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September 7, 2009 | by  | in Arts Theatre |
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Aftermaths – Three Plays

Aftermaths1Aftermaths
Three Short Plays
7pm, 9 – 12 September 2009
Studio 77, 77 Fairlie Tce, Kelburn
$15/$8, book at theatre@vuw.ac.nz or 463 5359
Facebook event here.

Everyone is looking for happiness, and no one finds it. There are no happy endings in Aftermaths, the second season of plays to emerge from this year’s THEA 304 Directing paper. It consists of three works; all bound together by an aim to shock and provoke the audience.

“We are questioning your apathy. We are all looking at people being comfortable and wanting to present them with aspects of life and humanity which don’t quite jive with that,” says Ailsa Krefft, one of the directors. But, let it not be said that this will be a dour evening. A pitch black sense of humour will drift in and out of all three plays.

Krefft kicks off the evening with Helter Skelter. It is the New Zealand premiere of the latest play by notorious playwright and filmmaker Neil LaBute (Set best by Bash, ah). A couple meets in a restaurant after a day of shopping, but recently discovered infidelities start an unstoppable slide towards a shocking resolution. A sharp, delicate and disturbing play, Krefft says that it’s about “The fragility of human kind. The fact that shocking events really do take place. The idea that someone you know has the potential within them to snap and do unthinkable things.”

In the middle sits theatrical legend Caryl Churchill’s latest play Seven Jewish Children, directed by Nicole Harvey. Written as a direct reaction to the Israeli bombing of Gaza earlier this year, Seven Jewish Children, a poetic, non-Aftermaths2naturalist piece, has a become a lightening rod for controversy, a radio version of it being banned recently from the BBC airwaves. “It’s quite tricky to describe,” says Harvey. “It follows Jewish parents over the course of recent history and it sees them questioning what they should tell their child about war and the world around them, about whether should they tell them the truth or keep them in a little box of coddling security.”

Ending the evening is New Zealand playwright Angie Farrow’s After Kafka, directed by Samantha Woodward. Set within a cocoon, it asks questions of meaning both within people’s lives and within themselves. It is a play of inspiration and creative block. Woodward chose to put it on “because of all the visual and theatrical opportunities it afforded me. When I look at this play, I see cool things.”

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About the Author ()

Uther was one of the two arts editors in 2009. He was the horoscopier and theatre writer in 2010. Alongside Elle Hunt, Uther was coeditor in 2011.

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