Musician, festival director joins CPIT

Musician, festival director joins CPIT

Liam Ryan joined CPIT’s Department of Creative Industries as the new Performing Arts Manager this week. He will lead the Jazz School and National Academy of Singing and Dramatic Art (NASDA) degree programmes, CPIT is delighted to announce today.

Liam brings to CPIT considerable experience and mana as a leading figure in the New Zealand performing arts scene, as an educator, performer, producer and festival director and is mving to Christchurch from Nelson.

“Returning to Christchurch feels like a calling home,” he said. “So much of New Zealand’s music history was generated from Christchurch. It is a great opportunity to assist in the rebuild and help promote and foster the arts. For me music and the arts are the heartbeat of the cultural and economic life of any great city.”

Raised and educated in Christchurch, Ryan made a name in the NZ music scene in the early 1980s as a band member, songwriter and keyboardist of leading kiwi band the Narcs.

Liam Ryan singing and playing piano

Liam has since established himself as a leader in the delivery of performing arts in the tertiary sector in New Zealand. Over the past 15 years he has held leadership and management positions at Waikato Institute of Technology, Bay of Plenty Polytechnic, and Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology. He has also been involved in planning, curriculum design as well as academic leadership of cross-curricular areas of broadcasting, media and performing arts. He has also lectured at Masters level at the University of Waikato.

 Liam was an inaugural member of the NZ Music Commission. He is currently artistic director of the Tauranga National Jazz, and director of the Woollaston Nelson Jazz and Blues festival. He has continued to maintain a busy professional practice through many ongoing bands and projects with leading NZ performers (The Sou’Westers, The Lizard Kings and the reformed Narcs), and through his own recording label Torch Music.