Flat City Field Notes is a blog about arts and culture in and around Ōtautahi Christchurch, with an emphasis on performance and live events. It’s not a clearinghouse for reviews of everything that’s being made and produced in the city – and there’s a lot! There are other sites that do that quite well, as well as online gig guides and events portals that will give you consumer advice or tell you if something is entertaining or not. Instead, this site offers observations from the ground: quick-fire reviews, responses, essays, and long-form criticism about things that we find interesting. This including events and topics that tend to fall outside of regular reviewing; not just performances, but festivals, seasons, competitions, programming, workshops, works in progress, talks, and anything else of note.
This site is edited by Erin Harrington. She has contributed reviews and cultural criticism to The Pantograph Punch, The Spinoff, The Press / stuff.co.nz, Bulletin, The Physics Room / HAMSTER, Theatreview, The Christchurch City Libraries, The Playmarket Annual, RNZ National, BBC5, TV3, rdu98.5, Plains FM, a bucket full of podcasts and a range of scholarly publications. She is a Senior Lecturer based in the English department at the University of Canterbury Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha, and appears regularly as a panelist, moderator, and keynote speaker at festivals and events.
Juanita Hepi – bio to come.
Ruth Oy Har Agnew is a writer and teacher of Chinese and Pākehā descent from Ōtautahi Christchurch. She has written for Theatreview, The Press, Stuff, What’s Up Christchurch, and the Playmarket Annual. She is an experienced actor, and currently works supporting young performers as a speech and drama teacher.
Brendon Bennetts is an improviser, teacher and writer whose shows for children have been performed around New Zealand and Australia. He has been performing improvised theatre with the Court Jesters since 2002, and he is the Dungeon Master for the popular Dungeons & Comedians live show.
Naomi van den Broek is a creative person living in Ōtautahi Christchurch. She works as a performing artist (under the name Naomi Ferguson), as well as in arts/educational management. Her specific artistic interests are the intersection of music and theatre, site specific or bespoke performance work, textile art, waste reduction/sustainable making, creative writing, craft and artisan making. She also likes to read, eat, cook, sew, ride her bike and talk.
Steph Walker is a creative producer and programmer with a penchant for festivals, contemporary performance and site-specific work across all artforms. Originally from Ōtautahi Christchurch, she has held roles at the Adelaide Festival and as General Manager & Assistant Director at the Christchurch Arts Festival. She holds her Masters in Arts Management with Distinction from the University of Greenwich (UK), and is currently Head of Programming at Auckland Arts Festival.
More contributors to come!