The Auckland Arts Festival opened yesterday - a showcase of music, arts and theatre from NZ and around the world.

It kicked off last night at Silo Park with a musical extravaganza which includes many of our finest and most talented Māori musicians and producers.

Riki Gooch is a well-known music producer and maestro in the music business and he says his friend is the inspiration behind the bringing together of the musos.

“Eru was my friend Eddie Tukaki passed away 20 years ago but we use to call him Eru that was his nickname so that was the seed that planted the idea.”

From Leighton Kora and Anna Coddington to Ria Hall - this is a musical showcase of instruments and singing talents.

Auckland Arts Festival organiser Tama Waipara says it’s fitting to open the event like this.

“Mea nui o ngā mahi toi te ao puoro me te ao waiata hoki nō reira timata te ahurei i roto i te ao waiata.”

But Waipara also says it’s only the beginning of what’s in store at the festival.

“Te ao whakaari te ao kanikani me ērā atu mahi toi nunui o te ao o Aotearoa me ngā manuhiri kei tāwāhi hoki.”

The stage was set to entertain the masses laying down the foundation for the many acts to come.