‘Maori world’ on stage
After a season in the realm of Shakespeare, Roimata Fox is ready to step back into her home world.
The Auckland actor is preparing to take the stage in Te Puhi, a coming of age drama that draws inspiration from the first beauty queens of New Zealand.
Fox has just finished a season of Much Ado About Nothing at the PopUp Globe, her first encounter with Shakespeare.
Now she is focused on Te Puhi, a play by Cian Elyse Waiti, that follows Te Puhi Johnson as the first Maori to have been crowned Miss New Zealand.
Five years later Puhi is living in London and receives a call home where she must deal with the fallout of her absence.
‘‘I’m really loving stepping out of Shakespeare and coming into te ao Maori again,’’ Fox said.
Te ao Maori literally means ‘‘the Maori world’’.
Tapunakohe Tocker plays Te Puhi and said the story explored her characters’ disconnect from the Maori world.
‘‘That’s true in terms of our history, in terms of Maori, that did happen a lot of the time,’’ Tocker said.
‘‘If they went outside the pa, they changed. So it talks about the connection and the disconnect, and then the coming back together.’’
Te Puhi performs at the Herald Theatre from June 12 to 17.