An in­ti­mate au­di­ence

with Melissa Fer­gus­son

Auckland City Harbour News - - NEWS - By CIARA PRATT

Con­fronting, in­tel­lec­tual and edgy – that is how play­wright and di­rec­tor Melissa Fer­gus­son de­scribes her two lat­est the­atre cre­ations.

Mother­lock and pURe are two the­atre pieces writ­ten and di­rected by Miss Fer­gus­son of the the­atre com­pany char­la­tan clinic.

Mother­lock, an au­to­bi­o­graph­i­cal con­tem­po­rary piece, fol­lows the jour­ney of a woman’s four preg­nan­cies to dif­fer­ent British men.

The crit­i­cally-ac­claimed play has al­ready shown at the Auck­land, Welling­ton and Mel­bourne Fringe Fes­ti­vals but has been re-cast with ac­tress Tara O’Brien and re­made for its lat­est show­ing.

Miss Fer­gus­son says the idea for the piece came about when a friend spoke to her about her chil­dren.

‘‘It’s not about be­ing a mother; It’s about the jour­ney of preg­nancy and the choices women make to be­come moth­ers.’’

The sec­ond the­atre per­for­mance, pURe, ex­plores the de­struc­tive ef­fect of metham­phetamine on life and re­la­tion­ships.

It stars award-win­ning screen and stage ac­tors, Alis­tair Brown­ing and Re­becca Parr.

‘‘ pURe came about be­cause I have two teenage daugh­ters and I’d been hear­ing so much about the drug in the me­dia,’’ Miss Fer­gus­son says. ‘‘I also have a health back­ground and I’ve worked in al­co­hol and detox in the UK so I’ve had quite a strong af­fil­i­a­tion with see­ing peo­ple de­clin­ing and los­ing hope as a re­sult of the drug.’’

She de­scribes both pieces as edgy and hopes they will be in­ter­ac­tive and in­tel­lec­tual.

‘‘I want to ad­dress the stigma also around the ideas such as sin­gle moth­ers and drug use – all sorts of is­sues are con­fronted in these pieces.’’

Both of the shows in­clude mul­ti­me­dia as­pects with pre-recorded footage and live feeds.

Both plays will be shown from Septem­ber 18 to 22 at The Wil­liamson Pri­vate Meet­ing Room, 1 Wil­liamson Ave (part of the old Pon­sonby Fire Sta­tion) in Grey Lynn.

Photo: JA­SON OXENHAM

Thought­pro­vok­ing: Play­wright Melissa Fer­gus­son will be di­rect­ing two of her con­fronting the­atre pieces in Grey Lynn next week.

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