31 Jan 2012
A gripping new Auckland play explores how music can soothe the troubled minds of people living in a forgotten world.
"A family forged, even in the darkest of places"
Music and Me, a riveting new work by Manurewa-based emerging playwright Victoria Schmidt has its world premiere at the Mangere Arts Centre - Ngā Tohu o Uenuku this month.
Music and Me is raw and poetic, while also funny, with fantastic lines. It is guaranteed to pull at your heartstrings.
The story tells of the harsh realities of four individuals, struggling to survive in a forgotten world of prostitution, mental illness, substance abuse, depression and risking all for a dream that is in the eye of the beholder.
"The play highlights universal themes through deep, heartfelt and outspoken characters," explains Victoria.
"on the whole, this story is about survival, broken hope, and the importance of friendship."
Music and Me is Victoria's first, full-length, professionally produced play. New Zealand-born and of Samoan background, Victoria is an acting graduate of the UNITEC School of Performing Screen Arts. She has been seen in numerous theatre productions, most recently in The Factory by Kila Kokonut Krew in 2011.
"This show is about creating awareness of every day people, surviving in the only way they know how,"she says.
Directed by Asalemo Tofete (Toi Whakaari acting graduate, The Minister's Son, Angels in America Part I: Millenium Approaches, Polyzygotic, The Factory). The production features some of New Zealand's best seasoned and upcoming Pacific talent. The cast includes Iaheto Ah Hi (Sione's Wedding, The Market, Matariki, Running With the Bulls,Tautai. Sione's 2: Unfinished Business), Toi Whakaari acting graduate Natano Keni (Privates VS Ninjas, Once Were Samoans), the playwright Victoria Schmidt (Sione's Wedding, Running With The Bulls, Othello Polynesia, Tautai, The Factory) and recent Pacific Institute of Performing Arts graduate and choreographer Amanaki Lelei Prescott-Faletua (Mixed Nuts, Pollyhood in Mumuland, VOGUE).
A resident of Manurewa, Victoria says it was important to set the play in South Auckland, to support the story and to reflect our unique society that is full of colourful characters.
Funded with the support of the Auckland Council Creative New Zealand Communities Scheme, Music and Me will be on show at the Mangere Arts Centre from for a five-night season, opening on Tuesday 14 February.
About the Show:
Music and Mefollows the lives and friendships of four outcasts living on the same poverty-stricken street - an old man sinking deeper into dementia, a male hustler-addict always looking to make a quick buck, a street poet who finds solace in gracing the public with her passion for rhyme, and a business-minded drag queen who runs the local beauty parlour.
This is a story that reveals how music can soothe a troubled mind and the desperate measures taken to be able to survive in a forgotten world.
Written by Victoria Schmidt.
Directed by Asalemo Tofete
For more information, please contact:
Asalemo Tofete (Director)
Phone: 021 2092942
Title: Music and Me
Venue: Mangere Arts Centre - Nga Tohu o Uenuku, Corner Bader Drive and Orly Avenue, Mangere, Auckland
Date: 14 February 2012
Info: General Admission $20, Concession $15