May 6, 2019

Waiting for Godot

You're confronted with a slab of concrete, two concrete walls either side, a lone bare tree reaching for the sky. It could be the side of a highway anywhere. It's a desolate landscape. A huge achievement within a theatre.

The actors are all excellent including one who threw himself on the stage. They created believable characters despite the odd subject matter...and odd characters to be fair.

Waiting for Gadot is a literary classic but it's also pointless and boring. I was warned beforehand that nothing happens but I assumed it would be like Friends or Sienfield, where it would still be entertaining and manage to come to some sort of conclusion. Theatre can be thought provoking but also enjoyable, this wasn't.

Negative reviews aren't popular but we pride ourselves on honesty. The production itself was great but the material wasn't (sorry English teachers of the world).

Performances: 4 May ‑ 1 June (times vary)
Tickets: $52

May 2, 2019

Conversations with Dead Relatives

Do you know your whakapapa? You may think you do, but you do you really?

Imagine being mocked by an ancestor for losing connection with your roots, for mixing up your memories. Was that story about this uncle or that one?

I'd expected crying, sad stories about how much you miss your grandmother. This was so much more, it was story telling at it's best. Finding how my story intertwines with yours - whether it's by location or, if we go far enough back, our shared ancestors.

Interesting points were made about the intersection of Māori and Pakeha culture. How it's our joint history, and there were forces keeping couples apart on both sides. A point was made that a picture of a Māori ancestor was missing her moko but it also could have been the technology. Let's be honest, we'd be more comfortable if the technology was at fault.

It's not clear if the stories that make up this play are factual or, if they are, if these people are related. Regardless they tell the history of the people of New Zealand, back to their homelands.

It was a little hard to focus on the performance as the person next to me was manspreading so I was forced to nestle close to my companion. Perhaps he was made too comfortable by the warm welcome we recieved to the theatre; they even had a tin of homemade baking, a lovely touch.

Performances: 1-11 May (times vary)
Tickets: $35