~ 28 April – 1 May 2012 ~ Wellington ~

Nga  Maioha  O  Te  Rangikauia in  association  with  Te  Rakau  Trust  present  

THE BATTALION

A  moving  story  about  friendship,  loyalty,  madness  and  redemption  –  seen  through  the  eyes  of  Paora   Matene,  a  war  veteran,  and  relayed  to  his  wayward  charges  Rimini  and  George.  Sent  back  to  their  Whanau 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  Maori  Battalion.  Thus   begins  their  adventure  of  a  lifetime,  from  their  training  in  England  to  their  first  encounter  with  the   enemy  in  Greece.  The  two  stories  collide  and  the  past  confronted  with  the  youngsters  learning  valuable   life  lessons.

“Battalion  is  an  enchanting  and  emotional  experience.  It  is  a  play  that  implores  us  to  acknowledge  the   past  …”     NZ  International  Arts  Festival,  Lumiere  Reader  Review  

Directed  by  Jim  Moriarty   /   Written  by  Helen  Pearse-Otene  

Feedback  from  students:  

“Although there is some information on NZ’s contribution to the wars, few of us encounter the chance to  be  enlightened  about  our  history  through  a  play.  Whether  you  see  Battalion  for  the  insight  into  NZ   history,  the  exciting  dances,  the  cultural  Waiata  or  just  the  convincing  acting,  you  will  be  taken  aback  by   this  cleverly  structured  and  touching play”     —  Graci  Mills  Year  13     

“It felt like I was taken back in time”   —  Jessica  Thompson  Year  8

“I never understood why my granddad never spoke about his time in the war…until I saw this play”  —  Jonathan  Hunter  Year  12

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