Theatre review: ‘Gorge’ by Virginia Frankovich & Phoebe Mason
Walking into a ‘fairyland’ of gluttony made me reminisce my childhood birthday parties. A space over-flowing with green jelly, decadent cupcakes, salty popcorn, chelsea buns, chocolate cornflake slice, iced-pink biscuits & sugar aplenty – a feast for queens and the audience, of course. I did not see the first season of ‘Gorge’ that showcased at Auckland Fringe Festival in March 2013 – however it was worth the wait. ‘Gorge’ is storytelling at its finest – about gluttony. Virginia Frankovich and Phoebe Mason were majestically outstanding as they played different characters, engaged with the audience, stimulated our imagination and questioned our relationship with sugar. Apparently ‘we are what we eat’. I love sugar – don’t you? Give me some tiramisu any day. I applaud the ‘Gorge’ girls. See you again in 2016.
Review: Junk & Disorderly
‘Junk & Disorderly’ is a second-hand shoppers’ haven: inundated with everything vintage including timeless books, kitsch ornaments, old-school pails, rocking horses, dainty tables, mannequins, crockery, 1970’s sofas and the kitchen sink. Serious. I absolutely adore this oversized jumble-sale – that favours the consumer. I have purchased, borrowed and browsed this awe-inspiring warehouse for days without boredom. Parking is a dream; located in the heart of Northcote – go and find some treasure now or miss out.
Interview With NZPC Founder, Sex Work Activist & Former Sex Worker: Catherine Healy
1. When/Why did you establish NZPC?
We established NZPC in 1987 to support each other and to address the illegality of our work in the face of police arrests and the potential of HIV to affect our work. We were determined to make conditions related to our work safer and had to to build awareness that legislative change was needed for this to happen.
2. Do you directly work with sex workers’ Catherine?
Most of my work involves direct work with sex workers on a daily basis.
3. What is your stance on underage sex work?
NZ shifted its focus to one of protecting sex workers who are under the age of 18, as opposed to one of prosecuting these young people. This used to be the case before the law changed in 2003.
4. Do you know the current statistics of sex workers in NZ?
I’m aware there are thousands of people who are either sex workers, or who have been sex workers, and who live and work quietly in New Zealand. There are many more people who pay sex workers.
5. What services do NZPC offer?
We focus on working safely, and supporting sex workers to access relevant information which can assist them to do this. People who are considering sex work approach NZPC as do those who want to move away from sex work. We support all.
6. How could other people in society support NZPC?
We are aware there are many individuals and organisations who support NZPC by referring those sex workers who may not know about us, to us. This is important support.
7. What other organisations do NZPC work with besides Women’s Refuge?
We work with a tremendous variety of organisations from Family Planning Association to Sexual Health Services to the NZ AIDS Foundation as well as government organisations.
8. Tell me about your involvement in decriminalizing prostitution in NZ? This bill was passed in 2003?
NZPC was instrumental in pushing for the decriminalisation of sex work. I first presented to a select committee as a representative of NZPC calling for this change in 1989. Decriminalisation of sex work has improved the occupational safety and health of sex workers throughout NZ. Street based sex workers were most frequently arrested and convicted of soliciting and it was a demeaning experience.
9. Why do you think ‘sex work’ is still so stigmatized in modern society?
Sex work is stigmatised because non sex workers are not really listening to the diverse voices of sex workers, and are only happy when sex work is depicted as a horrible “empty” experience. Sex workers would say it’s a lot of different kinds of experiences and want to be treated normally, and not as some problem to be fixed.
10. What do you think of the word ‘WHORE’?
WHORE is understood by sex workers to mean, “We Honour Ourselves with Respect and Empowerment.” It is a word which has been reclaimed by sex workers everywhere.
Sleeping Rough In Auckland City
All week I have been anticipating ‘sleeping rough’ for Lifewise #bigsleepout in Central Auckland. Loaded up with my essentials: (loaned) sleeping bag, beanie, merino gloves, IPhone (to tweet), house keys, ATM card, lipstick and WHORE flyers for potential audience. After registering for the event, we all received personalised cardboard mats and a goodie bag: beanie, Idealog, Special K bar and Merge Cafe voucher. The Whore team scouted an ideal location to settle down, then dinner was on the agenda. Over 100 people lined up for meatballs and spaghetti with a slice of buttered bread: hearty meal. Icecream quickly followed, sponsored by Nice Blocks. We heard great speeches by Lifewise, poetry and an interview with Chanelle who told her story about homelessness, sex work, foster care, mental health admissions and her new job. I was invited into the makeshift cardboard house, shared conversation with many new friends/rough sleepers and was photographed/filmed by random people. Yes – I did sign a media release. The night is chilly, however it’s not raining. There are sleeping bags all over the AUT campus filled with human life. At the time of writing the fundraising figure to (fund) frontline services for homelessness 2014 is $153,357.39! Whore team raised $3,165.00 for Lifewise Big Sleep Out 2014. I am humble. I am grateful. I am cold and slightly hungry, however this is a temporary measure. This experience keeps me real and makes me feel lucky to be alive, with people who care.
Interview with Y&T: Fashion Designer Yuka O
1. When/why was Y&T founded?
Y&T started with the intention of raising funds for the tragic earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Fashion is what I love and know – so naturally this is what I could contribute to make this happen. My husband Tristan and I worked on our first range with all the proceeds going to aid. Yuka&Tristan was founded in 2011, April.
2. Where do you get your inspiration?
Anything that gets me interested at any given time, which then becomes my inspiration/concept to develop the range – architecture, paint, books, design, music etc. Also, I deal with very beautiful fabric – I often get inspired by that too.
3. Have you always loved fashion?
Yes. Always. x
4. What is your go to magazine?
I love Japanese fashion Magazines: Ginza, Fudge Internatinal – The Gentle Woman, Numero, Vogue NZ – Home
5. Have you had any Y&T collections in ‘NZ Fashion Week’ or offshore catwalk? Future plans?
I haven’t thought about doing catwalk into NZ fashion week yet – however I’d definitely love to experience this, if the opportunity arose. I have some exciting news to be revealed soon… (but can’t tell yet) so please stay tuned ! via /yukaandtristan – facebook / @Yuka&Tristan – twitter / #yooksasyuka – instagram
6. Who would you (really) like to wear your brand?
7. Any influences?
Yoji Yamamoto, Kenzo
8. Are you living your ‘dream-job’?
Yes, Although It’s a really tough business – I feel super lucky to do what I love. Big thanks to my husband.
9. When it comes to chocolate -Cadbury or Whittakers?
Whittakers – I choose by label 🙂
10. What makes you smile?
My young children who try to tell me stories about their (daily) adventures, mostly about their school endeavours – those cute explanations are the most gorgeous of things.
Michael Hurst Talks Sex
“Creative Mornings” is a monthly forum (and a must) for anyone who wants to collaborate, listen, observe, assimilate, network or grow from the content of the speakers, and the people that attend.
Hosted at Q Theatre in the ‘Lounge’ with complimentary water from “Antipodes” and the coffee was “Supreme” – don’t mind if I do.
Michael Hurst spoke enthusiastically about directing ‘sex’ on stage and film, with the key subject matter being “Chicago” produced by Auckland Theatre Company and of course “Hercules” and “Spartacus”.
“When do we cross the line?” Michael spoke about what you can and can’t do on set and stage, for example an actor can suck a nipple however there can be no contact with teeth. Fair enough? Why is that? Too erotic, health and safety issue, or maybe it’s a legal matter. Interesting one.
He spoke about the difficulties with contractual obligations with actors and full nudity being a stumbling block. Also, directing scenes in “Spartacus” with male actors and using prosthetics when necessary.
Never mind the relationship issues it can cause the actor when they go home to their partner? How do they deal with this? In my experience there are rules between couples and obviously insurmountable trust. Break it and you lose the love of your life.
Great subject matter at any time of the day!
Play Reading: Whore
Let the storytelling begin!
‘Whore’ is a collection of monologues based on true events; about sex workers who live in Auckland, New Zealand. After extensive research, meetings and interviews; the work can (now) start.
The stories have unique titles called: Illegal Migrant, ‘Married Woman’, ‘Transgender’, ‘Underage Sex Worker’, ‘Rent Boy’ and ‘Refugee’. Performing in late May, in an alternative space: ‘charlatan clinic style’.
The cast involved: Rebecca Parr, Lee Ah Yen Faatoia and Geraldine Creff.
This project is in collaboration with up to 20 ‘creative’ people, and I am excited to be leading this process.
Join us on Facebook for all the updates –
Philip Seymour Hoffman, 1967-2014
Philip Seymour Hoffman, one of the most talented stage and screen actors of his generation, was found dead in his Greenwich Village apartment today, at the age of 46.
Update: The lights of Broadway will dim at 7:45 p.m. on Wednesday, January 5th in honor of Philip Seymour Hoffman.
Labyrinth Theater will hold a community prayer and candlelight vigil Wednesday, February 5th at 6:30pm in the courtyard of the Bank Street Theater (located at 155 Bank Street). The prayer will be lead by Labyrinth Company member Fr. Jim Martin.
The cause of death is apparently a drug overdose: The Daily News reports that “Hoffman was found alone with a needle in his arm in the bathroom of his apartment.”
Although known nationally as a movie actor — he won an Oscar for his starring role in “Capote” in 2005 — he was active in New York theater. He appeared on…
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Storytelling Never Stops
Just finished #projectsalt.
Some people ask “How long did it take to write the play?” or “Does it take a long time to produce a show?” or maybe “Do you make any money, from theatre?”
Nothing is guaranteed. Writing a play takes as long as it takes, really. Normally 6-12 months in my experience. I walk around with the story (in my head) for a while, before I pen anything.
Is money important in theatre?
To be honest, I don’t think so. Just keep waiting tables, teaching violin, working at the bookshop and (never stop) believing in the cause.
Inspiration comes from the street: people’s behaviours, graffiti, shop windows, the smell of cinnamon, small children, truth and sex.
I have my next play on my person, strapped invisibly to my body.
Will tweet about it soon.
Henry’s Poem From #projectsalt
The girl sits with attitude
Wearing chocolate-scented fragrance
Wrapped in colourful reflections
She dreams of the ocean
Running with the wolves
Clad in skin-tight femininity
The girl sits with assertion
Hearing nothing in her path
Drowned in memoirs of iconic Marilyn
Written for ‘Lilly’ by ‘Henry – ‘salt’ by Melissa Fergusson