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: The Road that Wasn’t There (Trick of the Light)

July 15, 2017
[Off the Beaten Track] Framed as a story within a story, cleverly designed to appeal to both the cynics and dreamers inside all of us, The Road that Wasn’t There unfolds through the fantastical tales of Maggie (Elle Wootton), while her adult son, Gabriel (Paul Waggott), considers moving her into a retirement home so she can be better looked after. […]

REVIEW: When Sun and Moon Collide (Auckland Theatre Company)

June 27, 2017
[Running on Empty] Everyone in When Sun and Moon Collide are running from something, haunted by the spectres of their pasts. Briar Grace-Smith’s contemporary classic takes these figurative and metaphorical ghosts and brings them to the fore, tying them into a tangled mess of poetry made flesh. It’s a shame then that the aspirations and images evoked in the text aren’t […]

REVIEW: Poropiti (The Basement)

June 22, 2017
[Back to the Future] Creators and performers Tola Newbery and Mara TK take us through the landscape of New Zealand’s colonial history from a Māori perspective. In what is essentially a poetic history lesson, using a fusion of movement and music, we are transported from the mythic conception of our land to our capitalist present. It’s a multi-disciplinary work that […]

REVIEW: James Nokise: Talk a Big Game (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 11, 2017
[What We Talk About When We Talk About Sport] James Nokise opens the show by telling us that this year he won’t be focussing his comedy on politics, and instead he’s decided to turn his attention towards New Zealand sports. It’s a simple and straightforward premise that Nokise beautifully subverts. Beginning with a brief explanation of why he’s made this […]

REVIEW: Aunty Donna: Big Boys (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 11, 2017
[May Contain Traces of Nuts] While I wouldn’t classify myself as one of Aunty Donna’s most devoted fans, having only discovered them recently, it’s easy to see why the Australian comedy sketch troupe has charmed audiences with their often surreal sense of humour and skewering of social norms. Primarily known through their Youtube channel, I was worried that their on-screen […]

REVIEW: Ren Lunicke: I’m an Apache Attack Helicopter (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 4, 2017
[Troll Hunter] Taking its title from the similarly named meme, Ren Lunicke’s, I’m an Apache Attack Helicopter takes on the critics and trolls who scoff at modern identity politics – the ones with rhetoric that is often cheap and easy, comparing the often ridiculed examples of identity (otherkin, furries) to the sincere and deeply heartfelt (gender and sexuality). Essentially a spiritual […]

REVIEW: Boys (Auckland Theatre Company)

May 3, 2017
[Torn Foreskin] Having premiered originally in 1980, Greg McGee’s Foreskin’s Lament might be the quintessential Kiwi drama, putting our nation’s favourite sport under the microscope. Despite its reputation, it lives in a state of antiquity like most of the New Zealand theatre canon, sitting on the shelves often to be appreciated rather than performed. While it would be interesting to […]

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 […]
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