Hi-5 set to tour New Zealand

  • 18/08/2008

One of Australia's most popular children's groups, Hi-5, is set to tour the country with a circus themed pop-concert aimed at both young and old.

Performers Nathan Foley, Kellie Crawford, Sun Park, Stevie Nicholson and Casey Burgess will take to the stage next month as they tour New Zealand with the Hi-5 circus.

While the show will include juggling, tumbling and a flying trapeze, combined with their popular songs, it is the learning opportunities mixed with entertainment that has kept this show a success with children and parents.

With a string of television awards to their name, popular songs and a wide range of merchandise, it's not surprising Hi-5 have international appeal.

The group has such a following that a recent health forum in Australia called on performers like The Wiggles and Hi-5 to use their role model status to teach healthy eating habits to children.

Foley, 28, is one of two original members of the group who along with Crawford have been there since Hi-5 began.

Foley accepts while he won't be able to stay in the job forever he isn't planning on retiring yet.

"Right now I'm having fun, I'm not too old yet," he told NZPA.

The success of Hi-5 caught Foley by surprise but he says he always knew it was a good concept.

"The branding of it was fantastic and the idea of it all being five presenters and being positive for kids and learning through music was so good.

"But I never ever thought it would get to a point where I would look back on doing it for 10 years."

The tour works from country to country because kids are universal, he says.

"Kids are very honest and they love to hear music.

"They can grab onto different things and enjoy it without having that critical side of them, which is one of the reasons Hi-5 has lasted so long. "

Foley says the live show is very interactive, "a pop-concert for tiny tots".

While it is aimed at children, there is a broad range of people watching it.

"We have a huge teenage and university following.

"We have a huge adult following who don't actually have kids."

Foley says it may sound strange but Hi-5 is not like the traditional kids shows which were around when he was younger.

"That's what Hi-5 did 10 years ago, it set a bench mark and took kids television to another level."

So it wouldn't have anything to do with how good looking the Hi-5 group is?

"On a good day!

"Maybe there's an appeal in that way but also the music is not nursery rhyme, it actually has a top 40 essence to it but the lyrics are for kids.

"That's the appeal."

Foley tips his hat to that other Australian international world-wide success, The Wiggles.

While they aim for a different demographic and have different style of music, The Wiggles had made it possible for Hi-5 to succeed, Foley says.

"They set the benchmark way before we did and helped us get to where we are."

*Hi-5 will appear in:

Invercargill, September 27;

Dunedin, September 29;

Christchurch, October 1;

Wellington, October 3, 4;

Palmerston North, October 6;

Hamilton, October 8;

Auckland, October 12.

NZPA

source: newshub archive