TheatreFest 2024: A New Direction

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TheatreFest 2024: A New Direction

TNZ announces a New Direction for our Festival.

Why the new direction?

Theatre festivals have been part of our landscape for over 50 years. This year, we asked for and received feedback on our current framework from local and regional festivals. TNZ has initiated some significant changes based on this feedback.

The benefits of TheatreFest have always been in the giving and receiving of professional adjudication to participants, and we see this as its continuing strength. In this changing theatrical landscape and in consideration of feedback received, we look at how we could best use this festival not only in a competitive environment but also as a celebration of community theatre in NZ.

For administrative purposes our membership has been divided into 6 Regions, each one the responsibility of a regional representative on the National Executive. Local Regional Reps are now your first contact point for Theatre New Zealand and TheatreFest.

Regional Reps on the National Executive are -

Region 1 Northland and Auckland: Deb Steele
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Region 2 Taranaki Waikato and Bay of Plenty: Ewen Coleman
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Region 3 Manawatu, Hawkes Bay, Gisborne: Adrienne Hurley
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Region 4 Wairarapa, Wellington and Horowhenua: Linda Voice
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Region 5 Nelson, Marlborough, Canterbury and West Coast: Maz Ollett
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Region 6 Otago, Southland: Blaise Barham
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Also:
President Paul Percy This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Vice President Blaise Barham This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Treasurer Steven Arnold This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Secretary Margaret Robertson This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
TheatreFest Advisor Ewen Colman This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Local TheatreFest:

Local TheatreFest continues as we have done for many decades, the chance to try out new ideas, get some new plays going, invite more people and have fun remain. The opportunity for feedback, travel and competition continues as a part of TheatreFest. There is no change to this model, the local Festival remains autonomous, hosted by local groups.

Current practices at Local Festivals will continue: the accredited adjudicated will provide adjudication from the stage (5 minutes) the 10-minute Green Room and the follow up written report. Support for getting the local festival in place will be provided by your Regional Representative, and the TheatreFest Advisor

Awards will be given in the same categories as with previous festivals.

Local Festivals & Dates

Region 1
Northland – 27 July
Auckland – 3 August

Region 2
Waikato/BOP/Taranaki – 27 & 28 July

Region 3
Hawkes Bay - 27 & 28 July
Manawatu/Whanganui – 3 August

Region 4
Wellington – 10 August
Wairarapa – 10 & 11 August

Region 5
Nelson/Marlborough – 3 August
West Coast – 20 July
Canterbury – 3 & 4 August

Region 6
South Canterbury – 17 & 18 August
Otago – 27 & 28 July

Regional Festivals & Dates

Regional TheatreFest are now considered to be a major regional celebration of theatre. At the regional level there will be no immediate adjudication from the stage, and no Greenroom discussion. However, within a week each adjudicator, as a theatre coach, will be available to have a 15+ minute follow up Zoom with the directors and / or teams that they have already seen in the locals TheatreFest. Following the Regional TheatreFest each team will receive written feedback.

Upper North Island Regional TheatreFest (Regions 1&2) – 17 & 18 August
Northland, Auckland, Waikato includes Taranaki and Bay of Plenty.
A two Adjudicator panel from regions 1&2 will give a reassessment on the presentations they adjudicated previously at a local level.

Lower North Island Regional TheatreFest (Regions 3&4) – 24 & 25 August
Gisborne, Hawkes Bay, Manawatu/Whanganui, Wairarapa, Wellington.
A two Adjudicator panel from regions 3&4 will give a reassessment on the presentations they adjudicated previously at a local level.

Upper South Island Regional TheatreFest (Region 5) – 17 & 18 August
Buller West Coast, Top of the South (Marlborough/Nelson) and Canterbury
A two Adjudicator panel from within this region will give a reassessment on the presentations they adjudicated previously at a local level.

Lower South Island Regional TheatreFest (Region 6) – 24 & 25 August
Upper Otago, Otago/Southland, and Canterbury
A two Adjudicator panel from within this region will give a reassessment on the presentations they adjudicated previously at a local level.

On the evening of the Regional TheatreFest each team will be presented with a Certificate of Participation.

After the Final Regional TheatreFest, TNZ and the adjudicator panel meet to decide on the presentations to be invited to perform at SHOWCASE and the awards. It is expected that a minimum notice of three weeks prior to SHOWCASE will be given to enable performances to arrange travel and accommodation.

TheatreFest Regional Award

Performances from regional levels will be considered for these awards, which will be announced at ShowCase and presented at the Theatre New Zealand AGM immediately following ShowCase.

Distinctive Emerging Talent

Jannat Aitchison Memorial Award Donated by: Joan Ford, Denise Walsh, Nannette Wright.

Bryan Aitken Summer School Scholarship (fee payment only)

 

APRA Award

Best use of soundscape and sound-effects, including recorded music.

Michael Norris Award

Donated by the Norris family. For use of Original and/or Live Music.

Creative Design Award

Total Visual Concept and Execution.

He Pito Aronui Award – The Seeding of Creative Potential

Donated by Education Perfect. This award is incentivising and acknowledging new writing and performance, which must be created by and contain Māori or Pasifika content, featuring a culturally apposite cast. Entries in this category, are also eligible for all other appropriate categories.

Excellence in Acting

Recognising excellence in acting.

ShowCase - (previously TheatreFest ShowCase)

A Celebration of Theatre

SHOWCASE becomes a standalone Festival presenting the best of Community Theatre throughout New Zealand as chosen by a team of Regional TheatreFest adjudicators. TheatreFest is about engaging with theatre and nurturing craft, and so there is an educative element in the adjudication process. Showcase will be held on the Saturday afternoon and evening. TheatreFest is the competitive levels, while SHOWCASE is the celebration of the art.

We are presenting a SHOWCASE of theatre in New Zealand; the SHOWCASE performances will be celebrated as being at the highest level. Groups will have already received an adjudication from the stage (Local TheatreFest) as well as a Green Room and Zoom discussion, and 2 written reports. SHOWCASE is more a festival and an opportunity to present theatre at the highest level, there is no further adjudication element.

SHOWCASE will be compered by an MC, linking the audience and the performances, and providing a commentary on theatre.

All SHOWCASE performances from the evening of theatre, will go into the Book of Honour and receive a certificate of participation, and a Drama Development Trust presentation. Awards decided at the Regional TheatreFest will be announced at ShowCase and presented at the TNZ AGM, the following day.

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