• Presented by Jakop Ahlbom Company
    Auckland Arts Festival

    REVIEW: Horror (Auckland Arts Festival)

    [Here’s Johnny (and other references)] If you adore the horror genre, then Jakop Ahlbom’s masterpiece is an absolute must-see. As spectacles go Horror is as spectacular as you can get. The show is a true [...]
  • Still don't know what this title means.
    Theatre Reviews

    REVIEW: Schlunted (The Other People)

    [Still Stunted] Musicals have notoriously long gestation periods. It takes a lot of chutzpah, then, to think that you can create (and stage) a musical from scratch in one hundred days. Or is that hubris? [...]
  • Presented by Complicite
    Auckland Arts Festival

    REVIEW: The Encounter (Auckland Arts Festival)

    [Expanding Storytelling] Having the voice of Richard Katz whisper into your right ear is a profoundly intimate encounter you wouldn’t expect from the comfort of your chair situated ten metres from the stage, yet, as [...]
The Supermarket Genre was very popular in Auckland Fringe 2017
In the Spotlight

SCENE BY JAMES: Thank Dionysus for Auckland Fringe

by James Wenley in Auckland Fringe Festival

[Auckland Fringe 2017: Auckland Needs You] As we head into the finals days of the 2017 Auckland Fringe, it’s weird to think that it almost didn’t happen. The Fringe has bumped along biannually since 2009, but after decoupling from Auckland Live support, its long-term survival has been precarious. After funding decisions did not go its way, late last year Fringe director Lydia Zanetti put the feelers out to see if the demand was still there from the artists. Don’t take away our Fringe, they said. Zanetti forged ahead to create this grassroots 2017 Fringe. There is no print program. The [...]

REVIEW: Horror (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 23, 2017
[Here’s Johnny (and other references)] If you adore the horror genre, then Jakop Ahlbom’s masterpiece is an absolute must-see. As spectacles go Horror is as spectacular as you can get. The show is a true homage to the horror genre and begs for a cult following. The attention to detail is magnificent in both the set design and costume, and […]

REVIEW: Every Brilliant Thing (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 22, 2017
[Brilliant Clarity] Every Brilliant Thing is not what you would expect…not at all. But it definitely is, as billed, “the funniest thing you’ll ever see about the least funny thing in the world”. It’s important not to give away the format of the show, as part of its joy is how it reveals itself through sweet, funny, poignant scenes and […]

REVIEW: Peer Gynt [recycled] (Auckland Theatre Company)

March 22, 2017
[Postmodern Stress Disorder] In our over-saturated times where media of all forms is available in excess, the idea of originality becomes the ultimate predicament to the storyteller. There’s the notion that every story has already been told, all paths have been ventured, and nothing new can be said anymore. We live in an age where audiences are savvier than ever, […]

REVIEW: Schlunted (The Other People)

March 17, 2017
[Still Stunted] Musicals have notoriously long gestation periods. It takes a lot of chutzpah, then, to think that you can create (and stage) a musical from scratch in one hundred days. Or is that hubris? But that’s the challenge The Other People team (writer/director Adam Spedding, composer Brayden Jeffrey, producer Hadley Taylor) set themselves, and the result, Schlunted, was first […]

REVIEW: The Encounter (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 16, 2017
[Expanding Storytelling] Having the voice of Richard Katz whisper into your right ear is a profoundly intimate encounter you wouldn’t expect from the comfort of your chair situated ten metres from the stage, yet, as Katz demonstrates in his preshow demonstration, technology can take theatre to places we have never experienced before. For one hour and fifty minutes Katz manages […]

REVIEW: The Biggest (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 14, 2017
[Touching Masculinity] Writer and director Jamie McCaskill has a knack for capturing the way real people speak, whether it’s the inhabitants of a woman’s refuge (Not in Our Neighbourhood) or a men’s prison (Manawa). In The Biggest, McCaskill turns his ears to the older Kiwi male. You know the one, the classic bloke, often reduced to a simple stereotype. Set […]

REVIEW: Othello (Pop-up Globe)

March 12, 2017
[All About Iago] The problematic racial politics of Othello are scrutinised for a good reason. You have a play that centers around a dark-skinned man being tricked by, typically, a light-skinned man, into killing his white wife. So, looking at it as a modern audience, is it an examination of otherness or a perpetuation of it? Director Ben Naylor’s production […]

REVIEW: Flesh of the Gods (Auckland Fringe)

March 10, 2017
[Raw Meat] Entering a show with a certain set of expectations is never ideal. Those who saw Pressure Point Collective’s Potato Stamp Megalomaniac last year were treated to a playful retelling of a manic episode that was both honest and theatrically inventive. While plenty of innovative and unexpected devices were used to tell the story, they always adhered to a […]

REVIEW: LA SOIRÉE (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 9, 2017
[Join the Party] It is not surprising to learn that LA SOIRÉE scooped up the prestigious Olivier Award for Best Entertainment for their London season. It would be a lie if I said I was expecting amazing things from tonight’s performance, having seen a slew of passable to mediocre cabaret/circus shows in the recent past.  However it’s not often that you get […]

REVIEW: Power Ballad (Auckland Fringe)

March 9, 2017
[Language Games] Julia Croft’s If There’s Not Dancing at the Revolution, Then I’m Not Coming used feminist film theorist Laura Mulvey as the jumping off point for a riotous deconstruction of female representation in our popular media. It put those common tropes we often take for granted under a critical lens and scrutinised the hell out of them, all while […]

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