The play “On the Conditions and Possibilities of Helen Clark Taking Me as Her Young Lover” has returned to Downstage, as people may see from the advertisement on the right.
When I first heard about this play, I thought I would rather play lawn bowls than go see it. But then just as the season in Wellington was ending, I started to hear good things about it. Then I read Che Tibby’s review and rang up to try and get tickets on the final night. They were all sold out. Che said:
The play is extremely well-written, extremely well-acted, and contains more gems, illuminations, satire and outright slap-your-knees-you’re-laughing-so-hard moments that you’ll feel rewarded just for turning up. Unless you work in Parliament, in which case you’ll want to perhaps wear a disguise, so as not to be seen laughing at what is a very heavy satire of the Labour Party and incumbent government.
The political jokes run thick and fast in this lecture, along with a number of outright lewd references to many people who are not Helen Clark (they don’t actually cross that line). There are even some fantastically arcane political science jokes in there, which only me and the two people sitting next to me (whom I did not know!) got.
So, there’s something in there for everyone. It’s extremely not-PC, it’s fast moving, and it’s actually funny.
I was pissed off I missed seeing it. But then it opened in Auckland. So I extended one of my trips to Auckland to stay on for it. And it was fucking hilarious. Don’t be mistaken by the title into thinking you will not enjoy this is you are right of centre. There were National MPs in the audience laughing as hard as anyone.
The star is commanding as he takes the audience through his powerpoint presentation on why Helen Clark should take him as her young lover. He comes across as so earnest and sincere (the scary thing is he may be just that) about the proposition that it is just hilarious. I liked the play so much I got a copy of the book and got him to autograph it.
Downstage have asked me to include this letter from Richard Meros below, which I’m delighted to do so. If I have the time I’m going to go again, and I really do recommend it to anyone who has a robust sense of humour. You will not stop laughing. Remember it is on this week only until 20 Septmber 2008.
Kia Ora Tatou, I’m Richard Meros and I have a Dream.
Our proud nation has laboured too long under a barely discernible pendulum wobble from Labour to National, National to Labour, so on ad nauseum. Yet we yearn for, and deserve, something greater. Through meticulous research I have drawn an inescapable conclusion: that only my personal engagement with the electoral process – and with our noble Prime Minister – can herald the glorious future of our South Pacific Utopia.
My acclaimed pamphlet of romantic political philosophy, On the Conditions and Possibilities of Helen Clark Taking Me as Her Young Lover, provoked howls of acclaim when published in 2007, and I have committed to share the “powerpoint” version of my book the length and breadth of New Zealand before Election Night 2008. Why? Because I care.
This life-changing lecture has toured across Aotearoa; enlightenment comes now to Wellington.
I encourage you, your friends, hapu, colleagues, book-groups, iwi and families to attend my presentation at Wellington’s Downstage Theatre (from 12-20 September) where my vision for a New New Zealand under a New Helen Clark, Warrior Princess, will be presented using the latest exciting digital communication technologies.
The engagement is strictly limited to 10 lectures only, and to encourage your passionate participation in the democratic process I am offering a complimentary bottle of Montana Brut Cuvée, (whimsically liberated from a recent National Party Conference) to every party of six or more who books.
Every vote counts.
As an added bonus, I will be launching my newest book, “Beggars and Choosers: The Complete Written Correspondence Between Richard Meros and Creative New Zealand Volume One” after the first lecture on Friday night.
Book online now at www.downstage.co.nz (or telephone 801 6946). Our operators are standing by.