Lisa Allan has a strong feeling she once travelled with ancient Polynesian mariners from Rapa Nui to New Zealand.
The theatre creator is appearing next week in the debut performance of her show, Rapanui - the song of stone, at the New Zealand Fringe Festival.
The story connects New Zealand and Rapa Nui, also known as Easter Island, and brings to light the Waitaha people's stories of their long trip from eastern Polynesia.
Allan said it all started when she was inspired to travel to Rapa Nui last year.
She pitched a tent by the ocean and got to know the place and the locals.
"First of all I showed up and when I told the locals I was there for five weeks nobody could believe it because usually people just come in for about five days, do the rounds and off they go, so five weeks was completely unheard of."
Allan said she felt at home on Rapa Nui, hearing a similar language to Te Reo Maori and where the people also felt a strong connection to Aotearoa.
"As soon as I said I was from Aotearoa New Zealand, their eyes lit up and they said, 'Ah, New Zealand, our brothers!'"
She also started writing, weaving into her work memories, imaginings and myths and making connections which unfolded during her stay.
She described it as a magical process.
"The story that has come through is a story that I've carried with me for a long time. The island gave me space to channel that story through in a dramatic context."
Allan explores links between the two Rapanuis - the distinctive Rapanui Rock near Christchurch in New Zealand, also known as Shag Rock, and Rapa Nui, or Easter Island, in Polynesia's far east.
It is also a story of reincarnation, of which Allan is a believer.
"While I'm not of Waitaha that I know of in this lifetime through bloodline, I can remember making the trip from Easter Island to New Zealand on a Waitaha waka in a past life.
"It's very strong, it's very vivid and it doesn't go away."
"What I remember most strongly is coming in and seeing land and there are people there as if they are waiting for us, waiting on the shore.
"We came in and we were just welcomed completely. We'd never met these people before but they knew we were coming and it was just a sense of being of one part."
Rapanui - the song of stone opens at BATS Theatre in Wellington on 18 February.