Tag Archives: dance


I went to see Toa Fraser’s cinematic version of the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Giselle. I enjoyed it very much. It’s the stage show (shot from some interesting angles) and every so often veers into the rehearsal room or into regular life. I found the ‘interval’ section and the pas de deux in the rehearsal room the most affecting. Lovely work.

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Language of Living

Tonight I’m going to see The Language of Living by the NZ Dance Company. I’m pretty excited.

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Who Are You?


I really wanted to like this show. Really, really wanted to like it. Perhaps it was that I went with the expectation that the full range of youth experience would be represented but by the end I felt they had only perpetuated popular media myths. The yoof love a lot of things; they are influenced by American culture; they drink a lot of strong alcohol from a very young age (12 or younger) which means either a. sex or b. fighting or c. drink driving; they are disrespectful to their peers whether male or female. Extrapolating from some of the text (I interpreted) that they feel let down by some of the adults around them but feel powerless to change their situation and resent expectations that they should know to behave differently. This for me was the most honest statement during the whole thing.

It started so promisingly. An in your face, cleverly timed, back and forth across the stage by the ensemble. Intricate steps demanded spilt second timing and a bundle of energy. Some standout performances showcased both physical and acting skills. I liked the addition of percussionists to the side of the stage. Three quarters of the way through I was bored. I felt as though I was watching an adult???s pick of the issues that kids these days face. There is excellent choreography in there but sometimes I just couldn???t see it. Literally.* The final straw was the last piece danced to a song by The Cure. A great song but one for the generation before the generation before the one dancing.

So, beautiful dancing but it didn???t hit the mark for me.

*BTW designers ??? if you put someone in black, against a black floor and a black background then light them with dim lights then they will disappear and the audience won???t be able to see them. This is particularly frustrating when they are part of a group…unless of course it was a statement on how some kids are left out in the dark even when they seem to be part of a formal group in which case, well done, good design.

Who are you performed by UrbanYOUTHMovement,
Co-presented by Auckland Arts Festival and Black Grace

Tues/Wed 8/9 March 7.30pm Playhouse Theatre
Thurs-Sat 16-19 March 7.30pm Mangere Arts Centre

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Happy as bro, it’s Monday


Today I braved the queue for the chance to get a $20 ticket from the Festival caravan. I was there from 10.55am ish (tickets om sale from 12.30pm.  If you’re planning to do the same – take your jacket. The sun is behind the buildings all morning and it’s freezing.)  I missed out on my first choice but managed to get a ticket to something that I was planning to see on Tuesday – Happy as Larry.

Apparently it’s based on the enneagram of nine personality types. They’re doing an Art Talk tomorrow so I’ll be able to find out more about that aspect of it.  The dancers were very talented and had some excellent choreography to play with.  They were crisp in their movements.  I liked the use of the moving wall to slip between scenes.  It was also used as a chalkboard (including the most ingenious direction to turn off cellphones) a climbing wall, a dance partner, a diving board and an instruction sheet.  Although there were several pieces that showed how humans like to one-up each other the overall feeling I got was one of positivity and happiness.

I think the people I know enjoyed it too – there were a few reenactments going on in the foyer afterwards.

Sniper update: Last seen on his cell phone in a store window.

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