A Flat City

Impressions and experiences from Christchurch’s creative community following the February 2011 earthquakes.

A History of Student Radio

A four-part journey through 45 years of student radio in New Zealand.

A Short History of Jazz

A four part series guides listeners on an historical path, tracing the evolution of jazz from its beginnings in the early 1900s, up until the late 1950s.

Access All Areas

A backstage pass to current musical issues with seasoned industry insider Trevor Reekie, who dodges past security to get to the heart of industry trends and happenings.

Adventures in Musicland

Local music fanatics take us along on a personal pilgrimage to discover more about the musical roots and stories of a place, culture, or artist.

Afternoon Requests

Requests up to an hour long from Radio New Zealand Concert's vast CD collection or from some of our own recordings.


Get to know more about a special topic or interesting musician.

Around The World in 80 Tunes

International adventurers and DJs Nick Dwyer and Barnie Duncan shake up the preconceptions of “world music” by investigating existing sub genres and young producers the globe over.

Backstage at the Met

Paul Bushnell goes backstage at the New York Metropolitan Opera to find out how a production is staged.

BBC Proms 2014

BBC Proms 2014 will be broadcast in Music Alive at 8pm and weekday mornings at 10am bringing New Zealand listeners two months of many of the world’s greatest artists, composers, orchestras and ensembles across 92 concerts including four Last Night celebrations around the UK.

Beale Street Caravan

Live performances drawn from concerts recorded in the US for The Blues Foundation who are based in Memphis Tennessee.

Beauty Spot

Every weekday morning after the 8 o’clock news we play works with an emphasis on gentle mood and beautiful melody.

Beethoven reCYCLE

During 2013, Michael Houstoun gives a series of concerts for Chamber Music New Zealand in which he plays the complete cycle of 32 Piano Sonatas by Ludwig van Beethoven.


The Age of Enlightenment consists of Beethoven’s first six string quartets, written when he was 30. The title of the series refers to the graceful, classical elegance of the music, typical of that period in history.

Blue Smoke

An audio history of popular music recorded in New Zealand in the 1950s and early 1960s

Bowie's Waiata

On 23 November, 1983, shortly before his first concert in Wellington, David Bowie was invited to visit Takapuwahia Marae in Porirua.

Brian Eno

Thomas Goss gives an overview of the life and music of Brian Eno.

Brilliant Brass

Principal trombone of the NZSO David Bremner hosts a series looking at the brilliant world of brass.


A selection of shorter, popular classics that includes well-known opera arias and choruses.

CD Masters

Classic performances of mainstream repertoire from the back catalogue.

Classic Morning

Three hours of music with news and weather on the hour to keep you informed about what’s going on in the world.

Classical Chart

The top 10 selling classical albums for the week.

Composer of the Week

On Sunday at 9am we introduce the featured composer. Then every weekday morning we play a selection of the composer’s works. The introductory audio is also available on demand.

Composers on Camera

Thomas Goss explores how movies portray composers as lovers, heroes, spiritual figures, and even madmen.

David Bowie: The Odyssey of a Changeling

George Kay looks at Bowie’s career and music.

Day's End

Music for winding down at the end of the day.

Django Reinhardt - Guitar Hero

Steve Danby introduces Django Reinhardt, one of the first influential jazz figures to emerge from Europe.

Douglas: The Landscape of a New Zealand Composer

A 10-part series reflecting on Douglas Lilburn (1915-2001) through the eyes and ears of his friends, family and colleagues, marking the 10th anniversary of his death in June 2001.


Radio New Zealand's documentary covering the history of New Zealand's most iconic band - Split Enz.

Essential New Zealand Albums

Music critic Nick Bollinger presents a selection of essential New Zealand albums adapted from his book 100 Essential New Zealand Albums, published by Awa Press.

Expo Belle Epoque

In memory of Claude Debussy and Frederick Delius, both born 150 years ago, and in recognition of a time of phenomenal development, in the arts, sciences and social history we turned 22 August 2012 over to the era 1880-1914.

Extended Play: The Classic Flying Nun EPs

A series focusing on some of the “classic” EPs of the 1980s released by Flying Nun.

Flying Nun Records

One of the great Rock 'n' Roll stories, full of big personalities, high ideals, opportunities both seized and lost, and a soundtrack to die for because, in the end, (as in the beginning) Flying Nun is all about the music.

Gallipoli Songs

Composers were invited to set authentic Gallipoli texts to music.

George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

Elric Hooper and Des Wilson look at the life and work of GBS and in particular his views on music.

Gisborne International Music Competition 2011

Radio New Zealand Concert recorded the semifinal and final rounds of the Gisborne competition in December 2011. Here for your enjoyment are all the recorded performances.

Global Sounds

Take the chance to hear leading world music artists from all over the globe.

Grace Notes

Music to mirror the gentler start to the well-earned day of rest.

Hidden Treasures

Trevor Reekie takes you on a trip that seeks out musical gems from niche markets around the globe, the latest re-releases, and interesting sounds from the shallow end of the bit stream.

Houstoun and Chopin

New Zealand’s foremost pianist Michael Houstoun talks to Tim Dodd about his approach to playing the music of Fryderyk Chopin.

How hybrid? Global music mixes

How is globalisation influencing the way we think about music and ourselves?

How to Hear Classical Music

A guide to assist the understanding, interpretation and appreciation of classical music.

How Will Opera Survive?

The Future of Opera in the contemporary world of mass popular culture, digital technology and global financial crisis.

Hymns For Sunday Morning

A weekly selection of traditional and modern hymns.

Hymns On Sunday

A weekly selection of traditional and modern hymns.


Musicians have two minutes to describe themselves and their song.

Jazz Footprints

Exploring the full spectrum of this influential genre and its musicians.

Jazz on Concert

A series hosting all things Jazz.

Letters to Sibelius

A series of radio programmes in the form of letters from Marshall Walker to the Finnish composer Jean Sibelius.

Lexus Song Quest

New Zealand’s most prestigious contest for promising young opera singers.

Lilburn Lecture

The Lilburn Lecture is jointly organised by the Lilburn Trust and the Alexander Turnbull library. Named after the New Zealand composer who instigated the Archive of New Zealand Music within the Turnbull Library and established the Lilburn Trust, the lecture is held annually on Douglas Lilburn’s birthday, 2nd November. Speakers are invited to talk on a subject of their choosing about music and New Zealand.

Lili Kraus

Poets exalted, school children cheered and music-lovers hungrily devoured the post-war concerts given in NZ by Hungarian-born pianist Lili Kraus. Charlotte Wilson presents a tribute to the life and work of this remarkable woman.

Made in New Zealand

Music written and performed by New Zealanders.

Making Maestros

A three-part documentary series inside the 2011 NZSO Conductor Workshops tutored by Pietari Inkinen.

Matinee Idle

Phil O'Brien and Simon Morris present an afternoon of music and entertainment.

Maurice Till

Tim Dodd talks to the eminent New Zealand pianist about his early career.

Michael Hill International Violin Competition

The Michael Hill International Violin Competition aims to promote young violinists from all over the world who are launching their professional solo careers and are aspiring to establish themselves on the world stage.

Music 101

Music, interviews, live performances, behind the scenes, industry issues, career profiles, new, back catalogue, undiscovered, greatest hits, tall tales - with a focus on New Zealand/Aotearoa.

Music Alive

Live concerts featuring local and international artists.

Music and Dreams

Ryan Smith looks at some famous composers from different eras who lifted ideas and music straight out of their dreams.

Music for Life

Writer, scholar, Professor Emeritus of English and broadcaster Marshall Walker introduces the music he loves

Music in Braille

Lisette Wesseling explores Louis Braille’s adaptation of his six-dot reading and writing system for the blind to represent the language of music.

Music Is Sport

The science, psychology and sociology of bands and musicians in an attempt to understand this peculiar species of human being.

Music Migrations

Megan Collins presents a series on the music of migrant New Zealanders.

Music Through the Night

Music Through the Night keeps you company through the wee hours from midnight to 6.00am.


Music at Menlo is a California summer music festival. The 2012 season, Resonance, marked the festival's tenth anniversary

Musical Chairs

An occasional series profiling New Zealand musicians.

Musical Chairs with Roger Smith

Departing manager of Radio New Zealand Concert, Roger Smith shares some personal perspectives and favourite music with David Morriss.

New Horizons

An hour of rock/pop/country, focusing on a new release or two and placing these in the context of an artist's career.

New Zealand Festival 2014

Five concerts recorded at the New Zealand Festival 2014.

No Nukes: How NZ Music helped us Ban the Bomb

Marking the 25th anniversary of New Zealand's ground-breaking nuclear free legislation, 'No Nukes' highlights the role of Kiwi music and musicians in winning people over to the anti-nuclear cause.

NZCT Chamber Music Contest

The New Zealand Community Trust Chamber Music Contest, run by Chamber Music New Zealand, is the only nationwide chamber music competition for young musicians and composers.

NZSO Todd Young Composers Award

Selected young New Zealand composers have their works performed by the NZSO.

Opera On Sunday

Opera lays claim to Sunday evenings from 6 o’clock.

Podcast Classics

A monthly web-only feature, podcasting performances by New Zealand artists.

Recent Releases

A selection of recently released recordings.


Major New Zealand works are unlocked from the Radio New Zealand Concert archive and given a new life on air and on the web.

Ron and Zillah Castle: Their sweet compulsion

A story of poetry, pharmaceuticals, teaching, collecting and above all, music.

Round Midnight

Connecting the dots between jazz old and new and celebrating the work of some of the overlooked and unsung heroes of the jazz world.


Two hours of uplifting music for the spirit and soul.

Saturday Concert

Live and recorded concerts from New Zealand and around the world.

Saturday Night

Your requests, nostalgia and musical memories.

Settling the Score

An annual countdown of listeners' choices of best-loved classics.

Sound Lounge

A balance of hardcore avant garde, atmospheric soundscapes, up to the minute contemporary, early 20th Century and a touch of art pop.

South of Heaven: A History of New Zealand Extreme Metal

Incorporating sub-genres such as thrash metal, speed metal, black metal, death metal and doom metal, this music is much more than just Satan, gore, and loud guitars.


Anthonie Tonnon visits New Zealand’s most talked about places to see music.

Summer Sonic

Summer Sonic brings a range of features and documentaries, starting Thursday 26 December 2013

Summer Sounds

A summer hamper of musical goodies… retro jazz, live performances, nu grooves and vintage classics from New Zealand and afar.

The Art Of Jazz

"I don’t care if a dude is purple with green breath, as long as he can swing.” Miles said it. We stick to it.

The Beatles New Zealand Tour 1964

They shook up the world, and in 1964, the Beatles shook New Zealand.

The Big Sing

Highlights from the Big Sing Secondary Schools Choir Festival National Finale held in Dunedin.

The Blerta Years

BLERTA was formed 35 years ago and included some of the country's most talented musicians, actors, filmmakers, lighting technicians and their families. This documentary charts their history as they led a revolutionary charge in culturally challenged New Zealand.

The Critic's Chair

Drawing on the expertise of a range of reviewers, each week we check out the latest CD releases.

The Decker Years

Peter Shaw surveys the recorded performances from Radio New Zealand's archives and examines conductor Franz-Paul Decker significant influence on orchestral performance in New Zealand.

The Floating Bride

A selection of New Zealand songs that take us to the beach, the moon, the milking shed and many places besides. Jenny Wollerman (sop) and Emma Sayers (piano).

The Ideas of Edward Saïd

Dr Vijay Devadas and Professor John Drummond look at the life and works of one of the leading thinkers of the second half of the 20th century, Edward Saïd.

The Life and Music of Dave Brubeck

Norm Meehan looks at the life and music of the American jazz pianist.

The Low-Down with Nick Tipping

Nick lays down music from the bottom up with great bass players from Ray Brown to Edgar Meyer and composers who gave us great riffs from Handel to Queen (and yes, everything in between).

The Mixtape

Invited musical guests compile a C60 and talk us through their selections.

The Music Mix

Music, talk, live sessions, and coverage of contemporary music and events.

The Nerve: Music and the Human Experience

A CBC production about music and the human experience.

The Rake's Progress

Elric Hooper & Des Wilson present an introduction to The Rake's Progress by Stravinsky,

The Sampler

Nick Bollinger reviews the latest CD releases.

The Secret Life Of

Celebrating the music industry people who work back stage, or on the other side of the glass.

The Stars are Comforting

The letters of Beatrice Hill Tinsley (1941-1981)

The Sunday Feature

Something different from the wide world of music features.

The Voice Box

Clarissa Dunn opens the lid on the capabilities of the human voice as an instrument.

The Works

Major pieces, familiar and unfamiliar from new CDs which arrive every day, and the huge back-catalogue of classic recordings.

These Hopeful Machines

A six-part series in which James Gardner traces a personal path through the evolving world of electronic music.

University of Auckland Lilburn Composition Prize

Performances from the University of Auckland's Lilburn Composition Prize concert


What's going on in the world of music and the arts? From the concert hall to the cinema, we talk to musicians, composers, choreographers, dancers, actors, directors and artists - Upbeat finds out what makes them tick.

V-Ger: The story of the Voyager Golden Records

When NASA realized that the Voyager space probes being launched in 1977 would eventually travel beyond the edge of our solar system, they decided to include some kind of message to any intelligent aliens who might one day find them

Victoria - The Evolution of a Great Pop Song

Justin Gregory traces the evolution of a great pop song and a classic New Zealand music video.

Vintage Years

Performances by great artists from the mono era, including the latest remastered recordings.


Among the joys of music is the way in which a single song can encapsulate a whole microcosmic world.

Wallace National Piano Competition

Radio New Zealand Concert is recording the Wallace National Piano Competition and supplying audio for the live video stream.

Wayne's Music

Catch the sounds that shaped the decades. Songs you don't hear much anymore from the elegant 1920s, 30s & 40s... to the 1950s and swinging 60s when everything was fab, gear, and groovy!

Young New Zealand

Young Kiwi musicians' performances at competitions and concerts around the country.

Your Choice

A session for 9-5ers who can’t hear requests during the week. All from Radio New Zealand Concert’s vast CD collection or our own recordings.


Best In Show

Radio New Zealand listeners and staff share some of their favourite music, live sessions and interviews from the RNZ back catalogue.

Celebrating 60 Years of the Royal New Zealand Ballet

Clarissa Dunn and Hannah Sassman head behind the scenes at the Royal New Zealand Ballet, in celebration of their 60th birthday.

Concert Hall

Live recordings from New Zealand performers including the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra

Curtain Raiser

Illustrated introductions to major pieces from the classical repertoire.


Music 101 guests share the cornerstones of their specialist music knowledge.

He Ara Pūoro

A Pathway of Song: Richard Nunns plays many traditional Māori instruments in his collection.

Live Music & Sessions

From intimate acoustic sessions to epic, sold-out shows at Aotearoa’s best music venues, this is a collection of live contemporary music of all kinds.

Moving Music

Notable New Zealanders tell us about a piece of classical music that is meaningful to them.

Musical Dynasties

Uniting families that have demonstrated musicality across the generations.

On Song with Simon Sweetman

Simon Sweetman tells the stories behind classic Kiwi pop anthems.

Opera Australia's Ring Cycle

Reviewed by Paul Bushnell for Upbeat.

Organ Sounds

Organ sounds for Organ Week

Pixie Williams (1928 - 2013)

The singer of one of New Zealand's best known songs, Blue Smoke.

Richard Farrell - New Zealand Pianist

New Zealand pianist Richard Farrell was enjoying a successful international career until he was killed in a car accident at the age of 31. Peter Mechen and guests look back at Farrell’s achievements

Stravinsky - The Rite of Spring

The Rite of Spring is still provocative and disturbing a century after its première caused one of the most sensational scandals in artistic history.

The Immortal Beethoven

Introducing Ludwig van Beethoven.

The Ukulele

We focus on the the toddler of stringed instruments, the humble ukulele

The Year of Our Lorde...

A brief overview of singer/songwriter Lorde's career-to-date.

These are a few of our favourite things

In which Music 101 indulge their love of lists....

Toppermost of the poppermost 2014

A roundup of Radio New Zealand contributors giving their 'best ofs' for 2014.

Toy Love

One of the most influential and genuinely scary bands to come out of New Zealand.

Under The Influence

Significant overseas musicians and their influence on New Zealand music.