New Zealand theatre reviews, performace reviews and performing arts directory

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Adam NZ Play Award 2015 Winners Announced [more]
Auckland Fringe Awards 2015

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PANZ 10 Minute PLAY COMPETITION 2015, submit by 30/04 [more
Summer Shakespeare (Wellington) call for Directors, express interest by 15/5 [more]

Latest Theatre and Performance Reviews
THE BIG SHOW 2015 at Comedy Chamber, Town Hall, THE EDGE, Auckland
reviewed by Kate Ward-Smythe 28 Apr 2015
Guaranteed great night out
The three English and one Welsh stand up comedian who make up The Big Show, are vastly different in style, content and on stage energy, making for a satisfying evening of comedy, full of variety and laughs. [more]

OLD MOUT CIDER FIRST LAUGHS at Opera House, Wellington
reviewed by Simon Howard 28 Apr 2015
A tantalising tasting platter of what’s to come
Old Mout Cider First Laughs kicks off the New Zealand International Comedy Festival by offering Wellington audiences the chance to see six minutes of material from fifteen comedians, split evenly between domestic and international performers. With a mix of well-known New Zealand comedians alongside unknown quantities from abroad (primarily the UK), there is always an air of anticipation at which unexpected comedian will steal the show. [more]

WHITE CLOUD at Turner Centre, Kerikeri
reviewed by Alan Scott 27 Apr 2015
Shared journeys
Tim Finn’s one-man show, White Cloud, promises more than it delivers. Using song, narrative, film and photographs it explores the question of what it means to be Pakeha. Devised and written by both Finn and playwright Ken Duncum, it traverses the lives of their immigrant ancestors and more recent twentieth century family history, and to a small extent Finn’s own progression from Te Awamutu boy to performing artist. [more]

See also reviews by:
 Alison Embleton
 Gail Tresidder

THE KISS INSIDE at Regent Theatre (Dunedin), Dunedin
reviewed by val smith 27 Apr 2015
A gift comprising absurdities and contradictions
What Douglas is talking to us about, and the way in which he does so, will not be done justice by an analytical rendering of ideas through language. The only written response then, that feels appropriate to this work, is to simply thank Douglas Wright for the gifting of The Kiss Inside to a New Zealand public, and for his continued efforts to make his productions come to life. So, I thank Douglas for his energy, and his honesty. I thank him for opening a doorway into his life, his inner journeying, and for a view into his very being. [more]

See also reviews by:
 Dione Joseph
 Jenny Stevenson
 Francesca Horsley (DANZ Magazine);
 Bernadette Rae (NZ Herald);

TWO DAY PLAYS 2015 at BATS Theatre, The Propellor Stage, 1 Kent Tce, Wellington
reviewed by John Smythe 27 Apr 2015
An energising celebration of the collective creative spirit
There is nothing like a deadline and a few constraints to get the creative juices flowing. Over the past four weekends 19 short plays have been created and performed within 48 hours, each embracing the requirement to incorporate specified elements and use assigned props. [more]

ADRIENNE TRUSCOTT'S ASKING FOR IT at The Basement Studio, Lower Greys Ave, Auckland
reviewed by Nik Smythe 27 Apr 2015
Bottomless capacity for thought-provoking humour
The woman of the hour enters in her obviously-fake blonde wig, denim jacket, heels and nothing-in-between. Adrienne Truscott’s nicely groomed bare nether-regions have the potential to function equally as a socio-sexually political statement and a salacious selling point. [more]

DON JUAN at Circa Two, Wellington
reviewed by John Smythe 26 Apr 2015
Cleverly crafted fun
The ensemble nature of this Leo Gene Peters-directed production – played in sexy French accents by Maaka Pohatu, Andrew Paterson, Susie Berry, Comfrey Sanders and Jonathan Price but constantly referencing Wellington in the here and now – renders Don Juan himself a rather elusive character. And those he encounters are even more two-dimensional. So the complex and contrapuntal intricacies of sexual desire and social conventions – let alone the morality, amorality and torments of addiction – are not up for thorough investigation or interrogation here. Or are they? [more]

See also reviews by:
 Laurie Atkinson [Reproduced with permission of Fairfax Media]

GUY WILLIAMS - YOU CAN SENSE THE DESPERATION at Montecristo - Upstairs, Auckland
reviewed by Chloe Baynes 26 Apr 2015
Plenty of laughs and thought-provoking social commentary
Nuanced interactions with the internet culture of our time prove Guy to be clued in to our relationship to social media. Particularly standing out are parodied inspirational insta-quotes, life hacks and twitter drafts, drawing laughs all round at the cheeky, absurd and playfully inappropriate. [more]

See also reviews by:
 Simon Howard

NEXT BIG THINGS HOSTED BY BEN HURLEY (2015) at Q Theatre, Rangatira, Auckland
reviewed by Raewyn Whyte 26 Apr 2015
A richly variegated array of teasers
Ten guest slots are filled by an array of "talented up and comers … comedians you're gonna want to see again." Each has a bare 6 minutes to impress and entice us to buy tickets to their show, and Hurley keeps them strictly to time, so there's a cracking pace overall. [more]

reviewed by Alan Scott 26 Apr 2015
Rocked by the noise of love and the music of life
As the star-crossed lovers Eric and Rose, Todd Emerson and Colleen Davis are perfectly cast and deliver superb performances. They face the audience and never each other. Though separated by space, with eyes out front, you feel and hear the intimacy of conversation sparking between them, at first playful and then loving. They both have big singing voices ... [more]

See also reviews by:
 Stephen Austin
 Simon Wilson (MetroMag online);
 James Wenley (TheatreScenes: The Auckland Theatre Blog);
 Paul Simei-Barton (New Zealand Herald);
 Penny Dodd
 Mark Houlahan
 Pip Harker

ROSE MATAFEO - FINALLY DEAD at The Basement, Auckland
reviewed by Kathryn van Beek 26 Apr 2015
Gripping. Amusing. Hilarious. Original.
As Rose explores her fears around death she gives an impression of Audrey Hepburn as a flatmate, tells us what she doesn’t want her last words to be ... At one point she reprimands herself, saying, “You charged these people money to watch you have an hour-long panic attack?” [more]

reviewed by Nik Smythe 26 Apr 2015
Politely confrontational exchanges and frenzied rants
Campbell hits the ground running to the sound of rambunctious drumming and within sixty seconds has acquainted himself with a couple in the front row. Five minutes later he’s scored a tequila out of them, which he reckons hasn’t happened before but being a stand-up comedian there’s no need or expectation to believe anything he says. [more]

Chat Back
"Thanks for coming Laurie. I am glad you enjoyed it." - Susannah Donovan   [read full comment]

"I went to the show and left at half time. Many of the people around me (including those who stayed to the end)..." - Christine Brooks   [read full comment]

"Thanks for coming John. I am glad you enjoyed it. " - Susannah Donovan   [read full comment]

"Last night at the Two Day Plays grand final, the two best teams from each heat as decided by the audience and ..." - Dean Hewison   [read full forum post]

"Points taken and thank you from me too, Jen, for taking the time ... I do note that the examples you cite are ..." - John Smythe   [read full comment]

"Yes! Yes! Yes! Jen - I so agree with how you've characterised the approach to improv. Watching improvisers str..." - Christine Brooks   [read full comment]

"The breaking of three rules was simply the improvisors finding the game of the scene and heightening each othe..." - Jennifer O'Sullivan   [read full comment]

"Hi Christine and Jen I realise my refering back to the RETURN TO SENDER format was not clear. The full sentenc..." - John Smythe   [read full comment]

"Hi John, I agree with everything Jen has written in her comment above. I'd like to add my thoughts on your co..." - Christine Brooks   [read full comment]

"Hi John, thanks for taking the time to review this show - we really are fortunate in Wellington that improv sh..." - Jennifer O'Sullivan   [read full comment]

"See also:- http:/..." - Dr Jonathan W Marshall   [read full comment]

"Thanks Patrick and Theatreview for being available to review the Raw Comedy Quest. The Humorous Arts Trust wou..." - Humorous Arts Trust   [read full comment]

22 Apr 2015 - CALL FOR DIRECTORS The Summer Shakespeare Trust (Wellington) is seeking a Director for the 2016 Summer Shakespeare production Directors will be asked to choose from one of the following plays: Henry VIII | Julius Caesar | Love's Labour's Lost | The Comedy of Errors | Much Ado About Nothing   [more]

31 Mar 2015 - ARTS TO BE TRANSFERRED TO THE MINISTRY FOR PRIMARY INDUSTRIES Theatreview has discovered the Government plans to transfer oversight of the Arts and Creative Industries to the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI). This will apply to all arts and creative products that originate in New Zealand – i.e. where the Intellectual Property (IP) is held by New Zealanders.   [more]

28 Mar 2015 - ADAM NZ PLAY AWARD 2015 WINNERS ANNOUNCED New Zealand’s dark history and violent present revealed in award-winning plays. PLAYMARKET is pleased to announce the ADAM NZ PLAY AWARD winners for 2015: Anders Falstie-Jensen for Centrepoint and Hone Kouka for Bless the Child. The Adam NZ Play Award recognises and celebrates the best in new writing for the theatre. Director of Playmarket Murray Lynch announced the win at Circa Theatre on 28 March 2015 alongside four other special award winners.   [more]

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,   [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]