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Showing posts from December, 2012

Sundancing

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This week I read Ava DuVernay’s script for Middle of Nowhere, the feature for which she won Best Director in the US Competition at the Sundance Film Festival last year. Middle of Nowhere hasn’t reached New Zealand yet, but the elegant, powerful script touched my heart. It has an intriguing woman protagonist, a diverse group of women characters and can be read – like Sally Potter’s The Gold Diggers – as an extended metaphor for significant elements in women’s filmmaking.

It’s great to see Middle of Nowhere mentioned often as a contender for various categories at the Oscars. And now that Sundance has announced its 2013 US Dramatic Competition selection, and women directed eight of the sixteen films chosen – the highest ratio ever – it’s possible to imagine that next year they too will do well in awards.

The Sundance announcement hit the headlines and delighted many women. Change at last. But the reality is that the change is limited to the US Dramatic Competition. The women-directed p…

Kathleen Gallagher – Poet, Playwright, Filmmaker

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Two things affected me last month. First, the proposal to increase irrigation in Canterbury, a New Zealand region with many major rivers which are depleted and degraded, probably best known outside New Zealand as the site of major earthquakes in 2010 and 2011. Second, Sandy-the-Frankenstorm that devastated Haiti – where there was also a major earthquake in 2010 – Jamaica and Cuba before it hit the United States. I felt deep sadness first, then a desire to help, so offered support where I could. And I thought it might also help to protest about the Canterbury irrigation, and about climate change, but wasn’t sure what was best to do. So I focused on what I had to do: an essay about New Zealand women directors, the garden.

The next draft of Throat of These Hours, my play about poet and activist Muriel Rukeyser (1913-1980, ‘beautiful Muriel, mother of everyone’ according to fellow poet Anne Sexton ) and two women in a Wellington radio station, was waaay at the back of my mind – it’s ten…