Mu­si­cal more than just song and­dance


A show about the rich ver­sus the poor plays out at the Uxbridge Theatre in How­ick dur­ing the school hol­i­days.

Ruske Per­form­ing Arts (RPA) stages Once On This Is­land ju­nior, a story about Ti Moune, a peas­ant girl who falls in love with a wealthy boy from the other side of the is­land.

Your Eastern Courier has to the show on Fri­day, Oc­to­ber 13, at 11am or 7pm.

The cast is made up of chil­dren aged eight to 18 and it’s the first time they’ll per­form a mu­si­cal with the RPA, says founder and ex­ec­u­tive pro­ducer Karen Ruske.

‘‘When we went pick­ing for the show we tried to de­cide on some­thing that hadn’t been done.

‘‘We looked at this one and thought it’s got great mu­sic, it’s got a re­ally good story and a great moral les­son, which we liked.’’

By choos­ing a some­what un­fa­mil­iar play, she says she’s do­ing her bit to help ed­u­cate her cast and crew.

‘‘It’s the di­vi­sion [of] the poor to the rich and want­ing to cross that bound­ary and be­liev­ing that you can. That is an im­por­tant thing to learn,’’ Ruske says.

Co-pro­ducer Emma Bishop and pres­i­dent of Drama New Zealand agrees.

‘‘We didn’t want to do a show

ticket dou­ble pass to win a

that other peo­ple have done.

‘‘It’s just been re­vived in Broad­way and opens in Novem­ber. To us, it’s re­ally cool we’re do­ing a show that’s so cur­rent that it’s com­ing back on Broad­way.

‘‘That’s re­ally ex­cit­ing.’’

Lead ac­tress Anya John- Francke plays Ti Moune and says the mu­si­cal isn’t just a tra­di­tional fairy­tale.

‘‘There’s also a much more ma­ture sto­ry­line be­hind it. It is some­thing that will res­onate with a lot of peo­ple.’’

Matthew Turner who plays Daniel Beaux­homme, agrees say- ing he wants peo­ple to leave the theatre in won­der.

‘‘There’s mean­ing be­hind it [all] and we want peo­ple to ques­tion that.’’

For tick­ets to the show that plays on Oc­to­ber 12-14 at Uxbridge Theatre, How­ick, email

To the Eastern Courier draw for two tick­ets to see Once On This Is­land at ei­ther 11am or 7pm on Oc­to­ber 13, email with Once On This Is­land in the sub­ject line, and your name, ad­dress and con­tact phone num­ber by 5pm on Sun­day, Oc­to­ber 8.


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