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Rita and Douglas - Nelson Arts Festival


Sun 16 Oct 2011, 7:30pm–9:00pm
Mon 17 Oct 2011, 7:30pm–9:00pm

Where: Theatre Royal Nelson, 78 Rutherford St, Nelson, Nelson / Tasman

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Early bird (closes 4 Sept) A res: $44.00
  • Early bird (closes 4 Sept) B res: $39.00
  • Full A res: $48.00
  • Full B res: $43.00
  • Additional fees may apply

Listed by: Jacq Bell

‘That first night, Gordon, that I slept with you, I wanted to release music in you – and I succeeded in my desire.’ Rita Angus to Douglas Lilburn. 1942

Featuring Jennifer Ward-Lealand and Michael Houstoun

Adapted from the letters of Rita Angus by Dave Armstrong

Conrad Newport - director

Jill Trevelyan - biographical and image adviser

Produced by Armstrong Creative

Rita Angus and Douglas Lilburn met in the early 1940s. The recently divorced painter and the young composer had a brief but passionate affair. Living in virtual poverty and struggling with health issues, Rita Angus went on to single-mindedly produce a stunning body of work.

Two of the country’s leading performers, Jennifer Ward-Lealand and Michael Houstoun, join together to present the words, music and images of two of New Zealand’s cultural icons.

Rita and Douglas combines stunning theatre, music and art to tell a most unusual love story that lies at the heart of New Zealand’s cultural history.

‘More than the story of a friendship, Rita and Douglas is a novel and captivating look at the personal and creative life of one of New Zealand’s greatest painters, and at what it means to be an artist.’
- Laura Williamson, Theatreview

Supported by The Estate of Rita Angus, The Lilburn Trust, Creative New Zealand and Te Papa Picture Library.

Nelson Arts Festival, 7- 24 October 2011.