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Cast Announced for NZ's First Pacific Musical - The Factory


The Factory
6 – 11 March, 2013
Q Theatre, Auckland

Auckland Arts Festival is delighted to announce the cast for the brilliant home-grown production and New Zealand’s first Pacific musical, The Factory.

With some of the New Zealand’s very best established and emerging musical theatre talent, including renowned New Zealand actor Ross Girven (Sweeney Todd, We Will Rock You, Ngati), Aleni Tufuga (Wild Bunch, Taro King, The Factory), acclaimed performer and fashion designer Lindah Lepou, Taofia Pelesasa (Frigate Bird Sings), Taupunakohe Tocker (I AM TV, Pukana), Tavai Faasavalu (NZ’s Got Talent) and introducing the newly-discovered singing superstar Milly Grant-Koria, this fresh new version of the vibrant, hilarious and heartfelt musical runs 6 to 11 March at Auckland’s Q Theatre.

The Factory is a tribute to the courage of the Pacific migrants who came to New Zealand during the 70s searching for ways to support the families they had left behind and striving to make new lives for themselves. Arriving in Aukilani with her father, a young Samoan woman with big dreams and hopes for a brighter future is immediately set to work in a textile factory. There she discovers that each time the factory bell rings she feels further away from her home and aspirations.

Created in South Auckland by the formidable Kila Kokonut Krew (KKK), whose work includes Taro King, Once Were Samoan and Strictly Brown among others, this new version of The Factory, produced by Auckland Arts Festival, comes to the Festival after a highly acclaimed premiere season at Mangere Arts Centre in 2011. The show is directed by the KKK’s Anapela Polataivao (Night Shift, Taro King, Strictly Brown) and Vela Manusaute (Taro King, Strictly Brown, Island Mafia, Playaz Night), with music by Poulima Salima (Tatau, Nafanua, O Le Pe’a) and musical direction by Tama Waipara (Brel, Raising the Titanics, Rent).

According to Auckland Arts Festival Artistic Director, Carla van Zon, “The Factory is a brilliant musical with a deeply potent story that reflects a reality for many immigrants to Auckland, including my own parents a generation earlier. Created about Auckland and the Pacific community by one of the city’s most significant arts orgnisations Killa Kokonut Krew, this new version, produced by Auckland Arts Festival, has been further developed giving the company the opportunity to revisit, enhance and refine the work. Set in the 70s, the era of dawn raids, with a superb new cast and some new songs, the team is hugely enjoying bringing this gem of NZ Pacific musical theatre to the stage again, to star at the heart of the Festival.”

The soundtrack ranges from 70s disco to soul and Pacific Roots, and the performers are accompanied by a live band. The full cast of 14 comprises Vai Autagavaia, Tavai Faasavalu, Paul Fagamalo, Sela Faletolu, Ross Girven, Milly Grant-Koria, Edward Laurenson, Lindah Lepou, Joanna Mika, Taofia Pelesasa, Sally Sakalia, Taupunakohe Tocker, Aleni Tufuga and Troy Tuua.

A solid blend of drama, comedy, music and dance that ultimately explodes with literal electricity. You'll know what I mean when you go. – Theatreview

The Factory demonstrates that musical theatre is the ideal form for expressing the heightened emotions and indomitable optimism of the immigrant story. – NZ Herald

Musical director Poulima Salima pulls off a remarkable fusion with a live band that has delicate string arrangements combining with the driving rhythms of Pacific Island drums, a soulful saxophone and some serious guitar based funk. – NZ Herald

An entertaining and confronting full-scale musical, replete with humour and interwoven subplots that combine to make for an all-round satisfying experience – Theatreview


ShowThe Factory
WhereRangatira, Q Theatre, Auckland
WhenWednesday 6 March – Saturday 9 March, 7.30pm
Sunday 10 March, 5pm
Monday 11 March, 6.30pm
Duration1hr 30min no interval
Post-show talkThursday, 7 March
PriceA Reserve $55 / Friend/Conc/Group $49
B Reserve $45 / Friend/Conc/Group $39
BookingsBook at THE EDGE: / 09 357 3355 / 0800 289 842
Group bookings: / 09 357 3354
Book at Q Theatre: / 09 309 9771
Social MediaFacebook:
Twitter: @Aklfestival
Media enquiriesSiobhan Waterhouse, Publicist. P: +64 (0)9 374 0317 | M: +64 (0) 22 126 4149


Directors: Anapela Polataivao and Vela Manusaute
Composer: Poulima Salima
Musical Director: Tama Waipara
Line Producer: Jonathan Alver
Set Design: Sean Coyle
Cast: Vai Autagavaia, Tavai Faasavalu, Paul Fagamalo, Sela Faletolu, Ross Girven, Milly Grant-Koria, Edward Laurenson, Lindah Lepou, Joanna Mika, Taofia Pelesasa, Sally Sakalia, Taupunakohe Tocker, Aleni Tufuga, Troy Tuua

Produced and presented by Auckland Arts Festival
With support from Creative New Zealand and ASB Community Trust

About Auckland Arts Festival: The Auckland Arts Festival is Auckland's premier festival of New Zealand and international arts. The globally-recognised event celebrates people and culture, and showcases the unrivalled location and landscape, cultural diversity and vibrant energy of New Zealand’s largest and most multicultural city.

With over 50 events that have been carefully selected or specially created, comprising performances, exhibitions, installations, seminars, workshops and family activities, the Auckland Arts Festival 2013 programme offers anyone keen to ignite their creative spirit a unique chance to experience the arts in unexpected ways.

Auckland Arts Festival is governed by the Auckland Festival Trust and the Board chaired by Victoria Carter. The Trust receives core funding from Auckland Council through the Auckland Regional Amenities Funding Act, and from Creative New Zealand through the Toi Tōtara Haemata programme.

The Festival’s executive team is Artistic Director Carla van Zon and Chief Executive David Inns. Significant support for the Auckland Arts Festival 2013 is received from the ASB Community Trust, NZ Major Events, The Lion Foundation and Pub Charity; Gold Sponsors Westpac and Colenso BBDO; Silver Sponsors Auckland Airport and Classic Hits; and other sponsors, patrons and donors.


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