REVIEW: Fake News (The Actors’ Program)

November 6, 2020
‘Actors have it easy..?’ As the world waits with bated breath for the 2020 US election results, the Actors’ Program premieres Fake News at the Basement. Politically speaking, it is a long, arduous day in which Donald Trump – who uses the phrase ‘fake news’ with alarming regularity – declares he is President before votes have been counted. The night […]

REVIEW: Essays in Love (Basement Theatre)

March 14, 2020
[What the Heart Knows] I’ll admit it: I’m a hopeless romantic.  It’s a quality I share with Otto (Leon Wadham), the protagonist of Essays in Love, though we differ in our preferred outlets for romantic escapism: me, a never-ending catalogue of romantic comedies; Otto, the writings of history’s most erudite philosophers.  We first meet Otto before the house lights have […]

REVIEW: Year of the Tiger 虎- Hǔ (Basement Theatre)

March 13, 2020
[The Tiniest Threads Can Connect Us] Year of the Tiger (虎- Hǔ) brings together six volunteer strangers and pushes them into the spotlight. These strangers are connected by a single thread: their zodiac animal. Coming from different backgrounds, cultures, countries, these people are bound by the simple fact that they are all tigers. Alice Canton explores the cultural ideas of […]

REVIEW: A Frickin Dangerous Space-mas (Basement Theatre)

November 24, 2019
Spoofnik Written by comedy troupe Frickin Dangerous Bro (Pax Assadi, James Roque and Jamaine Ross) and directed by Jane Yonge, A Frickin Dangerous Space-mas chronicles the intrepid crew of the International Space Station as they prepare to celebrate Christmas and welcome the arrival of a new crew-mate, whilst warily awaiting the Captain’s (Sam Snedden) decision as to who will succeed him in his role. […]

REVIEW: An Organ of Soft Tissue (Basement Theatre)

November 6, 2019
[Continuing the #MeToo Conversation] Responding to the #MeToo movement, An Organ of Soft Tissue continues the conversation around perceptions of trauma, sexuality, and gender with an exploration of memory, identity, and sexual politics. At times this show cuts very close to home, the eyes of some audience members glittering with pain and recognition. A pre-show announcement has invited us to […]

REVIEW: Bad Mood (Basement Theatre)

November 8, 2018
[Collage of Womanhood] As artist in residence for the Basement this year, Bad Mood is Tallulah Holly-Massey’s third and final work following Mammoth and Tender is the Night.  I had watched Mammoth earlier during the year, and was excited to see how Holly-Massey’s final work would play out.  Performed by four distinguished dancers — Kelly Nash, Nancy Wijohn, Zahra Killeen-Chance […]

REVIEW: Such Stuff as Dreams (Basement Theatre)

November 8, 2018
[Half asleep] Presented by Dusty Room Productions, Such Stuff as Dreams, by Camilla Walker, advertises itself as a love story between Claire, a “wanderlusting waitress”, and Alfie, a busker with schizophrenia, played by Catherine Yates and Tyler Wilson Kokiri respectively. Mental health is a common theme in New Zealand theatre, and such theatrical representations require not only a deft hand, but […]

REVIEW: Violent Bloom (Basement Theatre)

October 31, 2018
[Reaching Across the Divides of Time] I walk into the familiar environs of Basement Theatre’s larger space feeling particularly absent-minded, and am pleasantly ushered through a series of recurring paper streamers into a black-box space designed to transport us to a new world while leaving all cares of ours at the door. The set (designed by Christine Urquhart and constructed […]

REVIEW: A Lost Cause (Basement Theatre)

October 27, 2018
[Women on the Verge of  a Nervous Breakdown] Despite a ‘Decade of Disruption’ being The Basement’s motto for this year, it’s the prominence of mental health issues that seems most notable in their programming. With works such as Near Death Experience, Breathe and Paper Planes being just the tip of the iceberg. Loren Black’s A Lost Cause may be the […]

REVIEW: Paper Planes (Basement Theatre)

October 6, 2018
[A dog, a moon and a Belarusian walk into a bar…] Late one night, Fran (Holly Hudson) lies awake in bed while her neighbours party the night away. Unable to sleep, her insomnia is exacerbated by her canine companion Dog (a superlative performance by puppeteer Tamara Gussy), who insists on playing while her Belarusian landlady, Mrs Withers (another puppet performed […]
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