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Written by award-winning playwright Dianna Fuemana, Birds stars Ali Foa'i (Tommy) and Bianca Seinafo. They each play a multitude of characters and seamlessly bring this dynamic play to life.
An ode to teenagers and their mums, Birds is an urban story told through the eyes of a young Niuean boy growing up in Auckland's Avondale Hood-Lands. Birds incorporates Avondale's iconic sites, including Avondale Community Centre, Hollywood Cinema, Rosebank Road and Riversdale Reserve.
Tommy likes hip-hop dancing, has a mad crush on the lead Kapa Haka girl at school and believes he can Kung Fu the biggest bully terrorizing the local Riversdale Park. But Moka has different plans for Tommy. Moka wants him to wake up on time for school, go to university and learn things Niuean. Two wills collide but both must win in order to fly like the Birds. Shining a light on the bond between son and mother within a small community, Birds gives voice to Avondale's hood.
Although Birds is based firmly within a Niuean perspective, its central themes of cultural detachment and familial conflict are universal within the Pacific Island community residing in Aotearoa.
Birds also marks Scotty Cotter's (The Brave, Tu) directing debut, having worked as an actor for over a decade.
Following a packed season in March 2012 at Mangere Arts Centre, this beautiful coming of age story that celebrates both teenagers and their mums in equal measure, and is one not to be missed.
The play is another new and important piece of Pacific theatre that proclaims significance and relevance alongside a strong growing foundation of contemporary Pacific stories.
Birds will definitely leave you in stitches and I guarantee its poignant messages will leave an indelible impression - the hallmark of a great play that definitely took flight.