DRUA: The Wave of Fire epitomises true Pacific co-operation in the context of the building of one of the greatest ocean going canoes to ever sail the Pacific Ocean.
The production portrays a group of Fijian sailors who draw on the best aspects of canoe-making from various Pacific Island communities as they construct their own ocean-going drua.
The production’s executive producer and co-director Professor Vilisoni Hereniko said the characters were not only meant to entertain but to disseminate important facts about drua culture.
“The collaborative nature of island cultures in Micronesia, Melanesia and Polynesia in the creation and design of the sail that the drua used towards the end of the 19th century made it possible to be among the fastest ocean-going vessels of its time,” Professor Hereniko said.
The production debuted at the University of the South Pacific’s Japan-Pacific ICT Centre Multi-Purpose Lecture Theatre on Thursday night and was well received by a full house. Keeping in line with their past productions, the choreography from the dancers of the Oceania Centre for Arts, Culture and Pacific Studies was once again rapturously enjoyed by theatre goers.
The sopranos, altos, tenors and basses of the Pasifika Voices Ensemble sang wonderfully overall and were able to up the emotional, aggressive, and cultural ante the various scenes demanded.
Professor Hereniko said questionnaires were handed out theatre goers at the production’s end and constructive comments, suggestions and criticisms were taken into account.
“Doing a show like this it’s very difficult because it’s a combination of three different art forms.
“I felt the show went very well for its first night. I think the crowd was very enthusiastic,” Professor Hereniko said.
“We made a few adjustments to tonight’s show based on the answers we got from the questionnaires.
“ Based on last night’s performance and the crowd’s reaction I’m looking forward to our trip to the Solomon Islands,” he added.