16th Ave Productions Coming Up 

Taking Off

 written by Roger Hall and Directed by Geraldine Broderick 

This poignant, funny, sensitive play follows four Kiwi women who are given a new lease on life as they head off to the other side of the world.

Frankie, played by Maggie Grigsby, wins second division Lotto and decides to leave her boring husband. 

Ruth, played by Penny Guy,  has slogged hard for years bringing up a family and supporting her husband on their farm, and leaves him after she discovers he is having an affair.

Geraldine Broderick plays Jean, a loyal corporate employee who has been made redundant after 20 years service.

Noeline, played by Sarah Bate has nursed her terminally ill husband for years, and decides to take the trip they planned together.

Nell Gwynn – the play

·         The play premiered on 19 September 2015 at Shakespeare’s Globe, London

·         It had its West End premiere at the Apollo Theatre London,  on 12 February 2016

·         It won Best Comedy at the 2016 Olivier Awards

·         Prior to its success, it had been through a workshop process.

The play celebrates love and the triumph of personality over class. Charles, the King falls in love with Nell Gwynn, an orange seller outside Drury Lane Theatre in London after she becomes an actor and thrills local audiences.

As well and being only the second woman to become an actor on the London stage, Nell was one of the many mistresses of King Charles II and one of two who he continued to liaise with until his death.  She was the one who he was truly in love with.  A comment on his deathbed indicates this – ‘… please look after my Nell for me…’

The play tracks the story of their meeting and their continued relationship over the years and is a superb mix of drama and humour. It is very true to the actual events that took place in Restoration England, after Charles had been restored to the throne following the Cromwellian era of austerity.

The play is set in mid-1600’s and is being set in that era – costumes and set will reflect that era. 

 Critical responses to the play

this rowdy comedy… celebrated the artifice of theatre and makes some neat political jabs.”  Catherine Love, in a review of the London production at the Globe theatre


“Jessica Swale’s play about the orange-seller turned acator cannily mixes Cary On gags with an explicitly feminist message”  Michael Billington, in a review of the London production at the Apollo Theatre


“Some may be disappointed that here’s more playfulness that profundity: we see the Nell that captivated the public and put on a show, and only hear snippets of her impoverished upbringing and prostitution.  But there’s still substance to this comedy. Jessica Swale’s writing deftly draws out a woman who remains 400 years later. Truly remarkable.  And. In tis portrayal of Restoration Theatre, the new play celebrated traditional drama and the progress we have made since.”  Lucy Brooks, in a review of the London production re-run at the Glkobe Theatre


Nell Gwynn - Production Dates

Production dates are as follows:

Sunday 17 November

Double Sunday

Wednesday 20 November

Final Dress with FOH audience

Friday 22 November

7.30pmOpening Night

Saturday 23 November


Sunday 24 November

2.00pm Matinee

Tuesday 26 November – Saturday 30 November


Sunday 1 December

2.00pm Matinee

Tuesday 3 December – Friday 6 December


Saturday 7 December

Final Night

Sunday 8 December

Pack-Out – all cast members are expected to be available for pack-out




Nell Gwynn – the team

We have been able to assemble an excellent production team:

Director      Dennis Fenwick

Production Manager Delwyn Weatherley

Costume Design Alf Weston

Set Design Alf Weston

Choreography Laura Weatherley

Music TBC

Stage Manager Rob Weatherley

Lighting Design Sam Denize

Sound John Ten Velde

… supported by the excellent Front of House and backstage teams of 16th Avenue Theatre




If you would like more information about the production please make contact with us:


Dennis Fenwick                                        Delwyn Weatherley

Director                                                      Production Manager

Mobile – 027 314 1129                           027 274 7677

Email dennis@df-artistic.co.nz          Delwyn@backtoblack.co.nz