Dive Into The Words Of Te-moana-nui-a-kiwa With Upu At Circa Theatre
Making its Wellington debut as part of the Kia Mau Festival, the highly acclaimed UPU takes over the Circa stage with Oceania’s most electrifying poetry, performed by a star-studded cast from 15-19 June.
WATCH THE TRAILER HERE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o1AGKOu2Niw
Led by powerhouse director Fasitua Amosa, some of Aotearoa’s finest actors including Jarod Rawiri, Miriama McDowell, Maiava Nathaniel Lees, Mia Blake, Ana Corbett, Shadon Meredith and Gaby Solomona breath life into the work from writers of Te-Moana-Nui-a-Kiwa including Ben Brown, Selina Tusitala Marsh, Albert Wendt, Karlo Mila, Hone Tuwhare, Tusiata Avia, Sia Figiel, and Tayi Tibble.
These words as performed by these incredible actors’ give voice to issues from a Pasifika perspective. Traversing climate change, politics, colonisation, gender, sex, and identity, UPU also gifts the experience of hearing the work of some of our finest Tangata o le Moana writers, curated by award-winning poet Grace Taylor.
“A main part of our kaupapa is to inspire people to dive into Pacific literature, to libraries – by bringing the published word to the stage through the oral word… there is so much richness of published poetry from Oceania – but unless you are at uni or in an academic environment you probably will not access it… many audience members over our last two seasons said ‘we just didn't know this poetry existed’.” – Grace Taylor as told to Faith Wilson for Pantograph Punch. Full article here www.pantograph-punch.comUPU
Audiences are also immersed in a bubble of the moana for UPU as the theatre is flooded with light and projection of mamanu and original sound composition from Faiumu Matthew Salapu (Anonymouz).
of ensemble work display how dramatisation of poetry can
words from a page”
– NZ Herald
“The performance proceeds with urgency,
voices separating into individual perspectives as poems
reveal the nuances of cultures across Moana
performance itself aids the very issue that it highlights,
by giving all the beautiful works of Pacific literature that
have gone astray, a platform to be performed and most
plays as part of the Kia Mau Festival:
commissioned by Auckland Arts Festival in conjunction with
For the full programme of events visit www.kiamaufestival.org
Bios of the performers/creatives and hi-res imagery available via Dropbox