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12:15 Kiwi Aliens conquer I-Tunes and YouTube

It's the biggest hit New Zealand movie you've probably not heard of unless you've been looking in the right direction. 

It's called Alien Addiction and it's Number One on the New Zealand I-Tunes chart, also the YouTube movies chart - not just here but in Australia too.  

Is writer-director Shae Stirling the new Peter Jackson?  

And what does it actually mean being Number One on the Itunes and Youtube charts these days?  Alien Addiction also went to Number Six in the States.

It's been an official selection at the Sci-Fi London Festival, official selections and opening night features at both the Other Worlds Austin Festival in Texas and the Boston Sci-Fi Film Festival.

It's also won several awards, including Best Picture at the Florence Film Awards, Best Picture at the Gelos Film Festival and Best First-Time Director at the Kosice Film Festival.  

Clearly the market for full-on, gross-out, sci-fi comedy is voracious - and writer-director-editor-cameraman Shae Stirling is ready to fill it.  Simon Morris talks to music video king Shae about aliens and working with rock stars.



12:30 Sculptor Paul Dibble's unique works

Human-sized golden kowhai flowers, the extinct huia brought back to life and soldiers marching to war in Featherston...

The last ten years of back-breaking work creating large-scale, public artworks is documented in a new book about one of our best known sculptors, Paul Dibble.

A Decade of Sculpture 2010-2020, published by Bateman, is the third book Paul's wife Fran has written about his art, and the thought and physical processes that go into making it.

Lynn Freeman spoke to Paul Dibble at his studio in Palmerston North, where he says he's currently trying things out with a new work in progress.


12:45  Art and redemption in Bay of Islands prison

A performing arts programme for prisoners in the Bay of Islands is being held up as an example for other prisons to follow.

Redemption Performing Arts Whānau and Redemption Arts Tuakana Teina Mentors has just won an Arts Access Accolade for its collaborative approach to the arts programme, and also for the positive impact it's having on those inmates who sign up for it.

Lynn Freeman talks with Beth Hill, Programme Leader of Redemption Arts & Education Services, and also to "Marvel", one of the prisoners, who says their life is on a different direction thanks to what they've learned from the programme.

Beth says the Redemption programme emerged in 2017 from one called Shakespeare Behind Bars.


1:10 At The Movies

This week Simon Morris reviews The Trial of the Chicago 7, Palestinian comedy It Must Be Heaven and On the rocks.


1:31  Harriet Walter as one of Alan Bennett's Talking Heads

Harriet Walter

Harriet Walter Photo: supplied

There is no stiffer upper lip in Britain than that of Muriel, the stoic wealthy widow whose son takes advantage of her naivety in one of Alan Bennett's famous Talking Heads monologues, "Soldiering On".

She's played by English actress Harriet Walter in a recently filmed series that offer a new generation of actors a chance to perform the heartbreaking monologues, more than 30 years after the original series was broadcast on BBC One.

The new cast have not only had to stamp their own mark on the roles, but also film during Covid-19 lockdown.  For Harriet this meant Zoom rehearsals with the director before filming started with all the necessary social distancing.

Harriet Walter's more a very familiar face, rather than a household name.  Among her hundreds of TV roles, she played Clementine Churchill in The Crown, and Dasha the assassin trainer in Killing Eve.  She's also been in many Shakespearean productions for the stage, including several with all-female casts.

Lynn Freeman called Harriet during a break in filming a major feature in Britain.

The 2020 series of Talking Heads by Alan Bennett is screening on Sky's Arts Channel.  You can watch the Shakespearian productions that are now briefly available on line here... 

1:50 Lomina-Meteri Araitia is out of lockdown

Lomina-Meteri Araitia

Lomina-Meteri Araitia Photo: supplied

Enforced lockdown for a dancer is especially hard, but for Aucklander Lomina-Meteri Araitia it gave her time to breathe, but also to grieve.

Right now though she's about to show a new work created as part of the 11th Pacific Dance Choreographic Lab, drawing on her Cook Island and Tahitian heritage as a dancer and choreographer.  It's part of Auckland Art Week.

The call went out for applications in July, despite the uncertainty around the pandemic and live performance.  So the move to level 1 has come at just the right time for Lomina.

She's one of four mid-career choreographers selected for the Lab, that pairs them up with mentors to work on a risk-taking new dance.

Life's been full on for the young mother since graduating from PIPA -  the Pacific Insititute of Performing Arts in Auckland.

Lynn Freeman talks to her about the emotional roller-coaster of her level 4 experience:

Her new work - and that of three other choreographers involved in the 2020 Pacific Dance Choreographic Lab - will be performed on Thursday Oct 15 at the Auckland Art Gallery.

2:06 The Laugh Track - Emma Wollum

Emma Wollum

Emma Wollum Photo: supplied

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Photo: supplied

On the Laugh Track over the years we've run the gamut of funny-haha, funny-peculiar and funny-what are they thinking of?  Today's guest may very well cover all of the above.

The multi-talented Emma Wollum has ben inspired by the classic TV series Star Trek.  And among that show's many gifts to the world was the language of Klingon.  Yes, it's a real thing, and many people speak it fluently apparently.  But do they sing it?

Emma is about to launch Klingalong: The Constructed Language Singalong at the Whangarei Fringe Festival, and she sings a few of the hits of the show for Lynn Freeman.  In addition she sings in Dothraki, from Game of Thrones, and Quenya the Elvish tongue in Lord of the Rings.   

And this week you can hear the whole thing in a rare episode of the Laugh Track we're allowed to put up online.


2:25 Southland Writers and Readers Festival

Southland's writers and readers are finally getting their own Festival thanks to a group of booklovers who believe it's past time the region celebrated its rich literary heritage.

Local writers are keen as mustard, and the organisers don't want ticket prices to put off potential guests who've had a tough time of it during the pandemic.  So the author talks, workshops and book-themed quiz night are all free.

Storm Reece is one of the organisers and a trustee of the Dan Davin Literary Foundation, named after one of Southland's best loved writers.

She confirms to Lynn Freeman that it is Southland's first official Writers and Readers Festival.

The Southland Writers & Readers Festival starts on Thursday, October 15 at the Miharo venue in Invercargill.



2:40  Nikki Crutchley's small-town thriller 

Nikki Crutchley

Nikki Crutchley Photo: supplied

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Photo: supplied by publisher

A serial killer determined to go down in history terrorises the small New Zealand town of Lentford in Nikki Crutchley's latest crime novel The Murder Club.

The murderer taunts investigative journalist Miller Hatcher, who's recently moved to the town after a harrowing time at her previous newspaper over her coverage of a story.

Miller is also caught up in a cold case involving the obsessed daughter of a murdered woman.

It's the journalist's second outing after her first appearance in Nikki's novel Nothing Bad Happens Here.

Nikki is a professional proof-reader as well as a writer and Lynn Freeman chats to her at her home in Cambridge.

The Murder Club is published by Oak House Press. 

Nikki Crutchley is appearing at the new look Escape! festival in Tauranga, a slimmed down version after its cancellation in June that now takes place on Oct 17-18.


2:49 Footnote Dance Company take - finally - to the road

After several false starts and other disruptions thanks to the pandemic, Wellington's Footnote NZ Dance company is about to hit the road to celebrate its 35th birthday.

The icing on the cake for the company that was founded by Diedre Tarrant is a move to new premises, leaving Bohemian Cuba Street for the leafy surburb of Karori.

Footnote's General Manager Richard Aindow joins Lynn Freeman to talk about the new digs and the new tour.

That tour, Undercurrent, previews in Upper Hutt on the 21st of October before heading out around the country. 


3:06 Drama at 3 - The Foul Weather Friend by Fraser Robinson

Today's Classic Drama is a bright and breezy comedy about two young men having a bad day. They have flatmate and boyfriend problems, then Ed loses his job and to make matters worse the landlord decides to evict them.

Ever resourceful the dynamic pair set about solving their problems by getting a new job and organizing a community fair.  The Foul Weather Friend by Fraser Robinson stars Barnaby Frederick, Rafael Laverde, Simon Leary, Sophie Hambleton, Nick Dunbar, Jessica Robinson, Jennifer Martin, Emma Kinane, Brian Sergent, Jack Sergent, Chris Brougham and Sarah Boddy.

It was engineered by Phil Benge and produced by Duncan Smith for RNZ National.

Music played in this show

Artist: Justin Hayward
Song:  The eve of the war
Composer: Wayne
Album: War of the Worlds
Label: Columbia
Played at: 12.16

Artist: Sheb Woolley
Song:  Purple People Eater
Composer:  Wooley
Album: Halloween Hits
Label: Rhino
Played at: 12.27

Artist: The Byrds
Song: Mr Spaceman
Composer: McGuinn
Album: Greatest Hits
Label: CBS
Played at: 12.41

Artist: Luscious Jackson
Song: Alien Lover
Composer: Cunniff
Album: Electric Honey
Label: Capitol
Played at: 12.58

Artist:  B-52's
Song: Planet Claire
Composer:  Schneider-Strickland
Album:  Planet Claire
Label: Spectrum
Played at:  1.07

Artist: Van Halen
Song: Outta Space
Composer: Van Halen
Album: A different kind of truth 
Label: Interscope
Played at: 1.45

Artist: Radiohead
Song: Subterranean Homesick Alien
Composer: Radiohead
Album: OK Computer
Label: Parlophone
Played at:  1.58

Artist: The Firm
Song:  Star Trekkin'
Composer: Lister-Kehoe
Album: Dr Demento: Hits from Outer Space
Label: Laugh
Played at:  2.05

Artist:  Public Service Broadcasting 
Song: Go!
Composer:  Willgoose 
Album: The Race for Space
Label:  Testcard
Played at:  2.32

Artist: The Carpenters
Song: Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft
Composer: Draper-Woloschuk
Album:  Greatest Hits
Label: A&M
Played at: 2.58

Artist: Ella Fitzgerald
Song: Two little men in a flying saucer
Composer: Pitt-Wise
Album: Greatest hits from outer space
Label:  Ace
Played at:  3.05

Artist: David Bowie
Song: Loving the alien
Composer: Bowie
Album: Tonight
Label: Virgin
Played at: 3.58