Romeo and Tusi: An Eclectically Musical Samoan/Maori Romeo and Juliet from Aotearoa/New Zealand
Houlahan, M. (2009). Romeo and Tusi: An Eclectically Musical Samoan/Maori Romeo and Juliet from Aotearoa/New Zealand. Contemporary Theatre Review, 19(3), 279-288.
Permanent Research Commons link: https://hdl.handle.net/10289/3308
Is there a distinctive New Zealand Shakespeare? What 'new' approaches to Shakespeare have originated from New Zealand? This article explores the issue by contextualising a version of Romeo and Juliet staged successfully throughout New Zealand in the late 1990s. The production is set against the background of the history of Shakespeare in New Zealand, which goes back to the arrival of Captain Cook on the Endeavour in 1769. Pacific Underground's Romeo and Tusi sought a looser and more populist kind of Shakespeare performance. They used the conceit of rehearsing the play at high school, where a M ori Romeo and a Samoan Juliet cross community boundaries. Drawing on several music genres, and performing outdoors, they generated a Shakespeare that audiences from a diverse range of ethnic and cultural communities could enjoy.