Farewell Zealandia
Forgotten Kiwi Songs of WWI

Farewell Zealandia

An exhibition of 20 songs of WW1, the stories behind them and the lives of their writers. The exhibition also explores the role music played in the social fabric of New Zealand at the time, both as a form of entertainment and as a vehicle for communicating ideals, aspirations and feelings about the war.


“It’s an incredible story that gives a uniquely Kiwi perspective about what it meant to be alive at the time”

Twenty songs were carefully chosen from the archives of Musical Heritage New Zealand and re-recorded with the help of Radio New Zealand. These can be heard at specially made listening stations. Accompanying the songs is a wealth of biographical information about their authors – soldiers, entertainers and those left behind. Contemporary illustrations feature icons such as nikau palms and the Southern Alps, and help build a picture of what was important to New Zealand identity in the early 20th century.

Read more about the exhibition and its genesis here.

Information & Specifications


Each song is presented with a period-style listening post containing its MP3; a framed story and sheet music cover.

Additional material includes introductory panels, supporting images, silhouette figures, short films, postcards and song lyric sheets.


Size:  30 linear metres with some flexible configurations possible.

Storage: 4-5 crates / secure and dry


Marketing and education resources

Layout template

Musical performances by David Dell of MHNZ, and puppetry performances by Anna Bailey, are available but must be negotiated separately; see accompanying tour information.


$2000 + GST, plus forward freight costs, for an eight-week hire period.