PLAYMARKET is pleased to announce the ADAM NZ PLAY AWARD winner for 2022 is Maraea Rakuraku (Tūhoe, Ngāti Kahungunu ki Te Wairoa) for the play 02 04 16 10 07. Maraea also won the awards for Best Play by a Woman Playwright and Best Play by a Māori Writer. Maraea previously won the same awards at the Adam NZ Play Awards for her second play, Tan-Knee, in 2016. The Adam NZ Play Award recognises and celebrates the best in new unproduced writing for the theatre.

02 04 16 10 07 examines Tūhoe experiences of the 1916 occupation of Maungapōhatu by colonial forces charged with arresting Rua Kenana and the 2007 armed police raids in response to alleged paramilitary training in Rūātoki. Judges said “The content, like whakapapa, is multi-layered, and each carries with it powerful histories and memories, strength and complexities. The story is raranga at its finest, brings you in, draws you close, keeps you safe and lets you know this is exactly the right place to be – to listen to this whakaaro in this moment.” Judges also described the writing as ‘vibrant’ and ‘compelling’ and ‘deliciously funny’ despite the intense tragic events.

Maraea Rakuraku is a playwright, poet, short story writer and broadcaster. She won the Chapman Tripp Theatre Award for Outstanding New Playwright for her first full length play, The Prospect in 2012. In 2017, Te Papakāinga was awarded Best Play by a Māori Playwright at the Adam New Zealand Play Awards. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Canterbury and a Masters in Creative Writing from the International Institute of Modern Letters, Te Herenga Waka Victoria University of Wellington. Maraea’s dissatisfaction at the tropes of wāhine Māori appearing onstage and onscreen led to a Creative Writing Doctorate manawahine, mana wahine, mana wāhine, manawa hine: My Great Great Grandmother is a Māori Princess. Using her lived experience central to her life story has resulted in the creation of characters within wāhine Māori driven narratives who call-out, defy and break stereotype. In 2021, this work was recognised with a Victoria University Postgraduate Research Excellence Award.

Two plays were named as Runners-Up; Lonely Flotsam by Craig Thaine; and Hemo is Home by Tainui Tukiwaho (Te Arawa, Tūhoe) written with his children Te Rongopai, Jade, Paku, Le-Toya and Mia. Tainui was also a finalist for his play The Sun and the Wind.

The Dean Parker Adaptation or Non-Fiction Award was won by Eleanor Bishop and Karin McCracken for Aliens & Anorexia, adapted from the book of the same name by Chris Kraus, depicting her attempt to make the feature film Gravity and Grace in New Zealand in the ‘90s.

The McNaughton South Island Play Award (awarded to a South Island resident in memory of Howard McNaughton) was won by Emily Duncan for The Woman at the Store, an adaptation of Katherine Mansfield’s 1912 short story.

The Adam NZ Play Award, now in its fifteenth year, is the only one of its kind for new writing. Playmarket’s only entrance requirements are that the playwright be a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident and that the play has not yet had a professional production. The award is generously funded by the Adam Foundation. Playmarket is also very grateful for the support of our major funders Foundation North and Creative New Zealand.

ADAM AWARD WINNER 2022, Best Play by a Woman Playwright and Best Play by a Māori Playwright: Maraea Rakuraku for 02 04 16 10 07

Runners-Up: Craig Thaine for Lonely Flotsam and Tainui Tukiwaho with Te Rongopai, Jade, Paku, Le-Toya and Mia for Hemo is Home

Dean Parker Award: Eleanor Bishop and Karin McCracken for Aliens and Anorexia adapted from the book by Chris Kraus

McNaughton South Island Play Award: Emily Duncan for The Woman at the Store, adapted from the short story by Katherine Mansfield

Other Finalists:

Leaning Left, The Perfect Image and White Wedding by Sam Brooks

Blood Harmony by William Duignan

The Shit Kid by Sarah Harpur

Losing Face by Nathan Joe

How to Throw a Chinese Funeral by Jill Kwan

Cycles by Lori Leigh

The Grass is Singing by Stanley Makuwe adapted from the book by Doris Lessing

The Sun and the Wind by Tainui Tukiwaho