REVIEW: The Piano: The Ballet (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 10, 2018
[Colonised Form] Choreographic and design duo Jirí and Otto Bubeníček originally staged The Piano: The Ballet in Germany, 2014, as part of a triple bill. In its latest incarnation for the Royal New Zealand Ballet it has been reworked into a full-length narrative ballet, closely following Jane Campion’s award-winning film. The set design is a real strength for this production, […]

REVIEW: OrphEus – a dance opera (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 10, 2018
[Look Back in Splendour] OrphEus – a dance opera (Orpheus, Eurydice and Us) is a large and ambitious project for The New Zealand Dance Company, conceived, created and directed by Michael Parmenter. The extensive programme notes and the work itself both indicate the academic depth of research and inspiration that have culminated in this large-scale production. Parmenter draws together past, […]

REVIEW: Bless the Child (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 10, 2018
[It Couldn’t Happen Here] The work of Tawata Productions is notable for showcasing topical issues. The kōrero of Bless the Child is no different. This dark, albiet vital work reveals the world that we’re part of, where our tamariki are not always protected by their whānau. Written by the acclaimed Māori writer Hone Kouka, Bless the Child shines a spotlight on this […]

REVIEW: Missing Lids (The Basement)

March 8, 2018
[Tupperware Talent] Missing Lids is one of Holly Newsome’s first full length works; an entertaining trio of dancers in yellow morph suits captivating their audience within the confines of the Basement’s Studio space. Since graduating from the New Zealand School of Dance, Newsome has created work (under her company name Discotheque) for Footnote New Zealand Dance and the Wellington Fringe […]

REVIEW: The Plastic Orgasm (Auckland Fringe)

March 8, 2018
[Radical Failure] The term ‘radical failure’ is used during the centrepiece of The Plastic Orgasm, a paganistic ritual that blows up the show, releasing a primal scream of questions and confusions onto the stage. The act of failure implies an attempt has been made. You can’t fail without trying. You can’t succeed without risking failure. So, to call The Plastic […]

REVIEW: Question Time Blues (Auckland Fringe)

March 8, 2018
[Delahunty’s Lament] We often talk about the personal as the political, but how often do we see the reverse? The political as personal. In Question Time Blues, former Green Party MP Catherine Delahunty takes the stage to vent about her time in and out of parliament. There’s a freshness to her presence, by sheer virtue of her being someone so […]

REVIEW: The Race (Auckland Fringe)

March 5, 2018
[A Precarious Performance] Take a walk down Queen Street and it is difficult not to notice the numerous bodies huddled on the pavement. Yet despite the very real and ‘visible’ problem of homelessness in our cities today, the complex stories and experiences of those who survive temporary, shared, or uninhabitable accommodation is often invisible from public discourse. The new production […]

REVIEW: Billy T Jams (NZ International Comedy Festival)

March 4, 2018
[Welcome to the Jam] The Billy T Jam is the amuse-bouche of the NZ International Comedy Festival. An opportunity for audiences to whet their appetite with an introduction to the year’s Billy T Award nominees. 2010 winner Rhys Mathewson, who ensures the audience has no question as to who the festivals gold sponsor is – spoiler: it’s Best Mayo – […]

REVIEW: Roots (Auckland Fringe)

March 4, 2018
[Journey to the Past and Future] New Zealand is a country with a strong migratory history, but too rarely are the stories of our Asian roots given room to breathe and grow on stage, which is one of the reasons why Proudly Asian Theatre represents an integral component to both our theatrical and cultural landscape. With only four stage productions […]

REVIEW: Akram Khan’s Giselle (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 2, 2018
[A Masterpiece] The build-up to Akram Khan’s Giselle opening in Auckland has been significant: a visit ten years in planning by Auckland Arts Festival Director Jonathan Bielski; nearly one hundred cast and crew on English National Ballet’s first visit to New Zealand; a significant reinterpretation of a well-loved romantic ballet by a bold, modern choreographer; the debut international performance occurring […]
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