Music, Me and Mayhem! [by Sharu Delilkan]
It was like going to visit an old friend turning up at Mangere Arts Centre for my first review of the year.
For Valentine’s Day evening, Victoria Schmidt’s brand new work Music and Me was an interesting choice, to say the least. Particularly since it was billed as telling the harsh realities of four individuals, struggling to survive in a forgotten world of prostitution, mental illness, substance abuse, depression [and you’ll have to come along to find out the rest].
But tell four stories it definitely did, cleverly interwoven and utilising the hilarious interplay between the characters.
It took a while for the show to commence but the time that we sat there staring at the set gave me a sense of what was in store. One half of the stage was clearly a hairdressing salon, Dazzling Shonte’s Hair & Beauty, while the other half with crates stacked high was not as obvious. The red lighting initially gives the salon a bordello-feel but when the lights come up it a shocking pink leopard skin décor is revealed, complemented by numerous Madonna posters.
Killer Kreation Knocks yer socks off [by Sharu Delilkan]
The ‘Klu Kux Klan’ of Pacifica aka Kila Kokonut Krew have yet again pulled a rabbit out of the hat with another first - The Factory, New Zealand’s first Pacific Island musical.
“What the hell”, I thought. “How can it have taken until 2011 to produce a musical, with the abundance of Pacific Island musical talent in Aotearoa?”
The Factory is not just created by Islanders, it’s a musical about Islanders, that covers the struggles faced by generations of Islanders coming to Niu Sila for “milk, honey and money".
The show is the brainchild of KKK co-founder Vela Manusaute and is inspired by his father’s journey to Aotearoa to work and make a better life for his family.
The factory is the main character, originally providing hope and income for new arrivals to New Zealand but ultimately stripping the workers of their connections to family and their aspirations for a better life.