Bill Guest

Transitions, Four Decades of Toi Whakaari:NZ Drama School


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Paperback, 173 x 236mm
412 pages

May 2010

From its humble beginnings in Cuba Street Wellington to a world-class facility in Te Whaea: National Dance & Drama Centre, the journey of the New Zealand Drama School has been marked by many challenges and turning points. Its very existence today is testament to the vision and tenacity of the School’s six directors and the Boards who stood with those directors in their struggle to secure a permanent home for the School.

In the mid 1980s the Drama School began to look at the world through a Māori as well as a Pākehā lens as a way to build more dynamic practitioners for stage and screen. This bold move has recently been articulated in a fresh way, exploring the underlying values of Te Ao Māori to challenge assumptions about the very nature of theatre in the twenty-first century, enabling the School to be more articulate about the focus of its work and the very purpose of performance.  

From just nine students under the inspired guidance of Nola Millar, the School has become a multidisciplinary performing arts institution with over 150 student actors, designers, directors, technicians, performing arts managers and costumiers. Passionately written and vividly illustrated, this book celebrates that extraordinary transition and is a tribute to the achievements of all who have contributed to what is now is now truly of its place: Aotearoa New Zealand.


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