6 Oct 2011
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Award-winning entertainer Frankie Stevens was honoured at last night's gala opening of the Maori Art Market in Porirua, Wellington.
Award-winning singer, songwriter, actor, and television personality Frankie Stevens was last night honoured as the celebrity guest for the gala opening of the MAORI ART MARKet at Te Rauparaha Arena in Porirua, Wellington.
MAORI ART MARKet has previously honoured the Maori Queen, Dame Te Atairangikaahu, Sir Howard Morrison and Inia Te Wiata.
Creative director for the MAORI ART MARKet Darcy Nicholas said Frankie Stevens has a glittering world class singing and acting career. He had many firsts for New Zealand and was now making a name for himself helping young people make a success in the entertainment industry.
Frankie has rubbed shoulders and joined on stage some of the world's best known singers including Shirley Bassey, Des O'Connor, Sammy Davis Jnr and Olivia Newton John. He was selected to play the High Priest in Harry M Miller's New Zealand touring theatre production of "Jesus Christ Superstar" and was later joined by his younger brother Jon, who played the role of Judas.
He has made guest appearances on television shows in Australia, Great Britain, USA and New Zealand and acted in a James Bond movie, Swiss Family Robinson, Hercules, Lawless and the Matrix 2.
"I once played a Russian spy in the television series Hawaii Five O," Frankie said, "not bad for a Maori boy from Upper Hutt."
He always wanted to be a singer, joining his school band at 13 and launching his own professional career aged 16 when he moved to Sydney to join a group called 'Peter Nelson and the Castaways'. In Sydney he met Tom Jones, who invited him to London.
When he got to London and re-introduced himself to Tom Jones with "Hi, I'm Frankie Stevens from Upper Hutt", the super-star singer couldn't remember him, but after hearing his voice he signed him up for Jones's record label at the same time Gilbert O'Sullivan was signed.
The 2011 MAORI ART MARKet is open to the public as of today.