Wet Hot Beauties Swan Song

Billed as a fantastic 1930s and 40s-inspired water ballet with a cheeky modern twist - a classical love tragedy pool party with 80-odd tutu clad amateurs kicking up a storm for the Auckland Fringe Festival - the Wet Hot Beauties Swan Song was truly a rare thing to behold.

Photographing the event over a few nights and standing amongst the enchanted audience it was clear that this modern re-telling of Swan Lake surprised and delighted in equal measure. Balmy Auckland summer weather complemented all the performances (Saturday night enjoyed the serendipitous timing of the Auckland Lantern Festival mid-performance) and the audiences were good enough to cheer, jeer, hiss and applaud at the right times.

Technically, this was like shooting a rock concert - low ambient, quick lighting changes, a predominance of blue and pink gels (arrgghh), and lots of movement from the performers. But also real drama and moments of peak performance. You just don't see this kind of thing everyday.