Save the date 2021 Festival 21-31 October

Theatre-goers have plenty to enjoy that combines both comedy and drama - the playful and the powerful. So grab a fellow thespian, daring friend or family member and see the world from someone else's shoes.

Mon 28 Oct 1pm
Tues 29 Oct 8:30pm

Cellfish takes Shakespeare to a Kiwi prison with unexpected results that are sometimes hilarious, and sometimes heart-breaking. Some of the hardened inmates want to improve their chances of parole, some have time to kill and one just wants to kill. Jason Te Kare and Carrie Green play 8 different characters each, using their bodies, faces and voices to swap between them. More information and tickets available here.

Proudly sponsored by TECT

Mr Red Light
Tues 29 Oct 7pm

Mr Red Light is a new, heart-warming, funny and philosophical play that explores what happens when the titular character takes three strangers hostage in a New Zealand pie shop. From the award winning Nightsong team of writer Carl Bland and director Ben Crowder, we are brought into a relatable present-day world where love, loss, identity and squashed dreams are hashed out, and redemption waits. The brilliance of this play is that deeper issues are interrogated with a personal comedic touch and joyous spot-on humour – signalled by the audience’s roars of laughter from start to finish (excerpt from review by Cynthia Lam). More information and tickets available here.

Proudly sponsored by TECT.

Still Life with Chickens
Wed 30 Oct 7pm
Thurs 31 Oct 7pm

“Who’d have thought,” muses actress Goretti Chadwick before breaking into peals of laughter at her own punch line, “that 25 years after being introduced to Shakespeare at school I’d be on stage performing with a chicken.” Chadwick brings her character 'Mama' to life giving a tour de force performance in this intimate, heartwarming and funny play about friendship, loss, love and life. More information and tickets available here.
Proudly sponsored by Acorn Foundation.

Rants in the Dark
Wed 30 Oct 8pm
Thurs 31 Oct 8pm

When Emily Writes decided to write honestly about being a mum and post it to her brand-new blog, Rants in the Dark, little did she know it would get more than 1 million hits, be the basis for her first book, and spawn a hilarious stage play (she’s watched it numerous times and adores it). Honest, authentic and laugh-out-loud funny, the play revels in the raw truth of parenthood. Settle in with your besties and a glass of pinot gris and enjoy a collective giggle at the highs and lows of parenting. More information and tickets available here.
Proudly sponsored by HJL Law.

Wild Dogs Under my Skirt
Fri 1 Nov 7pm
Sat 2 Nov 7pm

Girl, get your attitude out! This fearless celebration of Samoan women isn’t without its in-your-face moments as it explores power, politics, racism, love, sex and abuse with vivid, compelling and often hilarious characters. In Wild Dogs Under My Skirt Tusiata Avia examines what it means to belong to two cultures, while belonging fully to neither. “It’s Pasifika women unleashed and unmuted,” says producer Victor Rodger, “and collectively tells the story of what it is to be a Samoan woman.” Although the play deals with some tough issues, Victor notes there’s also plenty of comedy. “The laughs may get strangled in your throat at times, but that’s the genius of Tusiata’s writing,” he says. “There’s a lot of anger, beauty, humour and unbridled rage. “I’ve never been to a play that’s made my heart pound like that”. Unmissable. More information and tickets available here.
Proudly sponsored by Wave Creative Communications Agency.

The South Afreakins
Thurs 24 Oct 7:30pm, Katikati
Fri 25 Oct 7:30pm, Te Puke

Te Puke and Katikati are the places to catch one-woman comedy The South Afreakins, which Kiwi writer-actor Robyn Paterson based on the travails of her own parents as they set about not only coping with retirement (and each other) but moving countries into the mix. Based on her parents experience of moving to Aotearoa, the dance-like duolouge between characters Helene and Gordon, creates a universally relatable story of loss, family and the true meaning of 'home'. More information and tickets available here.
Proudly supported by Western Bay of Plenty District Council and Creative New Zealand.

Portraits in Motion
Thurs 24 Oct 7:30pm, Te Puke
Fri 25 Oct 7:30pm, Katikati
Sun 27 Oct 7pm, The University of Waikato Tauranga

Since 2003 Volker Gerling has been walking in Germany – 4000km so far – and photographing the people he meets to create a unique, award-winning artwork which he calls “thumb cinema”. In Portraits in Motion (Katikati, Te Puke and Tauranga) Volker shows a selection of his favourite portraits by holding flipbooks under a video camera with the resulting moving images projected on to a large screen as he shares the heart-warming stories behind each encounter. Gerling confronts us with our capacity for sudden, deep intimacy with our fellow human beings. More information and tickets available here.
Proudly sponsored by The University of Waikato Tauranga and supported by Western Bay of Plenty District Council.