First bite at theatre
Bites – sounds like an outbreak of vampires, a mozzie or shark attack – or like someone has fallen off the diet wagon.
Actually, it is about sustenance. Bites features eight tasty dramatic morsels – an eight-course degustation menu prepared by eight performance ‘chefs’.
For ‘recipes’ they are using the top eight playscripts culled from 70 entries in the recent National Playwright Association of New Zealand (PANZ) Short Play Writing Competition.
The 80-minute performance by the city’s Skin Theatre company, takes place in the Dark Room from this Thursday 17 until Saturday 26.
A founding member of Skin Theatre, Globe Theatre Award winning actor Maree Gibson says PANZ approached playwright Angie Farrow at Massey University to oversee the project, giving Palmerston North the opportunity to host the first performances of plays from this new and exciting competition.
‘‘PANZ hunted down Angie, being the short play guru, and she thought of us to put the plays on. We were pretty excited. They are a challenge for us, they haven’t been presented on stage before.’’
With funding from Palmerston North City Council, Creative Communities, and Massey University, the eclectic mix of plays Sentimental Journey, The Dentist Bill, Border Control, Surfing in Munich, Hiding Behind the Teacups, Forget-Me-Not, The Interview and The Reunion has attracted a top flight cast. Toby Lockhart is also directing alongside Massey’s Tracey- Lynne Cody, Skin co-founder Kelly Harris, Philip Anstis, and the new head of UCOL drama, Lilicherie McGregor.
Joining Maree and Toby onstage is Globe Award winner Hannah Pratt – Goneril in Summer Shakespeare’s King Lear; Mark Kilsby from Centrepoint’s production of Frankenstein and Skin’s The Laramie Project last year; Trent Pedley who had a lead role in 2014’s Summer Shakespeare production of As You Like It, Phil White who appeared in Frankenstein, Skin’s 2014 production of Dark Deeds, and Feilding Little Theatre’s The Learners Stand; Jessica McLean from Massey University Drama’s 12 In A Box and Properjob Production’s Othello, and Therese McCrea from Frankenstein and Skin’s Macbeth.
Music for Bites is by local songwriter and musician, Annie Webster.
Tickets at $20 and $12 are available from Centrepoint Theatre, 354 5740 centrepoint.co.nz and at the door.
Phil White and Hannah Pratt perform in one of the eight short plays that make up Bites in The Dark Room this week.