Three of New Zealand’s most esteemed actors take to the Basement stage from November 27 to tackle the moving and unlikely love story between a Russian mail order bride and kiwi farmer, in Vanessa Rhodes' full length play Where Are You My Only One?
“This is a charming and memorable production from a young writer with vast promise” - Capital Times 2010
Yulia is a secretary from the heart of Moscow, with a mother who would try the patience of a saint. Bob is a lonely Waikato farmer whose wife has left him for another bloke. When Yulia joins a Russian 'Mail Order Bride' agency these two courageous souls meet. An unconventional love story, Where Are You My Only One? explores love between strangers, the courage to love again despite past failings and the endless pursuit of happiness.
Originally written by Rhodes as a short one act play Where Are You My Only One was expanded into a fuller version in 2010."I was inspired by a number of things" says Rhodes. "There was a lot in the media about so called 'mail order brides' and I was intrigued to find out what lay behind these often negative stereotypes. I did a lot of research, interviewed a number of people who had left Russia for a variety of reasons following the collapse of the Soviet Union, and a few 'Kiwi blokes', and dairy farmers, and I began to imagine two unlikely souls 'finding' each other and their two worlds colliding."
This Auckland production boasts some heavy hitting theatrical talent which is testament to the skill of this young playwright and her first full length work. Veteran NZ actress Elizabeth Hawthorne – well known for her numerous leading roles in theatre and on screen (The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, Outrageous Fortune to name but a few) plays the role of Yulia’s mother Ludmila who is determined to keep her daughter in Russia.
Elena Stejko takes on the pivotal role of the Russian Bride. She is most recently remembered for her leading role in the award-winning Kiwi film ‘Russian Snark’ and has also had vast experience in theatre working for many companies including Auckland Theatre Company. The ensemble is completed by David Aston as the Kiwi farmer Bob. David is an Auckland Theatre Company regular and has a wealth of experience in film and television.
Established actor Cameron Rhodes again flexes his directorial muscle wrangling this exceptional cast in a play written by his sister Vanessa Rhodes. Cameron promises a uniquely intimate theatre experience that will have audiences placed firmly in the characters living rooms for a bittersweet romantic comedy that is uniquely New Zealand.
" While Vanessa Rhodes' Where Are You, My Only One? deals with two people searching for love it does so imaginatively and with the lightest of touches; the laughter is tinged with a sense of heartbreak" - Dominion Post, 2010