The eighth incarnation of the New Zealand Improv Festival comes to BATS Theatre this 4-8 October, with a stellar line-up of spontaneous theatre and instant comedy performed and directed by top improvisors from around New Zealand and the world. Once again, Wellington is host to the largest national meeting of improv practitioners in NZ, where shows are created from nothing, skills are sharpened, and moments of magic are made.
This year’s festival presents a variety of improvised work in four parts: Improdome, a king-of-the-hill style improv team battle at 6:30pm; the Spontaneous Showcase, featuring seven seasoned directors bringing their work to life with a brand new cast gathered just days before, at 8pm; This One Time, a nightly tasting plate of performances from hand-selected improvisors with a range of themes at 9:30pm; and our late shows Grab Bag and Kiddie Time at 11pm Thursday and Friday, bringing you anything-goes improv way, way after dark.
“This year our programme allows us to show off new forms and to challenge the assumptions people have about what improv can and can’t do,” says director Jennifer O’Sullivan. “From Sweden’s Peter Nordstrand’s Nothing But The Truth, a totally improvised trial where the audience is the jury, to Death Comes To Us All by Katherine Weaver and Wiremu Tuhiwai exploring what mortality means to our lives, to Linda Calgaro’s The Circle of Sound and Story using soundscape and music to inspire and shape a night of storytelling - anything and everything is possible through this art form. Plus there’s the much-loved late-night madness and competitive shows to bring our audience mischief and mayhem!”
Most notably, this festival will feature 17 different performances that will all be created the very week of the festival, showcasing the impressive direction, collaborative nature, and sheer skill present in the improvisation community and in the guests selected to lead shows. The full programme is available at nzimprovfestival.co.nz and updates are ongoing on our Facebook page.
“Something of value will always materialise before our very eyes" - Theatreview
“It’s only when you look back over what was created ‘in the moments’ that you realise what small miracles have occurred.” - Theatreview
The New Zealand Improv Festival was started in 2008 by Merrilee McCoy and Derek Flores, gathering improvisational theatre companies from around the nation (and around the globe) to present new work, learn new skills and make connections across the industry.
Across this year’s festival every cast, crew, and production will come together in unique combinations, creating spontaneous comedy and theatre every single night. With a range of shows and directors, and players from all around New Zealand (and the world!) audiences are in for a once-in-a-lifetime treat every time. Tickets to shows can be purchased via the BATS Theatre website, including season passes (any three shows for $39).
NEW ZEALAND IMPROV FESTIVAL - WELLINGTON
4-8 October at 6:30pm, 8:00pm, 9:30pm, with 11pm (Thursday and Friday only)
All performances at BATS Theatre, 1 Kent Terrace
Full $18, Concession $15, Groups 6+ $14
Three show pass $39, Late shows only $10
All bookings at www.bats.co.nz or call 04 802 4175