JENNIFER DIRECTING MADAME BUTTERFLY
Jennifer is directing the Puccini opera Madame Butterfly for the Art Deco Festival, in Napier on 13, 15, 17,19 February 2018 at Napier Municipal Theatre. It will feature Pene Pati,Toni Marie Palmertree, Rebecca Afonwy-Jones,and Gary Griffiths, with musical direction by Jose Aparicio and design by John Verryt. Click here for info and to book.
Madame Butterfly tells the story of a discarded wife, left in a war-torn city after a brief marriage to Pinkerton, an officer in the armed forces stationed there during the conflict. She waits in vain for his return, clinging on to the image she had created for herself as his wife, only to be disappointed and betrayed, and faced with a heartbreaking decision.
JENNIFER TO PERFORM FALLING IN LOVE AGAIN
Jennifer will perform her Marlene Dietrich cabaret Falling in Love Again as part of the Art Deco Festival at Century Theatre, MCG, Napier on 16 and 17 Febrary 2018. Click here for info and to book.
Jennifer brings to life the sultry performances of screen goddess Marlene Dietrich with sizzling physicality. Wearing re-creations of Dietrich's exquisite gowns, she invites you to relive the glamour and seductive charm of this legendary icon, performing classic songs from Dietrich's films and recordings in her distinctive style.
The Press: "When Jennifer Ward-Lealand makes her appeaance as Marlene Dietrich in decolette and white fur, the audience is well and truly anticipating the chanteuse - Ward-Lealand, one of New Zealand's top performers, knows this and doesn't disappoint ... The audience laughed, swayed and got moist in the eyes ... Jennifer Ward-Lealand's performance was scintillating".
The Nelson Mail: "A consummate performance from our fine acresss, Jennifer Ward-Lealand, brought this magnetic screen and stage godddess to life. The mannerisms, movements, phrasing, and husky smoking voice were all there".
MICHAEL TO STAR IN AN ILIAD
Michael will be the sole actor in An Iliad by Lisa Peterson and Denis O'Hare, directed by Jonathon Hendry, at Fortune Theatre, Dunedin, on 7-21 April 2018. Click here to book.
The guy at the bar has quite a story to tell. Homer's epic masterpiece, The Iliad, is condensed into an intimate, incisive, urgent evening of theatre. A sole performer is joined on stage by a musician to tell the tale of the great Trojan War and Achilles' victory over brave Hector. This sweeping and powerful story collides with our world and delivers startlingly modern results. Has anything really changed?
Musical virtuosity combines with exceptional storytelling to create a theatrical experience like no other.
JENNIFER AND MICHAEL IN THE ADVENTURES OF SUZY BOON
Jennifer plays Warden Touro in all six episodes of the second season of The Adventures of Suzy Boon, and Michael has a cameo in last episode, playing himself. It was filmed in December 2017.
The series stars Kura Forrester as Suzy Boon. Click here to watch the first season.
MICHAEL DIRECTED 800 WORDS
In season 3, Michael directed episodes 3, 4, 11 and 12. The first half of the season has aired in Australia and New Zealand, with the second half of the season scheduled to air in 2018.
Season 2 is now available on dvd. Michael directed episodes 2.3, 2.4, 2.9, 2.10, 2.13 and 2.14. In North America, it is currently airing on PBS stations.
800 Words is produced by South Pacific Pictures/Seven Productions. It stars Erik Thomson, Melina Vidler, and Benson Jack Anthony. Click here for info.
MICHAEL DIRECTED WESTSIDE
Michael is directing episodes 4.7 and 4.8 from 20 November 2017 until mid-January 2018.
Westside season 3 is available on dvd. Michael directed episodes 3, 4, 7 and 8.
JENNIFER STARS IN VERMILION
Jennifer plays Darcy in feature film Vermilion, which completed filming on 10 April 2017. It also stars Theresa Healey, Goretti Chadwick, Peter Feeney, and Emily Campbell (and a cameo by Michael Hurst!) It is written and directed by Dorthe Scheffmann and produced by Michele Fantl.
Vermilion tells the story of a group of women who are close to each other – mothers, daughters, friends and neighbors. Some of their relationships are good and some are broken. The events of one summer month changes their lives forever.
Click here for the NZ Film Commission's press release on Vermilion.