The­atre buff re­veals life be­hind lights

South Waikato News - - NEWS - By CAITLIN WAL­LACE

A the­atre stage was once a fear for Pa­tri­cia Robin­son but now she thrives on it.

It was 24-years ago when the Toko­roa res­i­dent per­formed her first two lines in front of a crowded au­di­ence

The bub­bly woman who is loud and proud about her the­atri­cal life said she was a shy per­son once upon a time.

‘‘For this in­cred­i­bly shy per­son to get up and per­form it was hard but I felt open and safe,’’ she said.

At 15 the for­mer Auck­lan­der joined a small Pa­pakura the­atre group.

It did not take her long to re­veal her tal­ents.

‘‘On open­ing night I didn’t even think about it.’’

Her voice is as loud as her per­son­al­ity which is also re­flected in her choice of cloth­ing.

And she brought it all with her to the South Waikato seven years ago.

Robin­son said she could not stay away from the­atre and joined her first South Waikato pro­duc­tion, Zom­bied.

Though she re­sides in Toko­roa the choice of Pu­taruru came down to her brother’s de­mand.

‘‘ He said to me the­atre’,’’ she said.

‘ Tok Lit­tle is my

It would not have stopped her but she de­cided Pu­taruru the­atre was the place to be.

Since her ar­rival Robin­son has taken part in more than 20 shows.

But the one that sticks with her is the An­zac show per­formed this year.

It was the first time she was elected to sing a solo.

Of all songs, she got landed with never cried so much in my life by 1940’s singer Gra­cie Fields.

‘‘I watched it and I sat there and said ‘oh my god I couldn’t do it jus­tice how Gra­cie did’,’’ she said.

But that is all a part of the the­atre life, ac­cord­ing to Robin­son.

One of the most unique parts of a the­atre group is the re­la­tion­ships you form, she said.

Through all the hours of prepa­ra­tion and prac­tice, there is always fun to be had.

‘‘The last night is the cra­zi­est be­cause that’s when all the pranks come out,’’ she said.

‘‘[But] you never did some­thing so elab­o­rate that the au­di­ence would know.’’

De­spite her ex­pe­ri­ence Robin­son said you never know what is be­hind the cur­tain.

Bring on an­other 24 years, she said.

I

Pho­tos:CAITLIN WAL­LACE

In char­ac­ter: Toko­roa’s Pa­tri­cia Robin­son can get into char­ac­ter at the drop of a hat.

Mem­ory lane: Pa­tri­cia Robin­son looks through the many pro­grammes from her time in the the­atre.

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