The Battalion - 1 May 2019

The Battalion - 1 May 2019

Wednesday 1 May 2019, 6:30pm—8:30pm

This May Te Rākau Theatre Trust turns its Theatre Marae style to the story of New Zealand’s 28th Māori Battalion with Helen Pearse Otene’s ‘The Battalion’, with students from St Mary’s College and St Patrick’s College.

Restriction: NONE

ticket price guide

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Adult $18.00
Child <12 $7.50
Concession $10.00
Student $10.00

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Standard Tickets

Ticket Type Price Qty
(Sales Ended: 01 May 2019 @ 5:30 pm)
Child <12  
(Sales Ended: 01 May 2019 @ 5:30 pm)
(Sales Ended: 01 May 2019 @ 5:30 pm)
(Sales Ended: 01 May 2019 @ 5:30 pm)

event information


The Battalion is a moving story about friendship, loyalty, madness and redemption - seen through the eyes of Paora Matene, a WW|| veteran, and relayed to his wayward charges Rimini and George.

Sent back to their whānau in the 'one cow town' of Tamariri, Rimini and George aren't interested in any of the locals or their family history - they just want to get back to the city.

It was the same for five young men in 1939. Drawn in by the excitement of war, they run away to the army and join the 28th Māori Battalion. Thus begins the adventure of a lifetime. From their training in England, to their first encounter with the enemy in Greece, these young men experience both the bonds and the horror of war, and much is left behind.

The two stories collide and the past is confronted with the youngsters learning valuable life lessons.

WARNING: Depictions of war, sound effects of gun fire and use of lighting effects.

Creative paepae: Jim Moriarty, Helen Pearse-Otene, Jeremy Davis, Kimberley Skipper, Lisa Maule, Cara Waretini, Aneta Pond

The power of the work is in seeing young people completely inhabit the world of the production, playing roles we usually associate with adults and doing so with passion, sincerity and aroha. Many members of the Māori Battalion were just kids when they left, and seeing them portrayed by actual rangatahi is a powerful and sobering experience.

Te Rākau’s Theatre Marae programmes promote aroha, foster whanaungatanga, enhance the mana of everyone involved, and are delivered in a kaupapa Māori environment that is nurturing and holistic.

The Theatre Marae environment challenges students to develop skills in a variety of areas, including: lateral thinking, spatial awareness and coordination, text analysis, self awareness and presentation, resilience, time management, and inter-personal communication. The outcome is a high quality school production and enriching experience for audience members, performers, and their families. Students may also achieve NCEA credits.

“There is something poignantly moving about watching kids of diverse cultures acting out roles that their grandparents, great-grandparents or in this case, given how young they are, great great grandparents lived for real.
At one stage my hair is prickling at the back of my neck and I feel tears welling...
There are layers to the work done by Te Rākau that encompasses tikanga Māori effortlessly and I applaud them for doing so.”
Maraea Rakuraku for Theatreview

“Thank you Jim Moriarty…you are inoculating our children against racism.”

"As always, I have been inspired by the focus and dedication that Te Rakau bring to the work and by the motivation and commitment shown by the cast of students."
Helen Jones, Head of Performing Arts, St Oran’s College

"I’ve learnt so much about not just theatre and acting but tikanga in the way we work with each other in Te Rākau."
Participant 2018

"Doing Productions and Theatre with ‘Te Rakau’ has helped me to grow as an actor and as a performer. It’s also helped me realise that I’m capable to do anything, and helped me challenge myself. Being a part of this has been an unforgettable experience. I feel as if I’ve got another whanau. Faafetai, Kia Ora and thank you."
Participant 2016

"This is a wonderful opportunity for our students to work with experts in the field of the arts. The skills learnt and the talents developed are invaluable and give our students yet another opportunity on their path to success."
Principal St Catherine's College 2015

Gabriel Hall - St Mary's College
Wellington, New Zealand

Address: 15 Guilford Terrace, Thorndon