20 February 2012

Peninsula: A real story to which everyone can identify

Choreographer Luke Hanna tells drama on the waterfront all about his experience working on Peninsula, Circa’s contribution to the 2012 New Zealand International Arts Festival.

DOTW: What is the story of Peninsula?

LH: The story revolves around a boy, Michael, and his life in rural Canterbury. The arrival of a new teacher in town sends ripples through the community. What excites me about this story is the complexity of the relationships and how a new arrival can inspire such a change.

DOTW: Describe your role as a choreographer.

LH: I have only recently started working with actors in theatre. As a choreographer, I am not interested in a ‘dance routine’. I look at the big picture and work with the actors’ natural movement. For example, when there are two actors working in a scene, they are subconsciously moving in similar ways. My job is to bring this to their attention and then further explore the movement to play with the theatricality of the scene.
One challenge presented with this play is the double casting of actors. I have been working with the actors on the physical transformation from one character to the next. This helps clarify the shifts in character, space and situation throughout the play.

In the rehearsal room: choreographer Luke Hanna (far right) working with the cast of Peninsula.
DOTW: What has it been like working with the cast and crew?

LH: It has been a pleasure to work with such a great cast and crew. I have felt welcomed and my input respected, which is really important, as I have not been there full time. I enjoy working with actors, and observing how they work differently to dancers. The rehearsal space is normally a hot, sweaty, fun and hard working environment. I owe a big thank you to Jane Waddell for asking me to be part of this project.

DOTW: What is your experience?

LH: I graduated from the New Zealand School of Dance in 2006. Since I graduated I have worked with various companies in Australasia, including Black Grace, Dance North, and most recently Australian Dance Theatre. During my time with these companies I have toured extensively through Europe, USA and the Pacific. My return to Wellington has allowed me to explore my role as a choreographer. I have been fortunate to work with the Playground Collective on their STAB season of Tinderbox, and collaborating with The Black Seeds for their new music video.

DOTW: Why should audiences see the Peninsula?

LH: I am excited for audiences to see Peninsula as it is a classic New Zealand play about real families, real people, real places, and above all a real story to which everyone can indentify. The play carries the energy of a children’s playground with moments of true beauty.   

Peninsula opens Saturday, 25 February as part of the New Zealand International Arts Festival. The season continues after the Festival until 31 March.

For performances: 25 February - 18 March TICKETEK PH: 0800 842 538
PLEASE NOTE: Tickets can be purchased from Circa on the day of performance subject to availability

For performances: 20 - 31 March CIRCA PH: (04) 801 7992 

No comments:

Post a Comment