REVIEW: Medusa (Q Matchbox)

October 27, 2018
[Reclaiming Female Rage] Smashing all my preconceptions of what theatre and the mythological story of Medusa are about, co-creators Nisha Madhan, Julia Croft, and Virginia Frankovich have created an aural, visceral and mind-blowing ‘out-of-this-world’ theatrical experience.  There were no snakes in this production, no monstrous females, no men being turned into stone — but there was a lot of female […]

REVIEW: Orientation (Proudly Asian Theatre)

September 11, 2018
[Roots] Can love transcend race? Is it better to have loved and lost your identity then not to have loved at all? These are just two of the poignant questions asked by Orientation, intelligently written and compellingly directed by Chye-Ling Huang. Against the backdrop of the legacy of colonialism that continues to inform racial politics in contemporary Aotearoa, Orientation is […]

REVIEW: Burn Her (Q Matchbox)

August 6, 2018
[From the Ashes, we Rise] The world has changed since the first reading of Sam Brooks’ latest play, Burn Her, at The Basement Theatre two years ago. At the time, there was no way Brooks could have anticipated the climate in which his play would debut in the Q MATCHBOX 2018 Season. While the election of Trump has publicly highlighted […]

REVIEW: Yorick! (Binge Culture)

June 19, 2018
[Dance of Death] Neither an overly-intellectual deconstruction of Hamlet (a la Heiner Muller’s Hamletmachine) or an alternative take on the play (a la Thomas Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead), Binge Culture’s Yorick! merely uses Shakespeare’s canonical text as a launching pad for their whimsical and absurd exploration of mortality. And mortality, being the wide-reaching topic it is, is a […]

REVIEW: OTHER [chinese] (Q Matchbox)

September 8, 2017
[Identity and the Chorus] Following her solo show White/Other, Alice Canton has expanded her exploration of identity into a multifaceted production driven by a variety of voices. In her attempt to tackle the question of what it means to be Chinese in Aotearoa, she has made the logical jump to recruit a massive cast of ‘storytellers’ to share their own […]

REVIEW: My Best Dead Friend (Q Matchbox)

July 17, 2017
[Backstreet Dunedin] The show begins with our performer already on stage, smiling and jigging about to the Backstreet Boys playing over the speakers. The set consists of large blackboards and not much else. It’s bare, empty, and ready for a story to unfold. Anya Tate-Manning jumps straight into it by setting the scene and describing her tight knit group of […]

REVIEW: Don Juan (A Slightly Isolated Dog)

November 1, 2016
[Juan Direction] The false illusion of immersive theatre is that the audience co-authors the play with the theatremakers. That without the audience the play would not be the same. But the reality is most interactive theatre experiences are as pre-determined and scripted as any conventional ones. Any sense of freedom or choice is mostly manufactured, never rising beyond a clever […]

REVIEW: Leilani (Q Matchbox)

August 11, 2016
[Finding Ourselves in the Form] Sometimes there is nothing so magical as a girl, on a stage, sitting on a rubbish bag.  With every funding cut scything away at our creative waistlines, the Arts are now in a position where every show must first justify its existence. Why do we bother to make theatre – especially under these conditions? Sitting […]

REVIEW: Everything Anyone Ever Wanted (Black Sheep Productions)

June 24, 2016
[Generation Movement] Less than a week after The Spinoff wrote this response to a North & South article on millennials, award-winning choreographic director Natalie Maria Clark presents Everything Anyone Ever Wanted, her fifth show in four years under the collective Black Sheep Productions and one of the strongest pieces of performance, let alone dance, to advocate for Generation Y. Its […]