Te Auaha - Tapere Nui, 65 Dixon Street, Te Aro, Wellington

09/03/2021 - 11/03/2021

Production Details

To love and to cherish, to have and to hold, for better or for worse, till death do us part, here lies the story of Husband and Wife. One home, one salary, one couple.

Our scene begins with Husband and Wife moving into their new home. Belongings are unpacked while they dance together through the living room and settle in. A picture of a perfect life. Time passes. Husband arrives home late from a long day of work hoping to have a nice meal and a cuddle with his Wife, but reality has different plans. He is welcomed with a cold silence… His cheek now burns as he rubs the mark she left and reflects on what new colours he sees in her. 

Bruises is a non-verbal Physical Theatre show that combines our contemporary adaptions of the classic dance styles, Apache (a dramatic form of tango), Waltz and Rumba. These are conjoined with elements of Stage Combat based on the topic of male survivors of domestic violence, with the intention to bring their ‘voices’ to Wellington audiences.

Pastel powdered paints fill the room in a flurry as the characters manipulate space and light to represent different injuries – both mental and physical. We will reference true accounts from men who have been abused by their partners.

However, this show will not be a brutal viewing for our audiences. We will portray all sides of this relationship, the love they shared in the beginning and the hope the husband feels towards his wife. Scenes of a first date, gifts of flowers and all those wonderful moments that make two people fall for each other, showing a relationship from beginning to end and everything in between.

Tapere Nui, Te Auaha, 65 Dixon St, Te Aro, Wellington
9th-11th March 2021
Book through Fringe at

Devon Johnston: Deviser, Director
Georgia Kellett: Producer, Choreographer
Anna Secker: Dramaturg 

Georgia Kellett: Role of Wife
Felix Crossley-Pritchard: Role of Husband

Devon Johnston: Stage manager, Marketing, Sound Designer
Anna Secker: Lighting and Sound Operator
Georgia Kellett: Lighting Designer

Theatre , Physical , Dance-theatre ,

45 mins

A toxic, abusive, horrific relationship has never looked this good

Review by Ines Maria Almeida 11th Mar 2021

Knot Theatre’s brutal Bruises is a non-verbal Physical Theatre show that incorporates elements of Apache dance and Stage Combat in order to highlight male victims of domestic violence, and to help make their voices heard.

If you didn’t know this was a problem in your community, keep in mind that between 2009 to 2012, 24% of intimate partner violence-related deaths were perpetrated by women. Here’s another stat for you: New Zealand has one of the highest rates of sexual and domestic violence in the developed world.

Devisor-director Devon Johnson, dramaturg and lighting and sound operator Anna Secker, and set designer Dannii Kellett take a dark theme and turn it into something beautiful, riveting and energised, albeit somewhat painful to watch.

The show starts with a newly married couple (Georgia Kellett and Felix Crossley-Pritchard) moving in together and setting up their home. Crossley-Pritchard, as husband, ‘brings home the bacon’ while Kellett, as wife, is doing her best to hide her shopping addiction. To say she is unwell is an understatement: she is jealous, possessive, paranoid and controlling. But she is also mesmerising and gorgeous, so you forgive her transgressions, that is until she is beating the crap out of her doting husband.

And like many victims of domestic abuse, he forgives her too. Pastel powdered paints fill the room in a flurry of red and blue as the characters move gracefully across the stage manipulating space and light to represent different injuries. A toxic, abusive, horrific relationship has never looked this good I’m sure.

Both Kellett (also the choreographer) and Crossley-Pritchard are incredible in their roles – as dancers and actors who show a depth and breadth of talent surprising for Fringe. Kellett is frankly terrifying and Crossley-Pritchard’s breakdown in the shower brings tears to my eyes.

The set itself is a major part of the beauty of the show – lightbox furniture that lights up the room, perfectly crafted with the intention to trick you into thinking this could be domestic bliss, that is until it becomes excruciatingly clear that it is anything but.

Cheltenham (my +1) and I leave, muted, discussing the men we know who have found themselves in a situation like this before. Both Cheltenham’s mate and Crossley-Pritchard manage to get out alive but are forever scarred. 


ricky Johnston March 12th, 2021

OMG.....thats all i can say "so much was said without a word being spoken - beautiful and thought-provking at the same time

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