Studio One – enter via Refinery ArtSpace, 114 Hardy Street, Nelson

23/03/2023 - 24/03/2023

Nelson Fringe Festival 2023

Production Details

Created and performed by Chai Pyle

“Courageous, raw, profound, heartbreaking, funny and astounding… a play that prompts self-enquiry” – Tauri Tauri

Everyone will relate to the themes of self-worth, fear, purpose and healing as Chai bravely exposes his inner world, and shines a light on what it is to be human.

Murmon, one of Chai’s three inner characters, adds much colour to this one-man show as he tries every tactic to derail the ‘stupendous idea’ of being on stage. What evolves is a twisting adventure, doused with tough lessons, humour, self-reflection, tenderness, and zeal. Chai’s skilful embodiment of the various characters will leave audiences with holograms of a bigger cast.

Dunedin Fringe 2023
New Athenaeum Theatre
Dates Thurs 16, Fri 17 & Sat 18 March
Time 6pm
Tickets $10

Nelson Fringe 2023
Venue Studio One
Dates Thurs 23, Fri 24 March
Time 7.30pm
Tickets $15

The Imaginarium
Dates Sat 25 March
Time 8.30pm
Tickets $15

Created by Chai Pyle

Theatre ,


A talented and exciting new local talent

Review by Melanie Stewart 24th Mar 2023

This thought-provoking piece examines the demons that plague us when we look in the mirror. Real is based on the real life struggles of Chai Pyle as he pursues his goals and dreams.

Chai wants to write a play, but battles with the multiple voices in his head that demand he explore his weaknesses and previous failures.

His very clever and skilful use of physical theatre is demonstrated in his transitions between characters, his fight scene and puppet interpretation, symbolic of the control our thoughts have over our hearts. 

The fight scene is reflective of the commonly used “Don’t beat yourself up”. After exploring the multitude of failed or half-finished projects, Chai’s alter ego Murmon does just that, beats himself up, in a cleverly choreographed one man fight scene.

The performance is accompanied by a soundscape, some, if not all, composed for it. This is used effectively to add tension and nuance. It is particularly powerful in the puppet scene, reflecting the fight to break free from the strings.

There are moments where I struggle with the delineation between characters, where changes in physicality or vocal tone are not strong enough to signal the difference. But these are few and far between and, on the whole, Chai conveys a bevy of inner characters with conviction and skill.

I am grateful for the question and answer opportunity at the end that helps clarify the play’s process. Chai is a talented and exciting new local talent; this performance has been two and a half years in the development. Let’s hope we don’t need to wait this long for the next one.


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