Theatreview™ (https://www.theatreview.org.nz) is operated by The Theatreview Trust. NZ Charities Commission Reg. No. CC45963.
To create and publish on-line reviews and archival records of professional performing arts.
The mission is to review the richly diverse array of professional performing arts throughout New Zealand, as constructive contribution to:
- the public in communities throughout Aotearoa New Zealand for whom the work is made and on whose behalf the critics write;
- the practitioners who create publicly available shows and need to see what they make reflected, in order to contribute to their professional development;
- the ongoing conversation of which reviews, comments and discussions are part; and
- the historical record of performing arts practice in Aotearoa New Zealand – a comprehensive, globally accessible and readily searchable on-line archive of the people, visions and places of those productions, and of those reviews and discussions.
Productions are identified and, when a production requests it, a review is commissioned. The reviews are then published and, with production details and any subsequent discussion round the review, archived on the website.
the patrons: Taiaroa Royal | Dawn Sanders ONZM, QSM
the Trustees: voluntary professionals from various areas of the performing arts sector, who look after the governance and overall administration. All of the Trustees share their time with other professional commitments. As at 15 January 2024, they are:
Bette Cosgrove, Chair (English teacher, former performing arts administrator)
Marjorie McKee, treasurer (actor, finance and graphics contractor)
John Smythe (writer, actor, playwright, theatre critic)
Dan Slevin (freelance writer, adviser on strategic planning, project manager)
Mitchell Manuel (actor, writer, digital graphic and textile designer)
Brigitte Knight (dance tutor, artistic director, critic, freelance adjudicator and choreographer)
Iosefa Enari, MNZM (dancer, choreographer, artistic director and educator)
the editorial team: arts professionals, who commission, edit and publish the reviews. Both share their time with other professional commitments
the associate editors: other arts professionals in the field, recruited by the editors as needed.
Associate Editor – Auckland Theatre: Lexie Matheson
Associate Editor – Dunedin Theatre: Lisa Warrington
Associate Editor – Christchurch Theatre: Julie McCloy
the reviewers: the editors recruit and support teams of voluntary reviewers nationwide, who have practical experience in the performing arts, have insight into relevant cultures, genres, generations, affiliations, identities and sexual orientation, and who –
- love the performing arts and understand what contributes (or otherwise) to quality and effectiveness;
- have open minds yet are not afraid to ‘call it as they see and feel it’;
- are appropriately assigned according to their genre expertise, cultural and gender identification, sexual preference and age demographic (especially when this is requested by producers); and
- can express themselves well in writing.
more about us
Theatreview was created by John Smythe and, with web designer Emily Walker-Wright, the website went live on 2 April 2006.
It carries reviews of professional theatre and dance performance throughout Aotearoa New Zealand,together with the visions, people and graphics of the productions, and news and discussions.
Genres reviewed include mainstream, classical, niche, circus, hiphop, children’s, opera, puppetry, festival works, youth, contemporary and populist, and cutting-edge, co-op and experimental. Reviewing also includes productions of full-time dance and drama schools, and major youth productions to honour coming talent.
The editorial team is paid nominally for their work as we secure funding. Associate Editors volunteer in some regions to keep our services available while funding is restricted.
Between 80 and 120 reviewers across Aotearoa New Zealand volunteer their time and skills, without payment other than receiving two complimentary tickets to the production they are reviewing. Financial payment to reviewers is an aspirational aim but requires sustained funding to support it.
Theatreview is often the only publication to review the work of emerging artists, Fringe shows, performance in the regions, return seasons by established artists and touring productions. It is often also the only platform for reviews of dance, including from well established companies and of works not just by emerging but also by established practitioners.
Theatreview is funded solely by grants and donations.
the finance and other figures
See the Charities Services reports CC45963