REVIEW: Carmen with L’Arlésienne (Royal New Zealand Ballet)

March 31, 2017
[Power of Petit] Royal New Zealand Ballet Artistic Director Francesco Ventriglia has a personal reason for bringing Roland Petit’s work to New Zealand – he danced two key roles early in his own career under the ‘Maestro’. Petit’s work is a treat for Kiwi audiences, and a first for the Royal New Zealand Ballet. Roland Petit (1924-2011) was a masterful […]

REVIEWS: The Bone Feeder & Rice (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 28, 2017
Nathan Joe reports back about two final shows at the recent Auckland Arts Festival, branching out into Opera and Dance: [The Bone Feeder: No Place Like Home] Let’s get one thing out of the way: an opera with a primarily East Asian cast is a big deal. This is doubly the case in light of NZ Opera’s recent production of […]

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 […]
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