What's Good this Week : : Theatre & Festivals

Lots happening. First off, the ATC show To Kill A Mockingbird has opened with an excellent cast led by Simon Prast to warm, albeit not ecstatic, reviews – the script more criticised than the production – and it is on at the Civic.


Arguably the biggest show in town this week is not traditional theatre, but The Auckland Writers Festival at the Aotea Centre, the Town Hall, the University, the Art Gallery, and various libraries. The school’s programme starts things off on Tuesday, with the adult programme starting slowly with literary lunches, the University of Auckland Border Debate on Wednesday evening, and then it’s all on by Thursday night with the Opening Gala offering a feast of writing talent, including Jeanette Winterson. Other big names include Sir David Hare, Michel Faber, Susie Orbach, Gloria Steinem, Herman Koch... The Michael King lecture is always very good: this time Helene Wong fathoms what it means to be a New Zealander of Chinese descent. Another highlight will be Poetry Idol, led by the inimitable Penny Ashton on Saturday evening. About a third of events are free so it is definitely worth coming along and joining in whatever the budget. Here.


The Architecture and Design Film Festival has just started and continues this week. I have seen Wastecooking, which was informative, inspirational and hugely entertaining, thanks to the dry wit and big heart of the journalist/activist at the heart of a mission to only cook what others throw away.  Here.


It is also the last chance to ‘bang a comedian’ at the Basement and indeed all over town as the Comedy Festival ends Saturday 14 May. Also funny, but I believe not part of the festival per se, The Topp Twins are performing with the APO at the Town Hall on Saturday night.


And if the hot weather makes you less inclined to sit inside, did you know that you can practise your jump rope in Takutai Square from Wednesday to Friday after work this week? Apparently you can. Enjoy.


Auckland Writers Festival


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