Khandallah Arts Theatre Inc.

Coming up

Itís My Party (And Iíll Die If I Want To)
by Elizabeth Coleman
directed by Ewen Coleman
Dates: Nov 18 - 27

Our Mission and History

KAT logo

"To foster the study, practice, and enjoyment of the arts and in particular, dramatic art".

Khandallah Arts Theatre was begun in 1959 and the mission statement as above has remained the same ever since.

In the beginning, the club did not have a fixed venue for performances. Productions were usually held in the Khandallah Town Hall with sorties to Onslow College and, more importantly, to the newly built Memorial Theatre at Victoria University.

The ambitious nature of the productions at the Memorial Theatre, for example, 'The Life of Galileo' by Bertolt Brecht, followed by the departure of many of the early members,led to the virtual collapse of the club in 1967.  For the next three years a stalwart few held the club together.

The return of an active director, Zenocrate (Zennie) Graham, from overseas in 1970 boosted morale and the club grew again.

Productions of Shakespeare, (the first of which was 'Twelfth Night' with a set designed by Raymond Boyce based on the original Globe Theatre), the classics (e.g. 'The Rivals' by RB Sheridan) and modern comedies (e.g. 'Mothers and Fathers' by Joe Musaphia), drew audiences to the Khandallah Town Hall until 1983 when KAT moved to the Cashmere Avenue School Community Hall for all its activities.

There followed an intense period of theatrical endeavour for the next 18 years: regular plays for children were interspersed with seasons of one act plays, thrillers, comedies, and classics. At the same time a programme of club nights was maintained, involving members in play readings, workshops and evenings of poetry and other arts.

In September 2001 the Community Hall was condemned as unsafe and KAT was homeless for the next two years while a new community hall was built attached to Cashmere Avenue School. The theatre has a financial stake in this new Cochran Hall and has a lighting box and props storage room for its own use upstairs. Two containers outside the hall are used for additional storage and costumes are housed underneath the Khandallah Presbyterian Church in Ganges Road. Our first production in the new hall, in November 2003, was the classic 3 act comedy 'Hobson's Choice' by Harold Brighouse, set in 1880 Salford, England.

Currently Khandallah Arts Theatre produces two full-length plays each year, in July and October, and a play for children in February, staged in Khandallah Park. This last has been a feature of the annual calendar since 2000, with only one year (2003) missed. We hold club nights between productions on Fridays at 7:30pm and a monthly newsletter informs members of upcoming activities and, as a member of Theatre New Zealand, keeps them in touch with theatre in the Wellington District.