September 18, 2017


NZ THEATRE MONTH – September 2018  

Watch Video Here

Iconic and much-beloved NZ playwright Roger Hall CNZM QSO is proud to confirm NZ THEATRE MONTH for September 2018 and is calling all theatres and creators to get involved. The aim is to showcase NZ Theatre in all its forms.  Inclusion in the campaign will be FREE for all presenters, promotors and creators, with the aim to increase public awareness of not only the amount of New Zealand Theatre taking place all around us all the time, but the quality of that theatre. As their slogan says, it’s about ‘celebrating and elevating New Zealand Theatre.’ 

Hall says, “Theatre is performed at the mighty Civic and the intimate Garnett Road Café; in bars, basements and buses; in purpose-built theatres, community centres and school halls. All over the country, from Northland to Invercargill.  Thousands of people go; and thousands take part.  But why isn’t there a dedicated day, week or month to celebrate it?”

The history of New Zealand theatre is long, rich and storied; there are literally hundreds of productions that go on around the country every year, of all kinds: plays, musicals, devised work, physical theatre. The month is not only about celebrating those, but honouring the long history of theatre in this country that dates all the way back to 1848!  Hall (and others) have been championing this cause for a few years now, but in September 2018 it will finally come to fruition.

The main aim for NZ THEATRE MONTH is that as many theatres as possible will perform a New Zealand work during that month. Hall has confirmed involvement from professional companies from across the country to take part, including Auckland Theatre Company (Auckland), Circa Theatre (Wellington), Centrepoint (Palmerston North), The Court (Christchurch) and The Fortune (Dunedin). Community theatres across the country are also scheduled to take part, with many already committing to perform New Zealand works during this time.  “Even if a theatre hasn’t scheduled a New Zealand work, we still want them to take part. There are many ways to elevate our theatre with talks, debates, and displays.” says Hall.

Hall also says, “The fact is that theatre in New Zealand has never been so strong! The amount of work produced, the range of venues and the number of people actively involved has never been so high. Audience numbers are strong yet I can sense little national public awareness or pride in what we do and what we have accomplished.”

Hall has worked closely on NZTM with Malcolm Calder, well-known in arts management circles. The Trust is still a fledgling body at this early stage, but will become a registered charitable trust in the near future. The pair are in the process of reaching out to those who make NZ theatre, and of devising partnerships and goodwill while putting a substantial and effective promotional strategy and campaign together. A comprehensive website will also be launched to support all participating theatres and presenters.

Hall also sees the month as a chance to celebrate our theatre heroes, local as well as national, dead as well as living. “Talk to many young people in theatre, and they know very little of all this. But is that their fault? Why don’t they know? Because we don’t tell them. We don’t seem to be proud of our history. Or even of our present.  We don’t have a national voice. It’s time we did.”

New Zealand Theatre Month – Celebrating and Elevating New Zealand Theatre

The month will run nationwide from 1st – 30th of September, 2018
All Theatre Initiatives will be invited to present in this time. 

For interviews Roger Hall at

Check out the video to see messages of support from the theatre community. Featuring: Oscar Kightley, Ali Harper, Craig Hall, Sara Wiseman, Dai Henwood, Michael Hurst, Jennifer Ward-Lealand, Bruce Philips, Alison Quigan and the cast of A Doll’s House – Sophie Hambleton, Kali Kopae, Katherine McRae, Tony Black, Arthur Meek and Francis Biggs.  

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