The Wellingtonista

Random stuff about Wellington since 2005

UPDATE: Due to that dastardly weather causing havoc across Wellington today the Beer & Blade Vanuatu Fundraiser has been postponed until tomorrow night, Friday, 15 May.

You may recall, amidst all the atrocities that occur on a far too regular basis throughout the world, that in mid-March Vanuatu was hit by Cyclone Pam. The cyclone killed over 10 people, impacted on the lives of tens of thousands of people in Vanuatu and neighbouring islands and destroying infrastructure. The island of Tanna was especially devasted with many of the crops of cava, coconut and coffee, that contribute a large amount to the economy being destroyed.

This Thursday, 14th May, you have the chance to do some good while drinking beer as Boar & Blade, Tuatara and Mojo are fundraising at The Third Eye.

Mojo Coffee, who got the last of the coffee beans from Tanna before Cyclone Pam hit, teamed up with Tuatara and have made the new Vanuatu Coffee Porter. Not only can you get your lips around a tasty porter, perfectly matched by the weather we are having, you can also get your haircut/beard trimmed by the guys from Boar & Blade AND you can be an awesome human and donate $$ to the coffee growers of Vanuatu to help them get them back on their feet.

Boar and Blade Fundraiser

You may think that this will leave you feeling fantastic and you’d be right! You’ll feel even better when you realise you can get all of this for only $20. And fear not! If the idea of a porter does not appeal you can choose any other pint that’s on offer, with all proceeds assisting coffee growers who supply beans to Mojo Coffee in cyclone-hit Vanuatu.

Your beard could look as good as the ones on these faces!

Your beard could look as good as the ones on these faces!


Before we’re in the theatre the performers come to us. “Allo” they cry in their French accents “You are looking gorgeous tonight!” They sweep us before them into their seedy world. It’s part cabaret, part shabby theatre, part sophisticated storytelling, part improv. It feels like a troupe of travelling actors has arrived in town and set up for a few nights only. The walls of the theatre are covered in dark fabric. There’s a little alcove for the on-form technician (Matt Eller) but he is mostly hidden behind the row of audience seats.

The title character is similarly hidden in the shifting people who play him. Every one in the cast (Susie Berry, Andrew Paterson, Maaka Pohatu, Jonothan Price, Comfrey Sanders) play him at some stage – person and voice. Even an audience member is enticed into playing him. Audience members are key to this production. We are characters – in the play and in the world of the play; we are stage hands helping with props; we are the props; we’re interval dancers. The cast are adept at interacting with the audience and playing off what they are given. They’re gentle with people who don’t want to be involved. Interspersed through the story of the wicked Don Juan are songs. They range through Kayne West  to Erykah Badu to Fiona Apple. All the cast have great voices. Susie Berry is a particular stand out for me here.

This iteration of Don Juan feels like you’re being told the story of an outrageous friend of a friend. Incredibly entertaining. Go with a group if you can because it will be more fun that way.

  • Don Juan on at Circa Theatre until 23 May 2015.


As part of the New Zealand International Comedy Festival the Playshop Performance Company presents Grimm Bedtime Stories.

I took along my three children aged 6, 10 and 12 on Saturday and I’ll allow them to share their experience. Let me say that as an adult I found it super enjoyable and laugh out loud funny. There were heaps of gags including a few subtle ones for the grown-ups in the audience. The show had a small cast, and they were energetic and talented. It is aimed to 5-10 year olds, but we found the 6, 10, 12 and 42 year old all thought it was excellent.

There is only one more show, this Saturday the 16 May. Get down to it!


Malo, 10:
When we came in to the theatre I was asked to do a drawing of a witch. It wasn’t the best witch I had ever drawn. We got some chips, sat down for a bit then a staff memeber said to us that we could go in. When we went in I thought that the set was very creative. Then it started. It was a great performance and it was about the best play I have ever seen (not that I”ve seen many). Note to self: watch more plays. But it was really great. Five starts great show for the little kids #lol

Finn, 12:
I am 12 years old. I went to the Hannah Theatre to watch “Grimm Bedtime Stories”. When we went inside we were asked to do drawings of treasure, witches, food and monsters. I drew some treasure, these pictures were later incorporated into the play. We soon went into the theatre, the stage was sset up with two beds and a set of drawers (all made from cardboard).

The play was about two kids who invited the “brothers Grimm” to share stories. There was live music from “Ludwig Grimm”. He played a variety of instruments including a guitar, an accordion and a cymbal.

The play was hilarious and well acted. I would recommend it to anyone 6-106.



murdermysteryfinalall logosChampagne, canapes and cold-blooded murder are three of our favourite things, so we’re pretty happy to be able to have a double pass to give away to The Grand Speakeasy Murder Mystery on this Saturday, May 16.

Romeo was found tragically poisoned in the speakeasy, join the investigation into his murder and help a psychic detective solve the crime.

The Grand Speakeasy Murder Mystery is an interactive 1920s themed murder mystery produced by Courtney L’amour.  The murder mystery combines the traditional audience participation murder mystery format with the performance elements of a Burlesque and Cabaret show.

“We have such a great range of performers involved in the production.” says Courtney, “The combination of improv and comedy from the actors, alongside the visual entertainment from the other performers is a great mix, and creates a wonderful, vibrant atmosphere.”

Actors will be playing out the live murder mystery interspersed by performances from established local singers, magicians and burlesque performers. The show features

  • Venus Starr
  • Courtney L’amour
  • Fanciforia Foxglove
  • Anna Miranda
  • Mike Kay – Psychic Detective
  • Charleston Dancers
  • Music by the Klaus Vermilion Quartet

There are a bunch of prizes to win on the night including dance class vouchers from Studio L’amour, tickets to The Menagerie, a photoshoot from Paradox Photography, tickets to a pro comedy night at VK’s Comedy & Blues Bar, headpieces from BlackWidow Fascinators, rental vouchers from Costume Cave, passes to New Zealand Burlesque Festival shows and more.

The show takes place at the suitably vintage Dransfield House – which if you haven’t heard of it is a historic places trust-registered building at the top of 335 Willis Street. Be sure to dress to kill in the Speakeasy style to be able to win prizes for best-dressed!

You can buy tickets, which include a glass of champagne on entrance and canapes, for $59 via Eventfinder, but because we love you, we’ve got a double pass to give away. Just leave us a comment before midday Thursday telling us your favourite thing about the 1920s, and we’ll draw a winner at random. Fabulous.


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