Storytelling with bells on

Thoroughly Modern Maui, Knox Church, Thursday October 20 (No further shows)

Half man and half god, Maui — the "Maori superman" — is transported into the modern world complete with rhinestones and rebellious tunes in the capable hands of performer Rutene Spooner — the "love child of Shirley Bassey and Prince Tui Teka," as he describes himself.

An enthusiastic audience packed the pews and were wowed by big ballads and rocking rhythms, as Spooner and his backing band Pork Bones and Harmony delivered a masterful night of entertainment.

A gentle education on casual racism was delivered with rhinestones and whit — never has such a serious message been shared with so much toe-tapping style.

His comic and confident command of the stage was rewarded with an uproarious standing ovation.