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Night of the Queer

The Night of the Queer | Auckland Pride

The Night of the Queer is guaranteed to become a calendar event. Curated by James Luck (performer, choreographer and director) this hour-long extravaganza was bold, risque and deliciously satisfying. Intimate tables, fairylights and simmering acts by talented performers took the stage by storm. Ringmaster of a consummate troupe (including circus acts, soul singers, pole performers and burlesque artists), Luck curated…

Midsummers Night's Dream

A Midsummer Night’s Dream | Pop-up Globe

Arguably William Shakespeare’s most famous comedy, A Midsummer Night’s Dream is the perfect primer for summer theatre in Aotearoa. Packed with thwarted lovers fleeing city boundaries, woodland faeries engaging in all sorts of love-potion shenanigans, and conveniently, a play-within-a-play by a group of enthusiastic, if untrained, amateurs; the close to three-hour-long production makes for a perfect balmy night out beneath…

Sister Act

Sister Act — the musical

Twenty-five years ago, Whoopi Goldberg became an international sensation because of a low-budget-feel-good film called Sister Act. The story followed the adventures of a lounge singer, who unintentionally, becomes a witness to a murder by her gangster boyfriend. The plot twist? To keep their star witness alive, the police stow the diva in the least likely of places: a rundown…

Kiss the Sky

Kiss the Sky | New Zealand Dance Company

If Matariki is regarded as the perfect time to start new collaborations and unexpected conversations, the stars have clearly aligned for the New Zealand Dance Company. It’s become the first major New Zealand dance company to commission a Korean artist to make work here (although a fellow Korean, Unitec graduate Min Kyoung Lee, has presented several of her works here).…

Te Manawa

Te Manawa | Hawaiki Tu

Faced by the elements, it was a relief to escape the rain and settle in at Auckland Theatre Company’s new whare for Te Manawa, one of this Matariki season’s early theatre performances. On a stage exquisitely lit with cold blue light, we could see in the shadows the towering images of the Nga Atua, the gods. The audience was clearly…

Te Puhi

Te Puhi | Waititi Productions

Te Puhi, written by Cian Elyse Waiti, delves deep into family politics against the background of an iconic moment in our history: the crowning of the first Maori beauty queen in New Zealand. It’s Rotorua in the early 1960s and Hineruhi Johnson (Roimata Fox) has been prepping her baby sister, Te Puhi (Taupunakohe Tocker) for the Miss New Zealand pageant.…

Tiki Tanne Mahuta

Tiki Taane Mahuta

It’s been almost a decade in the making but watching the talents of composer and musician Tiki Taane and choreographer Tanemahuta Gray meld together is a sublime experience that’s worth the wait. The two hour long production weaves together aerial theatre, kapa haka, hip-hop, shadow theatre, ballet, martial arts, mau rakau, video projection and live music to share a multi-generational…

Carmen and L'Arlésienne

Carmen and L’Arlésienne | The Royal New Zealand Ballet

The Royal New Zealand Ballet (RNZB) has started the year by bringing two of choreographer Roland Petit’s best-known story ballets to audiences across the country. Carmen and L’Arlésienne offer a sumptuous night with extraordinary choreography, exquisite lighting and the familiar, if somewhat cliched, trend of obsessive love. In Carmen, post-war Paris spins into focus with a compressed version of Georges…

Horror - Auckland Arts Festival

Horror | Auckland Arts Festival

Horror films are a genre unto their own but how well do our favourite spine-chilling moments translate to live performance? It’s a challenge Swedish creator Jakop Ahlbom has taken up with gusto. Horror, an 80-minute stage show, tackles a number of the traditional sub-genres with a kaleidoscopic range of stunning visual and sound elements. Bright red raincoats, swinging axes, shattering…

Awa - Auckland Arts Festival

Awa | Auckland Arts Festival

A contemporary performance that stretches across multiple genres, Awa was created through a collaboration between Atamira Dance Company, the Auckland Philharmonic Orchestra, the Auckland Chinese Philharmonic choir, guests dance artists from China, as well as Te Kura Kaupapa o te Kotuku’s children’s choir. At its core is a personal story. The memories of Moss Paterson, choreographer and artistic director of…

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