• tewaka
    Theatre Reviews

    REVIEW: Te Waka Huia (Te Pou)

    [Grief and Belonging] It’s a hard thing, to write something from tragedy and history, knowing that a lineage of survivors will be reviewing your best attempts to honour them.   Directed by Chris Molloy, and [...]
  • Nell Gwynn, by Jessica Swale, dir Colin McColl, an Auckland Theatre Company production. Production photography: Michael Smith
    Auckland Theatre Company

    REVIEW: Nell Gwynn (Auckland Theatre Company)

    [The Rebirth of the Theatre] Of the many great responses from liberal tweeters commenting on the backlash to Jodie Whittaker’s casting as the thirteenth Doctor, my favourite was from playwright Dan Rebellato: EXT. PLAYHOUSE. 1660. [...]
  • mdwap-1133x628
    Theatre Reviews

    REVIEW: My Dad Wrote a Porno Live

    [Let’s Get Physical] Like radio, podcasting can create a sense of intimacy. If you listen to a particular programme long enough, it can lead to a sense of false familiarity with the voices of the [...]
  • TSA_36
    The Basement

    REVIEW: The South Afreakins (The Basement)

    [Super Gold (card)] When I think of white South Africans, a couple things come to mind: Apartheid, the Springboks, the religious psychos who used to live up the street and, of course, the bad guys [...]
  • Photo credit: Adam Ferris
    Dance Reviews

    REVIEW: Old Tricks New Dogs (Black Sheep Productions)

    [Wonder Dogs] Old Tricks New Dogs successfully and fully explores its theme of dogginess through movement, sound, props, personalities and proximities. This non-narrative dance-theatre work follows a thread rather than a storyline, but nevertheless feels [...]
Nell Gwynn, by Jessica Swale, dir Colin McColl, an Auckland Theatre Company production. Production photography: Michael Smith
In the Spotlight

REVIEW: Nell Gwynn (Auckland Theatre Company)

by James Wenley in Auckland Theatre Company

[The Rebirth of the Theatre] Of the many great responses from liberal tweeters commenting on the backlash to Jodie Whittaker’s casting as the thirteenth Doctor, my favourite was from playwright Dan Rebellato: EXT. PLAYHOUSE. 1660. AUDIENCE MEMBER runs from theatre. PASSER-BY: What ails you sir? MEMBER: ’Sblood, they have a WOMAN playing DESDEMONA. — Dan Rebellato (@DanRebellato) July 16, 2017 That woman is believed to be Anne Marshall, who played Desdemona in the first English production to feature professional female actors on 8 December 1660. The playhouses had reopened for the first time in 18 years following the end of [...]

REVIEW: Te Waka Huia (Te Pou)

August 21, 2017
[Grief and Belonging] It’s a hard thing, to write something from tragedy and history, knowing that a lineage of survivors will be reviewing your best attempts to honour them.   Directed by Chris Molloy, and written and produced Naomi Bartley, Te Waka Huia responds to New Zealand’s worst road incident: the 1963 Brynderwyn bus crash. It follows an interpretation of historical tragedy, […]

REVIEW: Nell Gwynn (Auckland Theatre Company)

August 20, 2017
[The Rebirth of the Theatre] Of the many great responses from liberal tweeters commenting on the backlash to Jodie Whittaker’s casting as the thirteenth Doctor, my favourite was from playwright Dan Rebellato: EXT. PLAYHOUSE. 1660. AUDIENCE MEMBER runs from theatre. PASSER-BY: What ails you sir? MEMBER: ’Sblood, they have a WOMAN playing DESDEMONA. — Dan Rebellato (@DanRebellato) July 16, 2017 […]

REVIEW: My Dad Wrote a Porno Live

August 17, 2017
[Let’s Get Physical] Like radio, podcasting can create a sense of intimacy. If you listen to a particular programme long enough, it can lead to a sense of false familiarity with the voices of the hosts. That illusion of companionship is especially true with My Dad Wrote A Porno, a podcast in which Jamie Morton reads his father’s self-published erotica, […]

REVIEW: The South Afreakins (The Basement)

August 17, 2017
[Super Gold (card)] When I think of white South Africans, a couple things come to mind: Apartheid, the Springboks, the religious psychos who used to live up the street and, of course, the bad guys in Lethal Weapon 2. It says something that The South Afreakins managed to win me over. To cut to the chase, this show is great. Written and […]

REVIEW: Old Tricks New Dogs (Black Sheep Productions)

August 9, 2017
[Wonder Dogs] Old Tricks New Dogs successfully and fully explores its theme of dogginess through movement, sound, props, personalities and proximities. This non-narrative dance-theatre work follows a thread rather than a storyline, but nevertheless feels complete. The performance begins while the audience is still milling around at the bar; a hi-vis performer with a whistle shepherds us upstairs and into […]

REVIEW: The Effect (Fractious Tash)

August 7, 2017
[May induce euphoria and drowsiness] Creative Producer Jason Hodzelmans and Artistic Director Benjamin Henson have created a very particular brand with theatre company Fractious Tash. They’ve been called ‘innovative’, ‘imaginative’, and ‘outstanding’ – all theatrical buzzwords, but ones that are nonetheless justified. You recognise a Henson production, not because of anything expected, but because of his innate ability to create […]

REVIEW: The Pickle King (Indian Ink)

August 6, 2017
[Well Preserved] It’s a testament to the quality of Indian Ink’s storytelling that The Pickle King, the company’s 15-year old play, has stood the test of time. Those like myself who were unable to see its original production are given the opportunity to see a play that made one of New Zealand’s leading theatre companies who they are today. If their […]

REVIEW: Looking at Stuff in Clouds (The Basement)

July 31, 2017
[Not just Fluff] Like Toa Fraser’s classic two-hander Bare, Looking at Stuff in Clouds is a character study of a place through the lives of its inhabitants. Instead of Auckland City, though, we are relocated to small town New Zealand. Performed by co-writers Donna Brookbanks and Shoshana McCallum, it offers a humorous insight into our less metropolitan corners. We move […]

REVIEW: Cock (Silo Theatre)

July 25, 2017
[No Joke] It seems only fitting that director Shane Bosher return to Auckland to direct a play from his bucket list for the company he co-founded. Presented by Silo Theatre and Auckland Live, the title of Mike Bartlett’s Laurence Olivier Award-winning play may put some people off, but it epitomises the raw honesty of the dialogue which drives Bartlett’s script. […]

REVIEW: My Best Dead Friend (Q Matchbox)

July 17, 2017
[Backstreet Dunedin] The show begins with our performer already on stage, smiling and jigging about to the Backstreet Boys playing over the speakers. The set consists of large blackboards and not much else. It’s bare, empty, and ready for a story to unfold. Anya Tate-Manning jumps straight into it by setting the scene and describing her tight knit group of […]

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