Development Season of a brand new Kiwi musical comes to Hannah Playhouse this November

Sunday 22 October 2023, 9:37AM

By Jo Marsh



River is on a collision course with her parents and their way of life.The world is burning. Is there any hope for the future?

House on Fire is a new modern musical that addresses the major issue of our age; Climate Change. 

Political, absurd and ridiculously relevant, this production explores this important issue through the view of the dysfunctional Reins’ Family.

Amongst the corruption and dysfunctionality, is a story of hope that promotes a world that can only survive when we make the right choices.    

This production will bring seasoned performers and creatives together to realise the work of an award winning composer and script writing team.

“Stirred by the difficulties of our climate, the creators of ‘House on Fire’ respond to a global and crooked kind of leadership igniting crazy events that should never occur.” Director Margaret-Mary Hollis says.  

“With an outstanding team of artists connected through a language of original live composition and song, spoken word and a sense of the absurd, we will dive into our development season creative process, with sensitivity and recklessness.” she continues,

“As artist residents of the Hannah Playhouse throughout November 2023, this unique, valuable, and terrifying opportunity is exceptional.  It provides us with space to explore into the unknown toward our shared, emotional, and instinctive imagination, through an enriched and robust process in conversation with a live audience. “  

The production will have 4 actors and 3 musicians with the lauded performer Jacqui Clarke playing one of the leads.     

The development season of this work’s main aim is to engage the audience in the creative process. Over the course of the season at the Hannah, audiences are encouraged to give feedback that will inform changes and amendments to the work and how it is staged. This feedback will be then workshopped and implemented throughout the season.

Throughout the season there will also be a series of free forums from specialists Hon James Shaw MP, Niwa Scientist Sam Dean and Artist Rob Apperdio before the performances, to further inform audiences of the themes and issues raised in the new work. These will be held on 15th, 22nd, and 24th November.

“It also offers opportunities for us to engage the audience in further insight into the effect of climate change across art, politics and science with a series of forums from specialists in each field.” Creative Producer Stephen Blackburn says, “The development process this work is undertaking is robust and innovative. The final phase requires the alchemy of the audience, a step so often missed in the development of new New Zealand work”    

This is a rare opportunity for audiences to be a part of the creative process of this new musical work. Tickets are available from

HOUSE ON FIRE - A Musical For Our Age     

Hannah Playhouse

November 10 -26 

Tues-Sat 7.30pm

Sun 4pm

Tickets from iTicket