Acting newcomer Rachel Rose, of Arthurs Point, says more
Wakatipu residents should join in the fun and camaraderie
of amateur dramatics. Photo by James Beech.
An Arthurs Point mother was inspired to give acting a go
by Sir Ian McKellen and is now starring as one of the
, the new comedy from Remarkable Theatre.
Rachel Rose decided the play is the thing as a member of the
audience enjoying the Lord of the Rings star's
sold-out one-man show in Wanaka in June last year. The
Academy Award-nominated thespian said during question time
that the best way into acting was to just get on stage and do
''I thought, there's an idea,'' Mrs Rose laughed.
''I love going to the theatre but I hadn't been in theatre
She caught the acting bug when she participated in Tracing
Hamlet in Wanaka, which was ''a fantastic experience and
a huge amount of fun''.
While rehearsing, Arrowtown entertainer David Cantwell
suggested she audition for Calendar Girls, which is
based on a true story and has been a hit film.
Hoping to be involved somehow backstage, Mrs Rose found
herself auditioning in front of director Giles Burton for one
of the six female characters who make up the core cast.
''I think he was looking for people who take direction, not
necessarily the world's most experienced actors,'' Mrs Rose
''I thought the audition went terribly and I didn't hear
anything for a couple of weeks,'' she said.
Production manager ''Melanie [Grindell] called me and my
reaction was 'How am I going to break this to my husband?'''
Mrs Rose plays Chris, the alpha-female best friend of Annie
whose husband is stricken with leukaemia, which prompts them
to organise a fundraising calendar starring Women's Institute
members posing tastefully nude. The calendar turns the group
into unlikely international celebrities.
''I think I was probably a bit like Chris in my teens,'' Mrs
''I was quite loud and I was the bad influence in my
friendships. And that's the thing about Chris, she hasn't
really grown up and doesn't have an off-button.''
Personality clashes between the women provide some of the
deadpan Yorkshire humour of the play.
The English resident of New Zealand of 17 years is confident
this will successfully cross over to Wakatipu audiences.
Calendar Girls is staged in the Queenstown Memorial
Hall on September 12 to 14.
''It's such a human story, I think people will relate to
it,'' Mrs Rose said.