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Shadows of Care – Two Plays

MEDIA RELEASE 20 January 2006
for immediate release

Jawbone Co-operative presents in Fringe 2006

Shadows of Care – Two Plays

The Glockenspiel Dockyards by Lisa Norriss
Just Add Water by Barry Lakeman


OLD BUGGERS IN THE FRINGE

The old buggers (and a couple of young ones) blaze in to the Fringe with these two award-winning plays, performing in the Fringe at BATS Theatre for 5 nights from 16 February.

Barry (one of the old buggers) wrote one of the plays and stars in the other. His play, Just Add Water, was the Olga E Harding best new NZ play 2004 and is being performed as a finalist in February in Sydney’s Short and Sweet 2006. This production won the NZ Theatre Federation national award 2005 for best design/technicals. The Glockenspiel Dockyards won the 2003 South Island final of Playmarket’s NZ Young Playwrights’ Competition.

In Glockenspiel an elderly couple tease, game play, make and unmake a jigsaw of chairs, and deal with the absurd puzzle of existence. In Water, rhythms, questions, murder and two not-so-young dancing detectives face the disintegration of a relationship between a young man and woman. The words, the light and the water play on.

When asked why the title for her play, Lisa Norriss said it seemed at once evocative and completely absurd, and that just seemed right. “I’m sure Camus would approve,” she added obscurely. Barry was equally elusive about his play. “It seems to work. Anyway if I explain I’ll give away the twist. It’s not all style and language and significant minimalism. There’s a good old-fashioned mystery twist.”

The performers are Barry Lakeman (Endgame, Demeter’s Dark Ride, The Play About the Baby, Blue Heart) and Marjorie McKee (The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant, The Play About the Baby, Lettice and Lovage) in The Glockenspiel Dockyards, and Andrew Bartle, Ross Conland, Eleanor Metcalfe and Jean Slobbé in Just Add Water.

Two award-winning short NZ plays, two very different faces of love and obsession. The one with the chairs and the one with the dancing detectives and the bath of light.

ENDS

SOME BACKGROUND MATERIAL

the plays : Glockenspiel was first performed at the University of Canterbury in 2003, where it won the university award for best original script, and went on to win the South Island region of Playmarket’s NZ Young Playwrights’ Competition. Under the title Suspect, Just Add Water won the 2004 Olga E Harding award for best new NZ script. In 2005 it won the NZ Theatre Federation national design/technical award, and as a radio play (Just Water) it was placed second in the 2005 national MPD Radio Drama Competition run by FreshFM. It is currently a finalist in Sydney’s Short and Sweet 2006 (one of 150 selected from approx 1200 entries, and the only NZ play).

the people :

Lisa Norriss (writer Glockenspiel) is originally from Nelson. In 2001 she completed the Hagley Theatre Company Diploma of Performing Arts, and directs, acts, and produces. She is currently devoted to adapting, writing and performing new works in Christchurch. Lisa holds a BA in Philosophy and a BSC in Ecology from the University of Canterbury.

Barry Lakeman (writer Water, actor Glockenspiel) is a writer, director and actor. His first full length play had its first reading at Playmarket’s The Session in 2004. Since then he has written several film scripts, including one full length, and a further full length play. He was one of six playwrights who participated in the 2005 24 hour Theatre Play Gym at Toi Whakaari. His work in theatre has included producing/promotion/organisation, most notably the series of ‘N Short which has over the last four years celebrated and performed locally written new short plays. As well as considerable acclaim in several recent VUW/Toi Whakaari productions, he has a 2005 Best Actor award for the play which is being presented in this Fringe season.

Marjorie McKee (director Water, actor Glockenspiel)‘s involvement in theatre has ranged from acting in university revues and foreign language plays to opera, ad lib dinner mystery theatre, and VUW/Toi Whakaari productions. She won best actor awards in amateur theatre work in 2002, 2003, and 2005. Her work as a director/designer is recent but has brought a 2005 national award for design in the production of Just Add Water which is presented in this Fringe season.

Ross Conland (actor Water) was founder and foundation president of New Players Theatre Company, the amateur theatre company in the Newlands/Johnsonville area, some thirty years ago. He has enjoyed taking roles in a wide range of theatre styles, from Shakespeare to musicals, from drama to farce, dinner theatre (loves the ad lib repartee with audience) to pantomime, and from opera to movies. Ross was an extra in three of Peter Jackson's films (and was thrilled to work and chat with Michael J Fox) and in several earlier movies and commercials, including appearing with David Jason.

Jean Slobbé (actor Water) was also a founding member of New Players Theatre Company. She acted with several societies in England before leaving in 1958 to participate in much of the best theatre in Wellington at that time and since. She also co-writes and co-directs pantomimes.

Eleanor Metcalfe (actor Water) has several roles on stage under her belt, including work in Radio New Zealand’s Open Story Season, and is aiming to train further.

Andrew Bartle (actor Water) has been a theatre practitioner for most of his 28 years. He acts and directs, and is director of photography for Nitro Films.

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