The People's Oracle - Free Life Lessons from your Neighbour

Cuba Mall just north of Dixon St, Wellington

17/02/2024 - 17/02/2024

NZ Fringe Festival 2024

Production Details

Katja Starke (deviser, build, performer)

We The Collateral

The prophetic People’s Oracle is coming to town! Give & get free life lessons from your neighbour through this interactive installation made out of olden day junk spewing the community’s collective wisdoms.

The Oracle is calling residents from all corners of Wellington and beyond to share their life lessons. What’s your greatest insight? Perhaps: Always water your house plants? Never give up trying? Eat chocolate at least once a day? Be bold?

The People’s Oracle’s assistant will be collecting life wisdoms on Thursday 15 February on Cuba Street (roaming between Dixon and Vivian) from 12-2pm. Come see her and share you life lessons so they can be fed into the Oracle 5-9 pm on Saturday 17 February, corner of Dixon & Cuba.

Once all Life Lessons have been collected, The People’s Oracle will be up and running. Do you have any pressing life questions that need answering urgently? Ask the The People’s Oracle your curly life questions and listen to it dishing out insightful wisdom as shared by your community.

This interactive installation is created by Katja Starke from WE THE COLLATERAL. In her participatory mahi, Katja combines the whimsical with engaging audiences around what is meaningful to them.

DATE-TIME: Saturday 17 February 5-9pm



Katja Starke + the participating community engaging with The People's Oracle sharing their life lessons and asking their life questions on the night.

Comedy , Multi-discipline , Outdoor , Performance Art , Verbatim , Theatre ,

5-9pm (4 hours) - drop by for 20 mins or so.

Try your luck. A funny juxtaposition may occur.

Review by John Smythe 17th Feb 2024

Tonight (Saturday) only until 9pm, on Cuba Mall on the Northern side of Dixon Street, you may happen across an old red velvet armchair facing a wall of retro radios and TV sets. And even older HMV-style speaker perches on a top corner.

This is The People’s Oracle which offers Free Life Lessons from your Neighbour. Its deviser, Katja Starke, has gathered Life Lessons from passing Wellingtonians during the day and is there to facilitate your interaction with the Oracle.

You sit in the chair, taking care to pick up the microphone first, whereupon the Oracle introduces itself and bids you to ask your question. You do so, and an answer is offered that may or may not make sense. Think Lucky Dips, Fortune Cookies, pop-culture Horoscopes …

Many passers-by pause to observe and a few give it a go. My question about how long the three-headed taniwha known as the current government will last gets, “Don’t underestimate others, turn around and I’ll kick you in the bum” or words to that effect. “The Oracle has spoken!”

Others want to know how long it will be before they get a boyfriend, will they be successful in New Zealand, boxers or undies …?

Try your luck. A funny juxtaposition may occur.


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