SolOTHELLO is part of the 2016 Kia Mau Festival that is taking Wellington by storm this Matariki. Presented by Te Rēhia Theatre Company alongside the British Council, SolOTHELLO is a one man show performed by Regan Taylor and directed by Craig Geenty. As the name suggests, the show is William Shakespeare’s Othello, performed as a solo. However, Geenty and Taylor transform what could have easily been an ego trip, (tackling one of Shakespeare’s most ambitious plays solo) into something that is beautiful in the simplicity of deft storytelling. With the use of Te Mata Kokako o Rehia (traditional Maori mask) Taylor reclaims the story of Othello into the lands of Aotearoa, in telling the audience that William Shakespeare is a thief. SolOTHELLO is one man’s retelling of the jealousies and manipulation from Othello in a new and innovative way which brings an exhilarating life force to the text.
Ophelia Thinks Harder was written 20 years ago by New Zealand writer Jean Betts. It is a modern, feminist response to Shakespeare’s classic tragedy Hamlet. Lord Lackbeard’s Touring Company present both shows; modern and classic, masculine and feminine in a double bill season that has toured the North Island and has its final stop here in Wellington. Performed at Boat Café on Oriental Parade, the atmosphere is casual and welcoming. Julia Campbell directs a cohesive production of Ophelia Thinks Harder and through the story depicts the extreme edge of the female experience in Hamlet’s world.
Presented by Students of THEA302 and THEA308
Directed by Stella Reid
When I heard that the 300 level students of Victoria University of Wellington were taking on the oft-performed Much Ado About Nothing, I admit I raised an eyebrow. It’s a daunting challenge, making this fan favourite seem fresh and worthwhile for their audience, most of whom have to brave harsh winds and rain to get to Studio 77 up in Kelburn. Thankfully, the bright-eyed and fresh faced company of THEA 302 mostly live up to that challenge.
Were I to take my pick of Shakespeare’s canon to enjoy on an already gloomy April evening, Titus Andronicus would not be my first choice. It’s far more likely to find itself somewhere near the bottom of my list, because with the gruesome subject matter at the heart of Titus, I find it hard to stomach that the play could ever sit anywhere within the realms of enjoyable.
Local Honest Reviews
At Art Murmurs, our aim is to provide honest and constructive art reviews to the Wellington community.