25 June 2012


Theatresports 2012
By Improvisor Ian Harcourt

The Improvisors latest season of Theatresports is drawing to a close with the Grand Finale in Circa One at 7:00pm on Sunday 1st July.

Over the last nine weeks, teams of improv comedians have been battling every Sunday night to win the “audience favourite” vote. The shows’ new earlier start-time of 7:00pm seems to have been a popular change, making the shows more family-friendly, more student-friendly and generally more anyone-who-has-to-get-up-early-on-Monday-morning-friendly. Each night a large share of the audience have been people who have never experienced the comedy treat that is Theatresports before. And those who have seen the show before know that because everything is made up on the spot, every night will be completely different.

During the season we’ve seen the true romance story of a couple from the audience presented in dance, a love song dedicated to Basmati rice and an inflatable plastic cow doubling as a Star Wars stormtrooper’s helmet!! This is what happens when the show is driven by audience suggestions.
The Grand Finale is always one of the most popular shows in the season, so if you are planning on attending it’s worth booking your seats – and sooner rather than later.

Tickets are available for the Theatresports Grand Finale on Sunday, 1 July - to book, call the Circa Box Office on 801-7992 or go online at www.circa.co.nz.

18 June 2012

Sunset Road

Two videos from Tawata Productions about Sunset Road, opening 20 June in Circa Two:

Wahine Māori talk beauty queens: cast members Tina Cook and Aroha White talk about their journey into their characters and the context of the 70s. Discover facts and insights about 1970s Aotearoa

Many thanks to Pikihuia Haenga, Challen Wilson and Hone Kouka for the filming and editing of this interview.

Meet Writer/Director, Miria George of Sunset Road: Miria George and her journey into writing theatre spectacular, Sunset Road.

Many thanks to Pikihuia, Villi, Challen, Hone and Miria for the creation of this video interview.

Sunset Road runs until 7 July in Circa Two. To book tickets, please call the Circa Box Office on 801-7992 or go online at www.circa.co.nz. 

11 June 2012

All My Sons: The Reviews Are In!

The reviews are in – and we are buzzing!
Here is just a taste of what they have to say …

Jeffrey Thomas and Emma Kinane in All My Sons. Photo by Stephen A'Court.
“Susan Wilson has again brought Wellington an unforgettable Miller classic.
A few years ago her ‘Death of a Salesman’ was a knockout.
‘All My Sons’ is another one.” - Lynn Freeman

 “The second half is an explosion of emotions … the confrontation between idealistic son Chris Keller and his father Joe makes for one of the most electrifying moments I’ve seen in 17 years of reviewing.

“Wilson has brought together a dream team. Jeffrey Thomas, Emma Kinane, Richard Dey - these three actors turn in career best performances, supported strongly by Martyn Wood and Jessica Robinson.

“Paul Jenden’s costumes are a delight.

“Arthur Miller’s story resonates with a 2012 audience in ways he could never have imagined. … It is a masterful and insightful work that is one of the year’s must-sees.” 
- Capital Times

“Having seen so many modern plays, it was refreshing to go to an old classic -
I was on the edge of my seat for the entire second half of the play … You could have heard a pin drop, the audience were so captivated. 
“Jeffrey Thomas dominates the play with his portrayal of Joe Keller. Even though you are suspicious of him, you just cannot help but like him.
The other star was Emma Kinane playing Kate. She gets it pitch perfect – it is a magic performance.

“The stage is also worth mention -  a wonderful replica of the backside of a 1940s house, and the back lawn. The artificial grass actually went all the way to the first row of seats, which made you feel very close to the action.  
The costumes were also spot on, especially the frocks for the ladies.
“All four of us raved about the play. … and the Circa performance of it was first class.”
- David Farrar, Kiwiblog 

Jessica Robinson and Ricky Dey in All My Sons. Photo by Stephen A'Court.
“I’d never seen a production of All My Sons… Susan Wilson’s inspiring direction of this particularly powerful and passionate production means that I shall now seek out more of a similar genre.

“Particular congratulations must go to Kinane, Thomas, Dey and Robinson who held the audience in the palm of their hands as they took us on a roller-coaster ride of emotions.

“Awesome set as well!“
- Kate Spencer, City Life News

"Susan Wilson’s production beautifully captures the sense of time and place.  The realistic set of a house and backyard with symbolic weeping willows down the sides, the mood lighting, the costumes and make-up and the hair styles, all convey perfectly a sense of style of the period.
Arthur Miller is a truly great writer … a compelling piece of drama … well worth seeing."
- Dominion Post

(Left to right) Beck Taylor and Dino Karsanidis in All My Sons. Photo by Stephen A'Court.
Meet Beck and Dino – the two young boys who alternate the role of Bert.

Beck Taylor

Beck is ten years old and goes to Houghton Valley School. He is a very busy boy. He loves karate, swimming, soccer, guitar and circus and participates in these each week.

Beck got a part in a feature film called Love Birds when he was eight. “The part was large and we spent seven weeks flying up and down to Auckland,” said his mother, Tanya. “He stumbled into acting - the mother of a friend from school thought he'd be good. He loves it!”

And from Beck...
"Being in All My Sons is extremely fun and the people are really nice. Acting is awesomely cool  :D"

Dino Karsanidis

Dino is 11 years old and and is currently in his first year at Hutt Intermediate School. He is going to take part in the school production of Aladdin next term and he also enjoys learning the drums.

“Dino had a knack for re-enacting movie parts, so we sent him to Hutt Theatre Drama School, which he has attended for 2 1/2 years,” says his mum, Liza. “This part in All My Sons is his first major role!”

Dino has said this of the play: "I like the play because I like how there are some funny parts and there are some sad parts and there are action parts as well".

All My Sons runs until 7 July in Circa One. There will be an audio described performance for blind and visually impaired audience members on Sunday, 1 July at 4pm, with tour tours commencing at 3:15pm. This performance will also be open to the general public. For more information or to book, please call the Circa Box Office at 801-7992.

05 June 2012

Season of Play Readings 2012

Season of Play Readings 2012

Circa Theatre and Playmarket are pleased to present a fantastic array of engaging and thought-provoking play readings. New works by New Zealand playwrights Ken Duncum, Elspeth Sandys, Joe Musaphia, Phil Braithwaite, Kathryn Burnett and Nick Ward will be presented in rehearsed readings, along with Jerusalem by international award-winning playwright Jez Butterworth (subject to rights). The readings will take place at Circa once a month from June to November. Each reading will be helmed by a well-known local theatre director and performed by a cast of professional actors.

“This collaboration allows the public to experience a showcase of terrific new plays while they are fresh in development and to make better use of the resources of both organisations,” says Playmarket director Murray Lynch.

The schedule for the Circa Theatre and Playmarket Season of Play Readings 2012 is:

9th June                      The Train Set by Joe Musaphia
4th August                   Honest to God by Phil Braithwaite
25th August                Rogues and Vagabonds by Elspeth Sandys
29th September         Jerusalem by Jez Butterworth (subject to rights)
27th October              Janet & John by Ken Duncum      
17th November          Mike & Virginia by Nick Ward and Kathryn Burnett

“We think a season of play readings is a marvelous opportunity on so many levels, for playwrights, the Wellington theatre industry and, of course, our patrons,” said Ray Henwood, Circa Council Co-ordinator. “It is a rewarding and exciting addition to our regular programme and we are pleased to be working together with Playmarket to make it a reality.”

Susan Wilson will direct the first reading: The Train Set by Joe Musaphia, starring Christopher Brougham, Nikki MacDonnell and Gavin Rutherford. It is set in Berlin, Germany, 1939. A Jewish couple, Herschel and Vera Stern, are selling up to start a new life in New Zealand. Among their chattels is a Marklin train set. Herschel is impatient to leave Hitler’s ‘anti-Semitic hellhole.’ Vera still dreams of ‘my Germany.’ Their young son and daughter are away while they prepare the apartment for the impending sale. An SS officer knocks on their front door…and demands to see and play with the train set … a very powerful and grimly entertaining drama ensues.

The reading will take place at 2pm on Saturday, 9 June in Circa Two. Tickets are just $5, and can be purchased at the Circa Box Office by calling 801-7992 or online at www.circa.co.nz.

For the detailed information about all of the plays in the 2012 Circa Theatre/Playmarket Season of Play Readings, please visit http://www.circa.co.nz/site/Shows/Circa-Theatre-Playmarket-Play-Readings-2012.

Circa Theatre – 1 Taranaki St, Wellington Waterfront.
Bookings: phone 04 801 7992, email circa@circa.co.nz or visit www.circa.co.nz