New Zealand theatre reviews, performace reviews and performing arts directory



New Zealand professional theatre & dance: reviews, news and your views
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NZ Fringe Festival Awards 2015 [more]
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Auckland Fringe Awards 2015
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BARKING GECKO Thetre Company (Western Australia) seeks Artistic, apply by 27/3 [more]
HUMOROUS ARTS TRUST (Wellington) seeks PART TIME ADMINISTRATOR, apply by 31/3 [more]
PLAYWRIGHTS b4 25, submit by 1/4
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PANZ 10 Minute PLAY COMPETITION 2015, submit by 30/04 [more



Latest Theatre and Performance Reviews
LET IT BE at Civic Theatre, Auckland
reviewed by Dione Joseph 27 Mar 2015
A Twist and Shout down memory lane
Team up some of the world’s best actors and musicians (including a left-handed guitar player) who have passing resemblances to the four youngsters from Liverpool, unearth some Beatlemania footage including swooning girls from Shea Stadium, intersperse these with some flower-power tunes, trippy graphics and advertisements for highly carcinogenic stimulants, and you have a facsimile of one of the world’s best bands providing hit after hit after hit for almost two solid hours. [more]


THE ROYAL NZ BALLET PRESENTS DON QUIXOTE at ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre, Auckland
reviewed by Rosemary Martin 27 Mar 2015
Spanish escapism and fabulous dancing
The ballet is strongly based on the dynamics between the lead couple – Kitri and Basilio. Mayu Tanigaito as Kitri and Kohei Iwamoto as Basilio provide us with outstanding chemistry and virtuosic style. If there ever was a time for all the ‘flashy’ dance moves to come out – high extensions, flying jetes, lengthy balances, pirouettes in every which way – Don Quixote is it. Tanigaito and Iwamoto pull out all the stops. While there were a few moments in the act three grand pas de deux where things went ever so slightly astray they remained composed and a joy to watch. [more]

See also reviews by:
 Lyne Pringle
 Mona Williams (DANZ Magazine);
 Candice Egan and Mark Quigley
 Hannah Molloy
 Ann Hunt (Dominion Post);

Photo by Stephen A'Court
AN AWFULLY BIG ADVENTURE at Q Theatre Loft, 305 Queen St, Auckland
reviewed by Vanessa Byrnes 25 Mar 2015
Theatrical clarity with flashes of brilliance
This fantastic show for kids and adults alike is a clever, funny, highly accessible piece of theatre that deserves to be seen far and wide. ... Using meta-theatrical, musical, symbolic, semi-Brechtian and other performance devices, the work centres on how to explain war and its effects to children. This is no mean feat, but it’s in the telling and playing that the real genius soars. [more]

See also reviews by:
 John Smythe
 Elle Wooton

BREAK UP [WE NEED TO TALK] at La Mama, La Galleria, 47 Great Jones St, NYC, USA
reviewed by Sarah Burrell 25 Mar 2015
Sincere, clever, utterly uncontrived journey to raw discomfort
The show charts the protracted fracturing of a couple, their subtle bickering and reliance on one another. Through their dialogue a picture begins to form. They are young, travelling to New York on holiday. They talk about what they might do that day in the overly familiar way of couples that have been together for possibly too long. [more]

See also reviews by:
 James McKinnon
 Dione Joseph
 Matt Baker (TheatreScenes: The Auckland Theatre Blog);

BBEALS at Maidment, Auckland
reviewed by Sarah Knox 25 Mar 2015
All hail Jenny: Bbeals at the Maidment
The Footnote and Danses en L’R dancers are generous with their energy and committed in their performance. They are slick, rehearsed and look great in legwarmers. Manu Reynolds gives an epic farewell performance. Over his years with Footnote Manu has grown into a fearless mover with a strong presence, who should be comfortable on any international stage. But for me Emma Dellabarca is the standout performer of the evening, the underdog of the company, but with an unassuming and mature authenticity in her performance that is satisfying to watch. [more]

See also reviews by:
 Georgia Davenport
 Hahna Briggs (DANZ Magazine);
 Julia Harvie

TINY DEATHS at BATS Theatre, The Propellor Stage, 1 Kent Tce, Wellington
reviewed by Charlotte Simmonds 25 Mar 2015
This show is important
I am not even eager to call it a feminist show. Certainly, we do spend 90 minutes listening to women speak uninterrupted by men, which almost passes the Bechdel test, but as the show consists solely of monologues with no dialogue, the Bechdel test cannot really be applied here. [more]


THE GOOD NEWS at BATS Theatre, 1 Kent Tce, Wellington
reviewed by Jo Blick 25 Mar 2015
Seamless ensemble ring bells
Luckily there’s no group sing-a-long in The Good News and it’s only a religious show in that the subject matter is religion. The polo shirts are a red herring and the three energetic performers – Amy Griffin-Browne, Harriet Hughes and James Cain – take us through some rather bizarre and wonderful re-workings of bible stories, utilising a fine supporting cast of stuffed toys and some rather fetching false beards. [more]


SLEEP/WAKE at La Mama, Ellen Stewart Theatre, 66 E. 4th St, NYC, USA
reviewed by Alison Walls 25 Mar 2015
Poetic, skillful and compelling
Difficult to pin down as a theatre piece, Sleep/Wake seems closer to visual — or rather sensory – art, but it is nothing if not atmospheric. The collaboration with Philippa Gander of the Sleep/Wake Research Centre at Massey University sleep is primarily apparent in the introductory section where the Orator (Arthur Meek) explains how sleep patterns are monitored and what research has revealed thus far. [more]

See also reviews by:
 Lyne Pringle
 Helen Sims (The Lumiere Reader);
 Natalie Dowd
 Raewyn Whyte (New Zealand Herald);

[PRESENCE] at Turtle Lake, Hamilton Gardens, Hamilton
reviewed by Debbie Bright 23 Mar 2015
Calming, thought-provoking, enigmatic, beautiful
All dancers move slowly to the stage. Sound, dance and lighting change, but still hypnotically slow, continuous, haunting. Individuals in a group, slowly evolving, intertwining, yet with individual flavour, style and colour. Strength, control, and unity of movement, sound, vision and intent; individuals contributing to the whole. The lights move slowly, independently or together, changing colour, dynamic and atmosphere, as the day grows darker. All have presence. [more]


JAMES NOKISE IN SO–SO GANGSTA at La Mama First Floor Theatre, 74a E. 4th St, NYC, USA
reviewed by Alison Walls 22 Mar 2015
Profoundly satirises fear-based power
A fairly even mix of Americans and New Zealanders have braved the snow, slush, and wind to hear James Nokise expound in La MaMa’s small black box theatre on just what it is to be So So Gangsta. With such an audience, culture is inevitably going to offer both a point of interest and a challenge. [more]

See also reviews by:
 Hannah Smith
 Patrick Davies

SIX BAD ARTHOUSE PLAYS at Meteor Theatre, Hamilton
reviewed by Liza Kire 21 Mar 2015
Brilliant with something for everyone
Earth without art is just eh. Something so true and shown through the skillful and witty words spoken and performed by the small cast of Apocalypse Lounge’s Six Bad Arthouse Plays. The Meteor theatre in Hamilton has once again shown the beauty of blackbox theatre in an intimate performance that speaks to the generation we all co-exist with now. [more]

See also reviews by:
 Brenda Rae Kidd
 John Smythe

Chat Back
"hear, hear, Lyne.  Couldn't put my finger on it but agree that there was something lacking in this show w..." - Jo Hilder   [read full comment]

"Hi! Thanks for the review and for the lovely kind words!  Just to be clear I directed, designed and prod..." - Freya Desmarais   [read full comment]

"Kia ora Tania,Thank you very much for your review. A few points I wish to make in response to your review.1.&n..." - Emma Feather Shaw   [read full comment]

"I should add a caveat, however. There is an extended joke in the performance - concerning a 'bubbly' young wom..." - Jonathan Kingston-Smith   [read full comment]

"Please note: Paintball Corp has a NO ALCOHOL policy (which includes ‘pre-loading’) for the safety ..." - Editor   [read full comment]

"Agreed, a fantastic night out. Even the small audience was laughing itself silly, me included. In WELLINGTON! ..." - Maryanne Cathro   [read full comment]

"BLAIR PEACH. Blair Peach was murdered by the London police Special Patrol Group in April, 1979, at an anti-naz..." - Dean Parker   [read full forum post]

"Hi - thanks for the review. I just wanted to confirm we did in fact finish just a couple of minutes after 4, ..." - Lyndon Hood   [read full comment]

"Thank you Maria - corrected now." - Editor   [read full comment]

"Just FYI the actor is called Tayo Aluko." - Maria WILLIAMS   [read full comment]

"That's embarrassing Jerome - apologies. Fixed now." - Editor   [read full comment]

"It's Jerome Chandrahasen, but still, thanks for the kind words!" - Jerome Chandrahasen   [read full comment]


News
21 Mar 2015 - Binge Culture is currently in New York City on our first ever international tour. We are taking part in New Zealand New Performance Festival at La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club. We want to let you know that we are live streaming our six hour durational performance Break Up [We Need to Talk] on Saturday 21 March 1.30pm-7.30pm EST/ 21 March 5:30pm-11:30pm GMT/ Sunday 22 March at 6.30am- 12.30pm NZT at our website, www.bingeculture.co.nz.   [more]

18 Mar 2015 - Celebrating our 25th year of creativity and chaos! 25th NZ Fringe Festival was celebrated Sunday 15th March with an Awards Ceremony at St Peter's on Willis Street, acknowledging the hard work, creativity and bravery of all participants - and encouraging them to push themselves and think out side the box for NZ Fringe 2016.   [more]

14 Mar 2015 - HUMOROUS ARTS TRUST (Wellington) SEEKS PART TIME ADMINISTRATOR The Humorous Arts Trust is a charitable trust helping grow and support the Wellington comedy community through workshops and regular gigs, including our open mic night Raw Meat Monday and the Wellington Raw Comedy Quest. We are bringing on board a part time administrator...   [more]

6 Mar 2015 - ADAM NZ PLAY AWARD 2015 The Adam NZ Play Award celebrates the best in new writing for the theatre. Playmarket is excited to announce the shortlisted plays and playwrights for 2015.   [more]

5 Mar 2015 - AUDITIONS IN CHRISTCHURCH FOR BOTH COURT THEATRE AND DUNEDIN’S FORTUNE THEATRE, 24 MARCH 2015 Auditions for The Court Theatre in Christchurch in conjunction with The Fortune Theatre from Dunedin will be happening at The Court Theatre on Tuesday 24 March 2015. Here's your chance to be seen by both companies. (The Fortune Theatre are also holding their own auditions on Wednesday 11 March, also in conjunction with The Court Theatre).   [more]

3 Mar 2015 - AUCKLAND FRINGE AWARDS CELEBRATE A CRACKER OF A SEASON. Running over a vibrant three weeks, Auckland Fringe and it’s participating companies and venues, have presented the city with a diverse programme of Theatre, Dance, Comedy and Music. Sadly it all came to a close on Sunday, and was celebrated at the highly anticipated 2015 Auckland Fringe Awards. Hosted by renowned taste-makers The Basement Theatre, the best of the high quality programme were recognized with awards hosted handsomely by Eli Mathewson and Hamish Parkinson.   [more]

2 Mar 2015 - BATS THEATRE LIMITED STAB 2015 Producer Fixed Term Contract POSITION DESCRIPTION POSITION PURPOSE The STAB commission is an integral part of the annual BATS Theatre programme. STAB originated in 1995 from BATS’ desire to initiate a commission that allowed theatre artists to experiment in a supportive environment. The STAB commission is funded by Creative New Zealand and commissioned by BATS, with BATS acting as the Executive Producer. The purpose of this position is to be the Wellington based producer for the project that has received the 2015 major STAB commission. This project is a collaboration between BATS, Long Cloud Youth Theatre and Canberra Youth Theatre.   [more]

28 Feb 2015 - Barking Gecko Theatre Company ARTISTIC DIRECTOR Barking Gecko Theatre Company is a professional Western Australian theatre company specialising in productions for children, teens and families that tour nationally and internationally. Barking Gecko is known for developing and presenting ambitious, surprising and critically acclaimed productions for audiences from rural towns through to the Sydney Opera House.   [more]