The Edinburgh Festival Fringe will see nine shows performed by a cross-section of some of New Zealand’s brightest talents. There will be three productions from performance alchemists Binge Culture, a group of artists working to renew theatre and performance for the digital age. At Assembly George Square,
Jane Doe is a theatre show reflecting on rape culture in our communities. One performer leads a public reading of an American rape trial transcript, where audience members act as witnesses and lawyers, a feeding in live responses via their phones. Interwoven with frank and funny documentary footage with young people from the US, UK and Aotearoa New Zealand Jane Doe is a revelatory and carefully crafted discussion on consent, feminism and sexual empowerment which also discusses sexual violence in depth.
Power Ballad at Summerhall is the latest work from Julia Croft. Part performance lecture, part karaoke party, Power Ballad deconstructs gendered linguistic histories and rips apart contemporary language to find a new articulation of pleasure, anger and femaleness.
La Vie Dans Une Marionette performed by White Face Crew at the Gilded Balloon is a whimsical story of a Pianist and his Puppet. Drawing from the best elements of physical theatre, clowning, and contemporary and hip-hop dance styles.
Modern Māori Quartet: That’s Us! at Assembly George Square are a multi-talented Māori foursome who love crooning their spin on modern and classic numbers in the style of the Māori ‘Rat Pack’ – the showbands who became the musical phenomenon of the 60s and 70s in New Zealand. Merging the style of Sinatra with Māori strum, bands with names like the Māori Volcanics and the Māori Hi Five, created their own unique genre.
From Trick of the Light Theatre, the makers of the sell-out Edinburgh 2016 hit The Bookbindercomes The Road That Wasn’t There at Assembly Roxy, a dark fable combining puppetry, shadow play, and live music with a score by award-winning composer Tane Upjohn-Beatson.
The winner of the 2014 Skinny Fringe Genius Award, Juan Vesuvius, returns to Assembly George Square with a new show: I Am Your Deejay. The calypso comedy legend, created by New Zealand actor Barnie Duncan, brings his turntables back to Edinburgh to deliver the greatest and strangest DJ set you’ve ever experienced.
New Zealand at Edinburgh International Book Festival
New Zealand writers making waves at home and abroad will present their work and participate in this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival.
Participation in the festival is part of the New Zealand at Edinburgh season 2017 which sees the return of a New Zealand season across the various Edinburgh festivals taking place in August. This follows an ambitious and successful presentation in 2014.
The writers are award-winning Wellington poet Hera Lindsay Bird, critically acclaimed Auckland poet, playwright and fiction writer Courtney Sina Meredith, and best-selling Wellington novelist, graphic artist and blogger Sarah Laing. They will be accompanied by Rachael King, author and programme director of WORD Christchurch, who has worked with the festival to select the writers and curate their events.
New Zealand at the Edinburgh Art Festival : Shannon Te Ao (Ngāti Tūwharetoa)
Commissioned by Edinburgh Art Festival and Te Tuhi Contemporary Art Trust, Aotearoa, New Zealand with support from British Council Scotland, Shannon Te Ao’s With the sun aglow, I have my pensive moods, 2017 is a multimedia installation which explores the physical and emotional depths of love, grief, sickness and the complications of healing. Te Ao’s selection comes after receiving New Zealand's most prestigious art award, the Walters Prize.
Te Ao's artwork for the Festival draws on a number of historic references including a 1840s waiata (Māori song) immortalising the physiological and psychological repercussions of sickness and grief, and an intimate dance scene from a 1970s film by African-American director Charles Burnett, reimagined between two women. By drawing together various threads, Te Ao creates an entangled perspective of the human condition – both real and fictional – to explore humankind's hopes, its failings, and its potential for transformation.
The NZ at Edinburgh 2017 season is supported by Creative New Zealand, the country’s arts development agency, encouraging, promoting and supporting the arts in Aotearoa though funding, capability building, an international programme and advocacy.