Covid Not Putting a Stop to Meteor Creative Development Project
Freshly developed creative works are still on the menu at The Meteor with premiere showcase and development seasons of four new shows from the theatre’s Boil Up project.
The Boil Up, a new creative development program at The Meteor, has been stewing behind closed doors for the last six months, with four original works being served up over September and October 2021, providing NZ is in a Covid Alert Level that will enable public gatherings.
“The country is in a state of uncertainty right now, but this isn’t stopping The Meteor team and our Boil Up participants from continuing to work on this project, so it can proceed when it is able to.” Says Founder of Boil Up Deborah Nudds. “Of our four shows the solo works have been rehearsing individually and the ensemble pieces via zoom. The Meteor team has been offering support remotely to keep things moving.”
A project funded by Creative New Zealand, Boil Up was born out of a desire to foster and fuel new creative works coming out of the Waikato and going on to other cities, festivals and performing opportunities.
“The local Kirikiriroa creative scene is thriving, but so many works only do a hometown season.” Says Nudds. “Boil Up was born with the goal to show creators that the reach of their stories can extend further than their backyard and aims to equip participants with the skills to take their works to the next level and other places.”
“The construction of the Waikato Regional Theatre means that there’ll be another opportunity for local stories to be shared on a bigger stage” comments Nudds. Like the ethos of the Regional Theatre, Boil Up is about celebrating the creativity and diversity in the Waikato and hopes to give local creators tools and experience so that they can one day perform on the Regional Theatre Stage.
At the beginning of the year The Meteor conceived The Boil Up and following discussions with key stakeholders: Creative Waikato and WINTEC, put out a call to the creative community. They were looking for applications of work/creative concepts that could be developed from idea to performance through a tasty blend of mentorship, workshops, support, and collaboration. The call was met, and at its outset the project had ten new works to be developed with four going on to be showcased this year and a further four in 2022.
“We set out looking for people who were ready to take creative risks with their new idea” says Nudds. “A really good mix of people and projects have come through Boil Up. We’ve had theatre and dance works featuring space DJ’s, family funerals, Sir Edmund Hilary, Kapa Haka, house party drinking culture, mental health, relationships, whaanau, and Cluedo” says Nudds. “ It has been awesome to see shows develop over time as they work with professional arts industry mentors from Bats Theatre, Auckland Live and our community.”
Kicking off the 2021 Boil Up showcase season will be Conor Maxwell’s Junior on September 22nd-25th with Lily Empson’s Elsie and Hinerangimarie Berryman’s Atāmira having seasons in October and James Smith’s wish I was there in the first week of November.
The other works developed in the inaugural Boil Up project include The Sherpa and the Beekeeper by Matt Kambic, The Phantom’s Ecstatic Vision by Melanie Allison, Katherine and Her Famous Brothers by Hugh McCarroll, and House Party by Jonathan Hawthorn, Kat Hill, Sherrie Roue-Walker, and Malia Otukolo-Johnson.
When commenting on how four out of the original ten works are being showcased this year, Nudds makes it clear that the project is not about competition. “It was never about separating participants into making it to the next round and not. The selection process is and has always been about who is ready now and who will be ready next. Four works are being showcased in 2021 and we are still working with the other shows in their development and their own potential seasons in the future.”
All September shows, Covid Alert Levels permitting, will be taking place with socially distant seating and audiences are encouraged to visit themeteor.co.nz for more information on Boil Up and tickets to each of the works being presented in 2021.