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Pasifika plays in-progress part of festival

AUCKLAND CITY COUNCIL MEDIA RELEASE


22 February 2006


Pasifika plays in-progress part of Celebrate Pasifika

Public are invited to hear from Pacific writers about their works and also experience two new Pacific plays in progress for the stage at Pasifika Playwrights, part of the inaugural Celebrate Pasifika.

A free public forum called "Pacific Voices" will be held on Thursday 9 March at The Edge's Limelight Room from 9.30am until 12.30pm with makers of New Zealand Pacific plays and presentations of new New Zealand Pacific works. It will also feature lively panel discussions with Oscar Kightley, Vela Manusaute and Justine Semei-Barton.

The forum will be followed in the afternoon by the highly anticipated premiere of two new Pacific Island plays from 2pm until 5pm at The Edge's Herald Theatre. They will also be performed again at TAPAC opposite the Pasifika Festival, Western Springs on Saturday 11 March from 2pm until 5pm.

The two featured plays, Brother's Keeper and On a Different Shelf, were selected through a nationwide application process.

Brother's Keeper is by Jeanie J Taulima, a recent writing graduate from UNITEC. The story is about how a family always relies upon certain member to always 'help out' or 'do the right thing', and just how much those two phrases can weigh a person down.

On a Different Shelf, described as Sex and the City meets Polynesian Divas, is by Sandra Kailahi, a reporter and presenter for TVNZ's Tagata Pasifika. It tells the story of Ana Tupou who is successful, independent and vivacious, but also single, 36 and Tongan.

Pasifika Playwrights is a collaboration between Auckland City and Playmarket, New Zealand's leading script development organisation, who have come together to provide a significant national development programme for Pacific playwrights.

Auckland City Community Arts Coordinator, Dianna Fuemana, says the programme is a great opportunity to develop ideas, supported by a creative team.

"Auckland is celebrating Pasifika and this is a forum that encourages and promotes New Zealand Pasifika stories for the stage," says Ms Fuemana.

Pasifika Playwrights is just one of 42 activities that make up Celebrate Pasifika, a cross-regional initiative between Auckland City, Manukau City and Waitakere City, which seeks to build and promote the celebration of Auckland's pacific cultures.

For the full programme of Celebrate Pasifika activities, please visit www.aucklandcity.govt.nz/celebratepasifika

ENDS

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