Quilt to premiere this week
Local producers are not shy about taking a punt on putting on New Zealand premieres.
The latest pioneering production is the 1987 musical Quilt – A Musical Celebration.
First time director Andrea Maxwell says the musical theatre piece tells the stories behind the panels that make up the AIDS Memorial Quilt created in the US as HIV infections peaked.
‘‘It follows a couple of characters and tells several stories about people affected by the AIDs outbreak and are represented by the quilt panels. Some of the stories are hilarious. Others are heartbreaking.’’
Andrea says it’s an exploration of human emotions woven around the quilt’s nar- rative panels..
‘‘The stories could be about anyone who is diagnosed with a terminal illness. It may be about AIDs, but the feelings are the same no matter what has been diagnosed – cancer, heart disease, dementia.’’
The 80s period piece is a conversation starter about discussing and dealing with situations that are ‘‘difficult’’.
‘‘It shows all the emotions that people experience along that journey, and also the people left behind and who are dealing with the consequences.’’
There’s anger, sadness, angst, but also moments of lightness and hilarity.
The show has attracted Globe Theatre Award nominee for her role in Evita, Jo Sayle, Wellington Theatre Award and Globe Theatre Award winner Ian Harman, Wendy Newth, and musician Roger Buchanan as musical director playing the theatre’s grand piano.
‘‘I’m loving it,’’ Andrea says. ‘‘I’ve taken the best bits of all the directors I’ve worked with and distilled them into this show. I’m having a blast.’’
Jo Sayle belts out a number from the New Zealand premiere of Quilt: A Musical Celebration which opens in Globe 2 this week.