Performing Arts

Whanganui High School offers a wide range of Performing Arts for students to participate in.

Students are able to challenge themselves in many different areas - Dance, Drama, Music, Stage Challenge, Productions, Kapahaka, Pasifika; or even as a combination of several of these activities.

School Representatives

Students representing Whanganui High School in any co- curricular activity are expected to positively uphold and enhance the ‘Life’ values of Whanganui High School whilst preparing for, participating in, or attending any event.

Whanganui High School representatives are bound by the Smoke, Drug, and Alcohol Free conditions under which all events are managed

Read the full criteria for representing Whanganui High School

Who's in charge?

HOF Performing & Visual Arts

Natalie Campbell

Contact Details


Photo:  Junior Dancers placed 1st at Dance NZ Made regionals 10/8/18.

Dance is a popular subject and is open to all year levels.  

Students who take dance are able to perform in a variety of performance evenings.

Dance also offers a range of performance opportunities outside of the classroom like Stagechallenge, Production, Dance 4 Asthma, and competitions.


Photo: WHS students competed in the annual SGCNZ University of Otago Sheilah Winn Shakespeare Festival, 8/4/18.

Drama is a popular subject at all year levels at Whanganui High School.

There is also a very busy extra curricular programme running which inspires students to perform at a National level.

In addition to the bi-annual major school production, students have the opportunity to participate in the Sheilah Winn Shakespeare Festival, One Act Play Festival, Junior Production, Theatresports and many other Cultural events.


Kapa haka

Photo:  WHS Kapa Haka group performing at Pae Rangatahi Regional Kapa Haka Competitions held in Waitara, 21/6/18.

Kapa haka plays a vital role in the culture of our school. Our performance group called Kia Whaiora has performed creditably in both local and regional events and hold pride of place during the School's formal occasions.

The Roopu also lend all Māori Kaupapa in the school; including Waiata, Karakia and Pōwhiri.

Our students are ambassadors and role models within our community.

Kua tu te ropu kapahaka o Kia Whaiora i roto nga whakataetae huri noa i te motu, te rohe hoki, a ka tu rangatira i roto i nga kaupapa nui o te kura.


BRAD MANCER'S PROUD MOMENT - The ANZAC dawn service held at Anzac Cove in commemoration of the 103rd anniversary (2018) of Canakkale Land Battles on Gallipoli Peninsula, Turkey.  (Photo / Getty Images)

Outside of class time there's plenty of scope for those who wish to learn an instrument, join the School Choir, form their own Rock Band, or Chamber Music group.

A lot of students are involved in the School Production as singers and instrumentalists and they play an important role in ensuring that the show is a success.

The Choir is open to all age groups who wish to apply for an audition.
A highlight has been the three successful trips to Sydney to compete in the Australian International Music Festival where the choir has gained silver medals. 

Jazz Band
Membership is by invitation after auditions.

Music Lessons
The School offers Itinerant Music lessons for Violin, Cello, Clarinet, Saxophone, Guitar, Piano, Drums, Flute, Voice and Brass Instruments.

Chamber Music Contest
The annual Chamber Music Contest provides an opportunity for students of all levels and ages to form a group and enter the contest.

Students can also apply for a music pass to gain access to the recording studio and control room or one of the five well equipped practice rooms.


Photo: WHS Pasifika Group performing at Pasifika Fusion 2018, Regent on Broadway, Palmerston North on 4 & 5 July 2018.

Fanau Pasifika contributes a lively presence to the culture of our school.

Our students have the opportunity to become leaders while celebrating and expressing themselves through culture and language.

Pasifika students develop confidence through regional and local performance.

 2018 Pasifika Fusion

Well done to our Whanganui High School Pasifika group who performed at the Regent on Broadway in Palmerston North on 4 and 5 July at Pasifika Fusion 2018.

We are very proud of our Pasifika students and the tremendous effort they put in to preparing this performance.

Pasifika Fusion Facebook: 2018 Whanganui High School performance

youtube: Pasifika 2017 Cultural Performance Whanganui High School


Photo:  Rockquest band Regional WINNERS 2018 - 'THE REMNANT'  L>R; Chester Nevil (on drums, just out of shot), Tokarārangi Poa, Cypress Kani-Hurinui, Josh Waitai & Wiremu Rogan, 9/6/18.
Also winners of the Tangata Beats category!

Rockquest is an annual competition; students form Rock Bands or enter as a Solo/Duo Act.

The groups compose music, perform regionally and vie for a position in the National Finals.

WHS Regional winners: 2009
WHS Runner up: 2010
WHS Runner up: 2011
WHS Regional winners: 2015 'CONTRABAND' 
WHS Regional winners: 2016 'WHY VIBRATIONS'
WHS Regional winners: 2017 'STRAIGHT LACE'
WHS Regional winners: 2018 'THE REMNANT'


School Productions

Photo:  Junior Production 2018  'Once On This Island'

Every alternate year we stage a Major School Production and a Junior School Production:

2007 Major Production 'Blood Brothers'
2008 Junior Production 'Ernie's Incredible Illucinations'
2009 Major Production 'Urinetown - the Musical'
2010 Junior Production 'High School Musical'
2011 Major Production 'Guys and Dolls'
2012 Junior Production 'Fairytale High'
2013 Major Production 'Crazy For You'
2014 Junior Production 'The Rehearsal'
2015 Major Production 'Annie'
2016 Junior Production 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' 
2017 Major Production 'Rock of Ages'
2018 Junior Production 'Once On This Island'

* Click here to watch the video 'Rock of Ages' *

* Click here to watch the video 'Once On This Island' *

Stage Art (previously Stage Challenge)


Stage Challenge offers a platform for students to develop self-belief, confidence and resilience, while upholding key values of attending school, working towards realistic education goals, and staying fit and healthy without tobacco, alcohol and other drugs.

Our Stage Challenge were winners of Regional Competition in 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2012, 2014 & 2016 and Stage Art in 2018!
National Competition winners Stage Challenge in 2004 & 2016 & Stage Art in 2018!!
Placed Nationally in 2009.

WHS - 2016 STAGE CHALLENGE NATIONAL WINNERS '29 Below' depicting the Pike Mine Disaster. '29 Below' received an additional seven awards for aspects such as stage use, set design, costume and drama excellence.

** Click here to watch the video '29 Below' **

WHS - 2018 STAGE ART NATIONAL WINNERS 'Uncovering Alice' depicting the mistreatment of children in Lake Alice Psychiatric Hospital, Rangitikei, New Zealand.

** Click here to watch the video 'Uncovering Alice' **

The following images are from 'Uncovering Alice' & '29 Below'