DIANA DOWN-UNDER Premiered at Nibelheim in the Arts Centre, August 2007 Production Credits
Diana Down Under explores the life that the dead princess still lives in our media and our minds. As Elizabeth Wilson writes, "To begin with she was simply the ingénue, the fairy princess, but she rapidly became mother, crazy neurotic, wife betrayed, self-obsessed narcissist, glamour star, woman-struggling-for-independence, survivor, and, latterly, saint, strong woman, and even political interventionist. This excess, amplified by the media, meant that she became a copy without an original, a multiple personality with no 'real' Diana to which her public could return."
When Diana visited New Zealand, she was led to attend the ballet Coppelia where a fairytale puppet becomes alive through desires and fantasies. Free Theatre's new production, directed by Peter Falkenberg, presents a puppet manufactory where the un-dead Diana is revived by the manipulations of different puppeteers for the entertainment of an audience.
Coinciding with the tenth anniversary of her death, the performance takes place "down under" in the Arts Centre performance space, Nibelheim (South Quad, Old Library, under the SoFA Gallery), 8pm Tuesday to Sunday, from 25th August through 8th September. Tickets are $15/$10 and are available from Te Puna Toi in the Arts Centre, phone 365 3159. Bookings recommended as places are limited.
A short film Diana Coppelia was made out of material from the production.