Aus-PNG Network Leadership Series: Storytelling and representation - Theatre in PNG
In this episode of the Aus-PNG Network Leadership Series, Mihai Sora speaks to Andrew Kuliniasi, award-winning playwright and Drama Director at the Moresby Arts Theatre, about how the dramatic arts engage with important social issues in Papua New Guinea.
Andrew tells Mihai about his own work, “Looking at the past informs the future…Meisoga as a play was about a sixteen-year-old girl that had to become the head of her clan, that had to become the matriarch. And I looked at that and I went, wow, this is a story that can inspire other women. And I remember having the lead actress at the time, who is mousy and shy, just become a lion on stage.”
“PNG is such a beautiful country,” says Andrew. “And it’s rich with so many stories and…social issues that happen, and the stories that come from that…may be hard and gritty and tough to swallow, or maybe even beautiful and amazing and triumphant. And I want to be able to show truth and build the industry here. If I’m not going to do it, who is? I can only be the change that I want.”
Andrew Kuliniasi is a playwright and Drama Director at the Moresby Arts Theatre, and Creative Director to PNG Fashion Week. Andrew’s works include Meisoga, He is Victor and his latest production, For My Father, premiering on September 1st.
Mihai Sora is the Project Director of the Australia-Papua New Guinea Network at the Lowy Institute. Mihai’s research focuses on Australian foreign policy in the Pacific, Australia-PNG relations, and geopolitics in the region. Mihai has more than a decade’s experience as an Australian diplomat with postings to Solomon Islands and Indonesia, and was a Pacific Analyst at the Office of National Assessments.