Artists’ props begged and borrowed

Arts Festival Dunedin production manager Gwen Macready at Kavanagh Auditorium yesterday holds...
Arts Festival Dunedin production manager Gwen Macready at Kavanagh Auditorium yesterday holds items she sourced for the show Live Live Cinema: Little Shop of Horrors. Photo: Peter McIntosh.
Satisfying the demands of artists can be a challenge.

Arts Festival Dunedin production manager Gwen Macready has to source the goods the festival artists set as criteria for their performance.

The requests are met to ensure the 59 performances of 26 shows across 10 Dunedin venues run smoothly.

Yesterday, Mrs Macready was getting the final items on the rider for the performances of Live Live Cinema: Little Shop of Horrors at Kavanagh Auditorium at 8pm tonight and 4.30pm tomorrow.

The 24 items range from scrap metal to a Savoy cabbage and was the most extensive list of demands during this year’s festival.

"We have no budget so you have to borrow everything, you have to be really resourceful and you’re ringing people up and asking for crazy stuff."

A metal coat rack was borrowed from the Mayfair Theatre and scrap metal was borrowed from festival director Nicholas McBryde.

She found the steel buckets the actors needed by putting a request on social media.

Some items for artists were more difficult to source than others.

English transmedia artist Simon Wilkinson needed shipping containers for his show The Cube on the Museum Reserve and British actor Guy Masterson needed an old trunk for his show Under Milk Wood at Fortune Theatre tonight.

He also requested bananas to be left backstage for sustenance during the two performances.

Mrs Macready also had to find 300 volunteers for the festival, including 12 actors to dress as whales and beach themselves on the lower Octagon for the street theatre performance Whales.

Finding the empty wine barrels for the dance performance The Wine Project in the Athenaeum basement which finishes tonight was "a mission" and she had to suffice with barrels from The New Zealand Whisky Company in Oamaru.

The ivy the cast wanted scattered around the basement was from Mrs Macready’s garden.

"I was cutting ivy at 10.30pm the night before the performance."


The demands of art

A list of demands for Arts Festival Dunedin show Live Live Cinema:

Little Shop of Horrors.

• An ironing board.

• Two metal coat racks.

• Metal step ladder.

• Two wooden chairs.

• Tall music stand.

• A microphone stand.

• Four plastic crates.

• A plastic tub.

• Two metal buckets.

• A small branch with dry leaves.

• A bucket half-filled with gravel.

• Scrap metal pieces.

• A wooden box.

• Pieces of scrap timber.

• A steel chain.

• Butane cartridges.

• An empty water cooler bottle.

• Eight paperback books.

• A cardboard box for shipping a bicycle.

• Empty bottles.

• A Savoy cabbage.

• A head of celery.

• Two packets of instant noodles.

• A box of breakfast cereal.

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