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12:45 The Plight of Elephants

A female mahout fights to save her elephant from a world hell bent on stealing it from her. As she battles corrupt officials, hungry poachers, fanatical leaders and supreme beings, an unlikely love story unfolds and a quiet revolution ferments. The latest play by the Indian Ink Theatre company champions elephants whose numbers are declining at a genuinely alarming rate. The Elephant Thief, which is set in the future, is written by Jacob Rajan, who for the first time won't be performing in an Indian Ink production. There are many including Krishnan's Dairy, Kiss the Fish and The Guru of Chai which have toured New Zealand and overseas. The Elephant Thief premieres on the 5th of December at Hamilton's Meteor Theatre.

The Elephant Thief, poster

The Elephant Thief, poster Photo: supplied

1:10 At The Movies

1:35 Simon Kaan meditates on his Chinese-Maori heritage

Dunedin-based painter and printmaker Simon Kaan has blended his Maori and Chinese ancestry in meditative paintings and prints for about 15 years now. His palette tends to be muted, mainly gentle greys, whites and browns, with brighter tones used sparingly. The predominant motifs are vessels that could be waka or Chinese junks, as well as water, trees, hills and birds. Simon's been co-ordinating a group show in Dunedin for Ngai Tahu artists as well as working for an upcoming show in Napier at SPA_CE Gallery. He invites us into his large, light filled and slightly chaotic studio in an old industrial complex on the city's waterfront.

1:48 Remember when Hugo said "you go"…

The recent Anim-FX conference in Wellington was a simple statement of the obvious - the Capital's Weta Digital is one of the world leaders in digital animation and visual effects. Irene Gardiner from NZ On Screen reminds us of some hugely popular - if slightly smaller - examples of New Zealand animation over the years.

Jess Sayer, playwright

Jess Sayer, playwright Photo: supplied

2:06 The Laugh Track - Jess Sayer

Jess Sayer is an actor and a playwright - and more important, a proud citizen of a city better known for light entertainment than heavy drama - Rotorua. Jess makes it on the Laugh Track for two very good reasons. First, she's just won this year's Bruce Mason Playwriting Award at the Playmarket Accolades, and second, she's about to embrace her Roto-Vegas roots with a drama/talent-quest extravaganza called The Choice. It is still a work in progress and will play at the Blue Baths, Government Gardens in Rotorua from the 22nd of January 2016. Her picks include Victor Borge, Wanda Sykes, Louis CK, and Tim Minchin.



Dr Michael Brown

Dr Michael Brown Photo: supplied

2:25 Tall tales and true…

Did you hear the one about the heading dog who split in half? Or the Phantom Canoe? or the Legend of Tunnel Beach? They're all part of New Zealand's wild and woolly folklore - retold and illustrated in a new graphic novel. The anthology is a collaboration between old friends - writer Dr Michael Brown, and comics artist Mat Tait.They explain what started them off researching and retelling these old yarns.The Heading Dog Who Split In Half is published by Potton & Burton.

2:38 Daringly different

When artists have made a name for themselves creating a distinctive kind of art, over decades, is it brave or reckless to go off in an entirely different direction? Dunedin artist Jeffrey Harris is known for his big, brightly painted canvases. But his next exhibition Renaissance Days sees him sharing small, intimate works - some taken from old family photos and others with the faces of models taken from magazines. Renaissance Days opens on the 28th of November.

2:45 Personal stories emerge in Otago fashion collections

Personal stories provide a powerful starting point for Otago Polytechnic, Bachelor of Fashion Design students.  Fashion provides a means of communicating ideas that are invariably brought to life by the wearer. But behind any collection there must be a cohesive theme or story that feeds into the design process. Sonia Sly speaks to three talented third year students from Otago Polytechnic’s Fashion Design course.  

Grace Taylor

Grace Taylor Photo: supplied

3:06 The Drama Hour

My Own Darling. Grace Taylor is an advocate for young people using her ability as a spoken word poet to connect, teach, empower and inspire. She hails from South Auckland and is the co-founder of the Rising Voices Poetry Movement. Last year she was recipient of the Emerging Pacific Artist Award.The RNZ Drama Department recorded a live performance of Grace's debut play 'My Own Darling' at the Mangere Arts Centre South Auckland. The play was produced by Auckland Theatre Company. A warning, this is an adult-level play written for the stage and whilst the performers have adjusted some of the language for the audio version it still contains some robust language and adult themes. Listener discretion is advised.