The Black

above animation by Josephine Stewart – Tewhiu


New Years Eve. K Road. Central Auckland.

Drinks are poured, celebrations are loud, the kisses and colours are plentiful.

The sky cracks open with coloured light.

A sudden rumble silences the crowd. The Black is coming.

A stampede of a thousand black horses washes over the colour.

The fireworks suck themselves back in and hold their breath.

Everything is nothing now.

Cleo watches from her window, and one lone black horse watches her back.

designer notes

black mood

audience thoughts

Stop-motion animation showcases some evocative illustrations (also by Stewart-Tewhiu), and Christine Urquhart’s organic and vivid OHP projections and set design create a beautiful sense of sliding, layered images. These add to this constantly shifting cosmos where, although not fully developed, multiple realities battle against each other.

– Dione Joseph, Theatreview

Christine Urquhart’s set is the most effective use of the Basement main space I’ve seen in a while, audience snugged in on cushions on rostra overlooking a thrust performance space at ground level, the fourth wall a blank canvas on which raw, grungy live OHP designs are projected intermittently throughout the show.

– Caleb Wells, What’s Good NZ

Christine Urquhart (Set/OHP Design) and Marshall Bull (Lighting Design & Operation) created a way of using the floor to mirror Cleo’s feelings, in a way which may be a first in Aotearoa, at least. Impressive.

– Sandi Hall, Gay Express

show creator | writer | animator Josephine Stewart – Tewhiu
director Thomas Sainsbury
lighting designer Marshall Bull
venue Basment Theatre, Auckland

photographer Josh Griggs