Hawke’s Bay Opera House

Theatre complex refurbishment reaches into the dreams and hearts of a community

A little girl, a pint sized ballerina is overawed with the grandness of the boxes, the opulent ceiling and walls as she waits in the wings before her end of year recital, tasting her ballerina dreams come to life. The lead violinist from our National Symphony never fails to be impressed with the acoustics. One grand art-nouveau inspired theatre has a multitude of intensely positive feelings and experiences from the young to the old, from Hastings to the wider community.

When it was discovered in 2004 that the Hawke’s Bay Opera House, this grand 90-year-old dame didn’t meet current earthquake standards and the complex was in need of significant redevelopment, Giblin Group with its heart in the community, was brought on board.

From the get-go Giblin Group knew that without the support of the community the project would never work. With a creative community communications and engagement strategy worked into the strategic $7.5M capital raising campaign, the first pillars of success were placed beneath the project.

For what seemed like an impossible amount of money to raise for a relatively small community, Giblin Group made it entirely possible by setting the bar high and really connecting into the community.

Giblin Group worked across a host of applications from central government funding, community trusts, gaming trusts, private trusts, other private authorities through to creating corporate partnership opportunities. The success of these capital-raising branches was not only the strategic approach but also Giblin Group’s innate relationship brokering skills.

Since 2011 I have worked with Jenni and Christine on a number of highly successful fundraising initiatives in support of the Sarjeant Gallery Redevelopment Project. With their help and expertise, we have raised more than $28.8m from central government and Lottery sources. The Giblin Group are a pleasure to work with and have provided great advice on many occasions concerning communications and public engagement. I can certainly recommend their services.

Greg Anderson, Director, Sarjeant Gallery

Giblin Group supported Blue Oyster with developing a robust Funding Strategy that took into account the specific needs of our organisation and activity. Jenni and Jess offered substantial advice and support in, not only establishing this strategy but giving us helpful tools for implementation and always prioritised sustainability throughout. Their enthusiasm for our space and activity was truly felt and appreciated – our relationship with them will be nourished and valued well into the future.

Grace Ryder, Gallery Director, Blue Oyster Gallery

“As our thinking evolved, Giblin Group showed a steady commitment to deepen their understanding of our needs. We always looked forward to our coaching sessions which were stimulating and inspiring. Jess and Jenni became valued colleagues that supported and provoked thinking with rigour and generosity. They’re now not only valuable advocates for BATS but part of our whānau.”

Jonty Hendry - General Manager, BATS Theatre

“Jenni did a fantastic job in helping us to secure critical partnerships and funding support for our internationally significant Len Lye Centre project – what’s more we really enjoyed working with her.”

Barbara McKerrow - Former CEO New Plymouth District Council

“Giblin Group’s knowledge of government practices and procedures on a national and local level is invaluable, and I often find that they are well connected with staff and officials on all levels of Government. Giblin Group scopes their assignments well, provides accurate cost estimates for their services, delivers within the agreed timeframes and always deliver excellent quality work – no project manager can really ask for more!”

Kritzo Venter, Senior Stormwater Engineer, Wanganui District Council

“The work that the Giblin Group completed, in collaboration with our staff, was instrumental in the success the project has had in securing significant funding to this key City initiative. In particular we have found the experience of the Giblin Group to been invaluable in seeking funding from a variety of sources in an increasingly challenging environment.”

Lance Vervoort, General Manager – Community, Hamilton City Council