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PERFECT PLACE at The Basement, Lower Greys Ave
reviewed by Nik Smythe 22 Oct 2014
Middle-of-the-road immersion
The goal is not joy or happiness as too much of a good thing is deemed unproductive; instead the catchword is ‘contentment’, the ideal middle-ground between misery and ecstasy – as explained in Ernest’s enlightening daily regulation seminars. The relentless pastels perfectly illustrate this policy: not too dull, not too bright. [more]

IF I ONLY HAD A HEART at The Basement, Lower Greys Ave
reviewed by James Wenley (TheatreScenes: The Auckland Theatre Blog) 22 Oct 2014
Affairs of the Heart
It soon becomes apparent just how carefully Tindell has programmed the songs to speak to one another and take up different positions, surmounting the initial gimmick. This is helped considerably by the interpretative talent of performers Jessie Cassin, Cherie Moore, and Rebecca Wright. [more]

IF I ONLY HAD A HEART at The Basement, Lower Greys Ave
reviewed by Dione Joseph 22 Oct 2014
Almost offensively safe
A few feeble attempts at raunchiness (aimed almost exclusively at one individual in the front row) doesn’t quite raise the sex appeal or scandal-o-meter to any mind-blowing heights and the little choreography included is less than average. It may also just be opening night nerves but as a group there seems to be a distinct absence of comraderie during the night and an obvious lack of team showmanship for the ensemble pieces. This was all a real pity because the voices of Rebecca Wright, Cherie Moore and Jessie Cassin are very good. [more]

Nelson Arts Festival 2014
THE PAPER CINEMA’S ODYSSEY at Theatre Royal
reviewed by Janet Whittington 22 Oct 2014
Tight, talented, professional, unexpected, special
The drawings are clear and detailed. The movements of the figures, landscapes and special effects are plausible to the tiniest movement. Together with Imogen Charleston he presents a unique live animation style. Rowling even draws the first few scenes with an ink and nib pen to lead the audience gently from reality into his world of Homer’s Odyssey. [more]

Tempo 2014
FOR THE LOVE OF DANCE at Q Theatre, 305 Queen St
reviewed by Kerry Wallis 22 Oct 2014
A world of love with bells and character finesse
In the first work, Romeo and Juliet, Amuthini Prasanna and Gopika Gnanakumar enter the stage in a beautiful fusion of cultures as they were traditional dress but show us the Shakespearean world by holding masks. AV shows different scenes within the dance and for a moment each individual character has an internal monologue expressed by voiceover talent in a spotlight. Both dancers are highly expressive and dance well together and when they have solo material. A strong duet with both dancers using the stage well. [more]

HELA at Q Theatre Loft, 305 Queen St
reviewed by Vanessa Byrnes 22 Oct 2014
A tragic, marvellous, fascinating, true story told with lucidity and ease
Onashile’s dramatization – based on Rebecca Skloot’s highly-praised The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – breathes life into the story of a woman who died too young, loved dancing, and who was possibly overwhelmed by the medical jargon of the black section of the John Hopkins Hospital where she died some months after the initial cancer diagnosis. Overall, though, it is the issue of informed consent that drives the narrative. [more]

I’LL BE FINE at BATS Theatre (Out Of Site), Cnr Cuba & Dixon
reviewed by John Smythe 22 Oct 2014
Promising
Playwright Ben Wilson is quick to declare his inspirations for this his first play were Eli Kent’s The Intricate Art of Actually Caring (which he saw) and Vivienne Plumb’s The Cape (which he read). He and Script Supervisor /Director Ryan Knighton have assembled many of the potentially potent ingredients of both ‘road trip’ plays and put them together in their own way without really understanding how those particular recipes work in principle to produce compelling performance. [more]

Christchurch Fringe 2014
SURI VS SHILOH at The Office at CBD Bar, 208 Madras St
reviewed by Erin Harrington 22 Oct 2014
High energy, inventive, outlandish
The show opens like a sitcom: in the not-too-distant future, BFFs Suri Cruise (Susannah Smith-Roy), professional clothes horse and A-list actress, and Shiloh Jolie-Pitt (Phoebe Borwick), social justice crusader and (allegedly?) reluctant celebrity, are young adults trying to navigate their way in a celebrity culture populated by burnout and screw ups, while sitting firmly in the shadows of their über-famous parents. [more]

Photo by Paul McLaughlin
ISAAC’S EYE at Circa Two
reviewed by Laurie Atkinson (The Dominion Post) 21 Oct 2014
A provocative peep into Newton’s mind
In Hnath’s play the upstart is the ambitious Newton, eager to be famous and admitted to The Royal Society. While the established genius of the times, the now largely forgotten Robert Hooke, who has been described as England’s Leonardo, warily watches and attends Newton’s scary experiments on light by sticking a pin into his own tear duct. [more]

THE STATUS OF BEING at Meteor Theatre
reviewed by Debbie Bright 21 Oct 2014
Extreme physicality, active questioning
Through confrontation and humor, attention is focussed on the power of choice within ourselves over how we respond to the world, an awakening of decision-making inherent within our own views, and empowering sense of responsibility for ourselves and our planet. Ultimately, The Status of Being questions an engineered sense of control. After all, how much choice do we really have in our choices? [more]
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