The actors learn about building character and developing an approach to working with a classic text. A key question for them is, ‘How do I approach a text for performance when the world and words are not my own?’
This project is an opportunity for them to apply what they have been learning across the different strands of the Toi Actor training so far and deepen foundational actor craft that will serve them in both live and screen performance.
There is so much graduate activity to celebrate this term: great productions on all over New Zealand. (We hope we don’t accidentally miss anyone out.)
Firstly to Dunedin where the Fortune Theatre Company presents Sondheim’s Into the Woods: Bryony Skillington (2007) as the Witch – “stupendous performance… one of NZ’s most spell-binding actors”; Frith Horan (2013) as Grannie – “delicious”; Josh Cramond (2015) as the Wolf – “but it is as a hilariously goofy Cow that he is really irresistible”; Julie Edwards (1989) is Jack’s mum – “one of the most engaging stage personalities you will ever see” and Peter Hayden (1973) “of the velvet voice”.
And just like that – what seems like only moments since we left Manutuke and Marae Noho at the end of Term One – Term Two is also over.
It has been an extremely busy one for the school. Term Two holds two externally focused productions as well as several other major pieces of collaborative work that makes powerful demands on students and tutors alike.
Our two productions – The Antigone Sound and Black Confetti – closed on Wednesday night after heroic production processes and a great response from audiences, especially large groups from local schools.
Ruku Pō is a leadership initiative that dives (ruku) into the potential of ‘subjective’ engagement, as an effective response to the chaotic, complex and as yet unknown (pō) ‘objective’ challenges of our time.
The Ruku Pō programme, divided into six wānanga, is based at Manutuke Marae and draws on the specific indigenous frames of the tangata whenua, Rongowhakaata, to explore marae approaches of ‘meeting’ including; formal orientation, reading the core of context of place, and aligning action while maintaining the deeply indigenous perspective of ‘wholeness’. The key is enabling difference to be met and revealing the potential of group. Participants are guided to lead and translate these approaches through testing in their own work contexts.
Every year, Toi Whakaari students collaborate with screen industry professionals to produce a suite of new short films: showcasing the talent of the student body and giving those students professional-equivalent experience on high quality productions.