the-arts/page-1 (accessed 27 May 2024)

He kōrero nā Kerryn Pollock, i tāngia i te 22 Oct 2014