The Bone Feeder

COMPOSER:Gareth Farr LIBRETTO:Renee Liang

World Premier Season. Commissioned by Auckland Arts Festival, presented in association with New Zealand Opera.

23 Mar - 26 Mar 2017

Slip through the gateway between East and West, reality and myth, past and present and encounter music and a story never before experienced on a New Zealand stage.

The Bone Feeder is a new opera, beautifully and imaginatively scored by Gareth Farr and written by poet and playwright Renee Liang, that explores the mysteries, traumas and gifts of migration, home and belonging.

A young New Zealand Chinese man searching for his roots is guided by a magical cicada and Māori Ferryman. He crosses to 'the other side', where ghosts reveal secrets of love, loss and betrayal. His attempt to uncover his ancestor's bones disturbs the earth and ultimately, threatens his life.

Directed by Sara Brodie, the opera takes Gareth Farr’s unique combination of Western, Māori and Chinese instruments to create a sweeping, beautiful and playful piece of music sung in English, Māori and Cantonese.

The Bone Feeder is inspired by the story of the SS Ventnor, a lost part of NZ's history. It’s grounded in the experiences of early Chinese settlers and their interactions with Pākehā and Māori.


COMPOSER Gareth Farr

LIBRETTO Renee Liang

DIRECTOR Sara Brodie

CONDUCTOR Peter Scholes


Find out more about The Bone Feeder and Auckland Arts Festival at