Looking forward: What’s on my theatrical radar for 2013? (Part 1)

January 20, 2013
Festival Year! [by James Wenley] Theatre always goes to ground in January. The stages may be bare, but Auckland’s theatre community are busy strutting and fretting behind-the-scenes. There’s a lot to do: Auckland Fringe 2013 is now less than a month away, and Auckland Arts Festival is right on its tail. I’ve enjoyed the break, but if, like me, you […]

REVIEW: The Show Must Go On (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 18, 2011
Turning the tables [by Sharu Delilkan] Of all this year’s festival shows The Show Must Go On has to be the most memorable.  Not for acting, lighting, staging, music, writing, dialogue (there is none) or dance, but the real and raw effect it has on the audience. Descriptions such as ‘challenging’, ‘groundbreaking’, ‘brave’ and ‘provocative’ come to mind but I’ll […]

REVIEW: First Love (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 17, 2011
Beckett on Love [by Sharu Delilkan] We were greeted by instrumental music that immediately made me reminisce with fondness about my first love.  The stark stage with two different sized benches and the cold blue lighting contrasted the emotive background music. It’s not long before Conor Lovett enters stage right dressed in a chequered suit, hoodie and worn reddish-brown leather […]

FESTIVAL PREVIEW: Jerome Bel’s The Show Must Go On

March 15, 2011
Just Dance. [by James Wenley] Before me, 19 performers dance to Reel 2 Real’s ‘I like to move it’. Some are dancers, some are actors, and some have never performed before. It’s not your standard dance choreography, and it is definitely not abstract. The song is being taken literally, each performer has a different ‘it’ that they like to move, […]

REVIEW: The Manganiyar Seduction (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 11, 2011
Think inside the square [by Sharu Delilkan] In the bar prior to the performance someone said “Are you ready for ‘Indian Celebrity Squares’?”. And that was exactly the structure of the musicians we were greeted with onstage, with nine musicians across by four storeys high, revealing a whole grid of musicians who were eventually collectively lit. This was the beginning […]

REVIEW: Smoke & Mirrors (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 9, 2011
Camp Circus Freaks [by James Wenley] With this show especially, there is a reason why the performers are on the stage, and we can sit in the audience of the very attractive Spiegeltent. Many of the acts needed strength and ability that only years of training can bring. Nor would most of us, I suspect, be willing to display the […]

REVIEW: Vietnamese Water Puppets (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 9, 2011
Puppets, on water, from Vietnam  [by James Wenley] The Festival Garden in Aotea Square contains quite a treat. At the back, a small lake has been created. Regularly during the festival the Thang Long Troupe of Hanoi perform water puppetry there. You should seek it out. Water Puppetry is an art form that has been going strong for 1000 years. […]

REVIEW: Havoc in the Garden (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 8, 2011
Havoc on the Stage! [by James Wenley] From the outside looking in, our lives must seem bizarre, rushed, and incomprehensible. Havoc in the Garden cuts open houses and allows us to peek into other people’s lives. A brilliant scene shows people living their lives in parallel, unaware of each other, all talking and behaving in their own little bubbles. It’s […]

REVIEW: Paper Sky – A Love Story (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 7, 2011
Paper and Puppetry. Sometimes theatre can take you to that other place. All the elements combine to transport you to the place akin to the dreamland, the subconscious, where anything can happen. I’ve had this experience before, in Red Leap Theatre’s previous work The Arrival no less. It was with high hopes that I entered the Glen Eden Playhouse for […]

REVIEW: Xerxes (Auckland Arts Festival)

March 4, 2011
Xerxes ‘Handel-ed’ at its best [by Sharu Delilkan] King Xerxes could well be likened to an 18th-century Mr Bean, with a cruel streak. Australian-born counter tenor Tobias Cole, who plays the lead has a crystal clear voice that’s juxtaposed against his ‘Mr Bean-like’ dramatic facial expressions. Before I proceed I must admit this is my first experience of Xerxes – […]
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