Artistic happenings lift spirits

Sharing music . . . Dunedin singer Sophie Morris performs for residents of Yvette Williams during a Random Acts of Art event last weekend. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

Lifting spirits and spreading kindness across Dunedin is the focus of a “special community engagement response” to Covid-19 from Theatreworks and Wow! Productions.

The Random Acts of Art (Raa!) project was the brainchild of Wow! member and Theatreworks director Cindy Diver, who set about creating “guerrilla art acts” in her local Macandrew Bay community during Dunedin’s Level 4 lockdown and in Level 3.

“Even though we have now gone back to new normal, our community still feels the anxiety and unsteadiness – especially our children,” Ms Diver said.

Wow! Productions board member and TheatreWorks director Cindy Diver displays the positive message badges being distributed free around Dunedin as part of the Random Acts of Art project. PHOTO: BRENDA

“We believe we can used random acts of art to make people smile, spread kindness, and help them to feel connected with each other.”

The Raa! project brings together a collective of about 40 performers, who present fun, fleeting and visual events in high foot traffic areas.

Recent events have included dinosaurs waving signs saying “We got this!” and “You are roarsome!”, a dinosaur being chased by a bar of soap in the central city, and Dunedin singer Sophie Morris giving socially distanced performances for rest-home and retirement village residents.

A pair of cheeky dinosaurs hold fun and encouraging signs during a recent Random Acts of Art event in Dunedin. PHOTO: SUPPLIED

The Raa! project is also keeping Dunedin cafes stocked up with free badges depicting humorous and hopeful images and messages.

Ms Diver said the project would continue for the next six months, both to spread joy and give professional local performers the chance to earn money through their craft.