This searing new work is both an unflinching social commentary and a compelling urban thriller which will take audiences on a surprising journey towards hope and redemption.

Download the programme for Bless the Child here

For nine days a storm builds over the city in which eight lives and three worlds are colliding. A baby has died and the mother is assumed guilty. But who really did it?

A hotshot lawyer is dragged into the case to defend the demonised mother. As the whānau closes ranks, the question of who killed the baby and whose prejudice is exposed, is brought provocatively to the surface.

A giant of New Zealand theatre, Hone Kouka (Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Kahungunu) is behind such award-winning plays as Ngā Tangata Toa, Waiora: Te-ū-kai-pō (The Homeland), Tu and I, George Nepia. He credits his mother for challenging him to write his latest, Bless the Child; to begin a korero around the responsibility of whānau and people to protect all children.

 Directed by Mīria George and presented by leading Māori and Cook Islands theatre company Tawata Productions, this passionately realised play, told through an eloquent Māori lens, confronts the hard truths of our shared humanity. This is an urgent and thought-provoking work of theatre. 

Contains nudity, strong language and violence.

Years 11-13: Drama, Māori Studies, English, Social Sciences

Schools Matinee: Monday March 12 at 10.30 am
Schools tickets $15
Venue: Q Theatre, Rangatira

New Zealand Festival Schools Resource

RNZ interview with Hone Kouka 

Māori TV 


Director: Mīria George
Set Design: Mark McEntyre
Costume Design: Cara Louise
Lighting: Natasha James
Sound Design: Chris Ward

Co-produced by

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With support from
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New writing is [Tawata Productions'] 'life-blood' and writers their 'soul, conscience and heart'. They honour the fundamental purpose of theatre in any healthy society.