Clarence Street Theatre, Hamilton

16/04/2012 - 16/04/2012

Opera House, Wellington

14/04/2012 - 14/04/2012

ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre, Auckland

18/04/2012 - 18/04/2012

Baycourt - Addison Theatre, Tauranga

17/04/2012 - 17/04/2012

Bruce Mason Centre, Auckland

21/04/2012 - 21/04/2012

Production Details


The TV show Ben 10 is viewed in over 2.9 million Australasian homes making it one of Cartoon Network’s most popular daily programmes. Following the worldwide success of the stage show BEN 10 LIVE, Life Like Touring are proud to announce they are bringing the latest live action production – Cartoon Network’s BEN 10 LIVE: Time Machine – to New Zealand this April school holidays.

“Since Life Like Touring first launched Ben 10 Live: Time Machine in Australia, the sheer volume of requests from young New Zealanders was staggering. NZ Ben 10 fans have lobbied hard through Facebook to bring BEN 10 LIVE to their shores,” says Executive Producer, Luke Gallagher. “You asked for it, now here it is! We are very excited to bring this quality live production to NZ.”

In Cartoon Network’s BEN 10 LIVE: Time Machine, fans get to see their favourite characters from all three of Cartoon Network’s hit shows’ Ben 10, Ben 10 Alien Force and Ben 10 Ultimate Alien come together in one live theatre event with the coolest costumes, rad stunts, awesome effects and heaps of laughs for the whole family.

Cartoon Network’s BEN 10 LIVE: Time Machine sees our hero Ben Tennyson on an adventure through time and space to keep the Omnitrix and the Ultimatrix safe from the clutches of his foes.  Featuring the number one superstar himself, Ben Tennyson, his cousin Gwen and Grandpa Max, this action-packed show also includes Ben’s alien superheroes Four Arms, Diamondhead, Swampfire, Big Chill and one of his awesome new Ultimate Aliens unleashing their powers live on stage!  Naturally, fans will also get to see love-to-hate characters Vilgax, the Highbreed Commander, the DNAliens and The Forever Knights.

Cartoon Network’s BEN 10 LIVE: Time Machine sees Ben Tennyson on a mission to save the past, present and future of the universe!  Did somebody say, ‘Hero Time’?  Don’t miss BEN 10 LIVE in NZ!


Saturday 14 April:  Opera House, WELLINGTON– 0800 TICKETEK

Monday 16 April:  Clarence St Theatre, HAMILTON – 0800 TICKETEK

Tuesday 17 April:  Baycourt Arts Centre, TAURANGA – 07 577 7188

Wednesday 18 April:  ASB Theatre, the Edge,AUCKLAND– 0800 BUY TICKETS

Saturday 21 April:  Bruce Mason Centre, TAKAPUNA, AKLD – 09 970 9700



Ben 10 is one of the leading licensed animation brands inNew Zealandand one of the most popular animated series on Cartoon Network, seen by over 2.9 million homes inAustralasia.  The franchise launched in 2007 and to date incorporates three series (Ben 10, Ben 10 Alien Force and Ben 10 Ultimate Alien) alongside two live action motion picture movies and a live action arena stage show (BEN 10 LIVE) which premiered in September 2010.   The Ben 10 franchise continues to grow and is worth more than $100 million in global retail sales per year with over 10 million units of merchandise sold since launch. To date, there are more than 45 strategic licensing partners for the franchise, including Funtastic Toys, Madman Entertainment, McDonald’s, Parragon Publishing, Casco Blu and Bandi-Namco.


Cartoon Network Enterprises, a division of Cartoon Network, works towards driving long-term value for the Network and its properties such as Ben 10, Ben 10: Alien Force, Gwen, The Powerpuff Girls, Powerpuff Girls Z, Chowder and The Secret Saturdays.  The division is specifically responsible for setting up new businesses leveraging the equity of the characters via consumer products, promotional licensing, home videos, interactive games, publishing, themed entertainment and events.  Cartoon Network Enterprises works with a host of partners in the Asia-Pacific region, including Bandai, Mattel, D3 Publishers and Singapore Airlines among others.  Cartoon Network is a subsidiary of Turner Broadcasting System Asia Pacific Inc., which is a member of Turner Broadcasting Systems Inc., a Time Warner company, inAsia.  Time Warner is a major producer of news and entertainment products around the world and is a leading content provider in the basic cable industry.


Life Like Touring have a background in touring quality children’s brands around the Asia-Pacific region, working closely with the Entertainment Store Group who hold the exclusive live entertainment license to over 20 international children’s brands. Current tours includeSESAME STREETPRESENTS ELMO’S WORLD TOUR, SCOOBY-LIVE! MUSICAL MYSTERIES and CARTOON NETWORK’s BEN 10 LIVE: TIME MACHINE. Past tours include NICK JR.’s DORA THE EXPLORER LIVE! SEARCH FOR THE CITY OF LOST TOYS and YO GABBA GABBA! LIVE. ESG toured DOROTHY THE DINOSAUR’S DANCE PARTY throughout Australia and New Zealand on behalf of The Wiggles for many years, and produced successful tours for THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF MR. MEN and the ABC/BBC co-production Funtime With Friends with an array of children’s brands including The Tweenies, Bill & Ben, Postman Pat, Spot, Andy Pandy and Fireman Sam live on stage.  

Saving the world and selling the merchandise

Review by Jo Hodgson 15th Apr 2012

I’m not sure if a review is needed to fill a show like Ben 10 Live: Time Machine, judging by the sea of mostly boys with an average age of 7 or 8 with their Mums, Dads or Grandparents, waiting with excitement for the first show to start this morning. The appeal of superheroes and fisticuffs between good and evil just keeps on selling.

I have to admit to feeling a little apprehensive as to how such an action-packed frenetic cartoon could be turned into a cohesive live show but, accompanied by my 5 year old friend Thomas, we are soon thrust into the world of ‘Hero Time’ and I go with it.

Ben Tennyson is a 10 year old boy who has the Omnitrix watch which can turn him into alien superheros such as Swampfire, Dimondhead, Fourarms and the Big Chill to save the world. With help from his cousin Gwen and their Granpa Max, he battles foes like Vilgax and The Highbreeds to name a few. 

This particular production joins together all 3 of the Ben 10 series in a race against time through past present and future where Ben (aged 15 from Ben 10 Alien force) and Ben (aged 16 from Ben 10 Ultimate Alien) help Ben 10 (on the eve of his 11th birthday) to defeat and thwart the Highbreed Commander’s ultimate destruction of the world of humans, using the Commander’s own powerful Uniglass Time Machine against him.

The storyline from writers Anton Berezin and Theresa Borg (also director) is stereotypical in the good versus evil stakes but the collective superhero power needed from all 3 Ben 10’s to save the day gives it more of a problem solving and collaborative feel.

A multipurpose interactive moveable screen is used for special effects where laser blasts, magical cyclones and time vortices are screened as well as used for entrances and exits.  These light shows (from lighting designer Keith Tucker and Video and sound designer Brenton Van Vliet) certainly have the young audience riveted. The soundscape is full bore and way too loud to start with (but improved in the 2nd half), giving the superhero/baddie battles the added intensity needed. Nice voice effects on all the Aliens too.

The costumes are cleverly constructed (DT Entertainment/EXIM) and realise the forms of the cartoon characters well, although some are a bit clunky and not overly easy to manoeuvre, so make the fighting scenes a little comedic and WWF like – which actually makes the fights a little less gratuitous than the more visual violence in the cartoons.

Maybe the human characters of Ben (at various ages), Gwen and Granpa could have been more human, i.e. seeing their faces and expressions and not quite so cartoonish, leaving the Aliens to be the out of this world characters they are. The actors had to over act with their bodies somewhat because of their over sized head masks with no facial expression, which made me feel the age appeal wouldn’t be much beyond 10yrs.

The choreography (Katie Ditchburn) is well executed, particularly that of the droids with some excellent dance and acrobatic fight moves.

Its nice to see a positive girl role model in Gwen, who looks out for Ben when he gets a bit ‘hero happy’. She has her own special magical powers which also save the day and Ben finally, albeit grudgingly, admits they are pretty cool.

Ben and Gwen do, however, bicker and name-call which raises the question of whether writers should mimic what happens in real life for these ages, believing kids will identify with the characters and find humour in it, or find other ways of modelling behaviour.

A 20 minute interval in the middle of what would have been an hour and 10 minute total show is unnecessary. Cynically I’d say it is there to sell the merchandise this whole industry revolves around but perhaps the actors also need a break from lugging around those huge costumes.

All-in-all a successful outing and by the appreciative chatter of the children around me – the feeling sounded mutual.

Thoughts on the show from Thomas (5): “The end battle was the best and I liked the alien that had sticky out eyes like a Hammerhead.” 


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