Michael Hurst Now.com

This website was created to showcase the post-Hercules career of New Zealand actor and director, Michael Hurst.  We will also announce the professional activities of Michael's wife, Jennifer Ward-Lealand . . . More


HOMEPAGE / CURRENT PROJECTS INDEX

* ASH vs. EVIL DEAD
* BROKENWOOD MYSTERIES

* FROM BROADWAY TO LA SCALA
* LYSISTRATA
* OZ COMIC-CON
* RE-THINK
* SHAKESPEARE SONNET 18
* STEP DAVE
* TATAU
* TERRY TEO


Look beyond the homepage--use the links below to explore Michael's career:

ALPHABETICAL INDEX       RECENT PROJECTS         FUTURE PROJECTS

MICHAEL ON TV IN THE 80'S: NEW ZEALAND ONSCREEN

RADIO INTERVIEWS            WHAT'S AVAILABLE ON DVD

 


Photo: Tracey Stevens


  

WHAT'S NEW ON THE SITE?


Jennifer and Michael are the Patrons of Q Theatre;
seen here at One Night with Q, 7 June 2012.


Follow MichaelHurstNow on Twitter


WHAT'S NEW ON THE SITE

28 July  Added Jennifer reciting Shakespeare sonnet in Maori to homepage

26 July  Added Re-Think to homepage

25 July  Added reviews of The Brokenwood Mysteries dvd set to homepage

24 July  Added date change for From Broadway to La Scala in Auckland to homepage

23 July  Added Lysistrata rehearsal pic and Tyran Park directing From Broadway to La Scala to homepage

19 July  Added From Broadway to La Scala to homepage

16 July  Added new description and Michael's comments on Lysistrata to homepage

11 July  Added video of Ash vs. Evil Dead panel at Comic-Con to homepage

10 July  Added Ash vs. Evil Dead trailer and premiere date to homepage

6 July  Added link to watch Tatau in NZ on Neon to homepage

2 July  Added new Ash vs. Evil Dead image to homepage

1 July  Added Michael's interview at Oz Comic-Con to homepage

28 June  Added Lysistrata cast and creatives, Stuff review of Find Me a Maori Bride to homepage

24 June  Added links to video of Hercules panels at Oz Comic Con to homepage

16 June  Added Ash vs. Evil Dead to stream in Australia to homepage

12 June  Added Ash vs. Evil Dead panel at Comic Con to homepage

5 June  Added Lysistrata to homepage

4 June  Added Yahoo NZ review of Find Me a Maori Bride to homepage

1 June  Added dvd info for Tatau to homepage

24 May  Added Michael's episode numbers and Mimi Rogers to cast for Ash vs. Evil Dead on homepage

22 May  Added NZ Herald preview article and link to the first episode of Find Me a Maori Bride to homepage

20 May  Added where to watch Tatau in the US, where to watch Michael's Brokenwood Mysteries episode in the US to homepage

2 May  Added Find Me a Maori Bride to homepage

21 April  Added Brokenwood Mysteries award to homepage

11 April  Added Ash vs. Evil Dead to homepage

27 March  Created The Lady Killers page

8 March  Added Step Dave to homepage

24 January  Created Our Big Blue Backyard page and Undercover Rescue page

18 December  Added announcement of season two of The Brokenwood Mysteries

12 December  Added dvd release of The Brokenwood Mysteries to homepage

24 November  Created Decision 2014 page

16 November  Added video of behind-the-scenes of Tatau to homepage

9 November  Added Michael guest starring in Terry Teo to homepage

29 October  Added Jennifer in Terry Teo to homepage

22 October  Created Generation of Z/Zombie: Red Zone page

17 October  Added the plot outline of Tatau to homepage

2 October  Created Trees Beneath the Lake page

28 September  Added the cast of Tatau to homepage

14 September  Added Tatau to homepage

11 August  Created An Unseasaonable Fall of Snow page

10 September  Created Spartacus Overview page, summarizing Michael's contributions to Starz' Spartacus series (with links to individual episode pages)

 

 

 



CLICK HERE FOR COMPLETE, DETAILED SITE HISTORY


This is not an official site, but we will keep it current with news of Michael's professional activities, as well as an archive of his projects.  We will also announce the professional activities of Michael's wife, Jennifer Ward-Lealand; see her official site for more on her career.

See also:  Michael's curriculum vitae on his official website: www.michaelhurst.co.nz and his listing on IMDB.  Michael is represented by Johnson & Laird Management.

 

MICHAEL DIRECTING, JENNIFER STARRING IN LYSISTRATA 

Michael is adapting and directing Aristophanes' Lysistrata for Auckland Theatre Company, at Q Theatre from 30 July 2015.  It will star Jennifer, Amanda Billing, Sia Trokenheim, Darien Takle, Hannah Tasker-Poland, Cameron Rhodes, Fasitua Amosa, Andrew Grainger, Paul Glover, Peter Hayden, Lucinda Hare and Nomi Cohen, with design by Rachel Walker, choreography by Shona McCullagh, music by John Gibson, and costumes by Troy Garton. 

Click here for info and to book.

It's the women who call the shots in this hilarious comedy classic about one woman's extraordinary mission to end a war.  Leading the charge in the show that's been described as Sex in the City 411 B.C. is New Zealand's fab four of musical theatre – Amanda Billing (Chicago, Stortland Street), Jennifer Ward-Lealand (Rupert, The Heretic), Sia Trokenheum (Step Dave, Stepping Out), and Hannah Tasker-Poland (Chicago).

"Comedy for the Greeks was immediate.  It drew on comtemporary issues, sent up popular figures and satirised local institutions and events.  In this way, Lysistrata feels surprisingly modern.  There will always be a funny side to sex and politics, and though the specific issue of the Peloponnesian War and its ruinous effect on the city state of Athens is at the centre of the play, in a wider sense the song remains the same.  It's really funny, it's moving and it's gloriously human".  – Michael Hurst

ATC has added 49 rehearsal photos to their Facebook page; check them out here.


JENNIFER TO SING IN FROM BROADWAY TO LA SCALA

Jennifer will sing with Teddy Tau Rhodes, David Hobson, and Greta Bradman in the New Zealand tour of From Broadway to La Scala, with a special guest appearance by Dame Malvina Major and direction by Tyran Parke.  It will be performed in Auckland on 18 September 2015 (note change of date) in the Great Hall of Auckland Town Hall (click here to book) and in Christchurch on 20 September at the Isaac Theatre Royal (click here to book).  See the show's Facebook page.

From the press release:  "From Puccini to Rodgers and Hammerstein, Bizet to Gershwin, and Verdi to Cole Porter, this unique concert experience will feature many of the greatest songs, arias, and duets of the past two centuries, performed by these highly acclaimed contemporary singers and featuring the country's finest orchestras".


OZ COMIC-CON VIDEOS

Michael was a celebrity guest at Oz Comic-Con in Perth and Adelaide in April 2015.  He and Kevin Sorbo did a Hercules panel at each con.

Videos of the panels are now available for download at AU$5.00 each.  Click here for Perth; click here for Adelaide.

 

Michael also did an interview while he was in Adelaide; watch it below (starting at 18:00 minutes).

 


JENNIFER ON RE-THINK

Jennifer will be on the panel on Re-Think, 30 August 2015, 9:30 a.m. on TV3, talking about the health of theatre in New Zealand.

She was previously on the show on 26 July 2015 talking about her viewpoint and experiences as a Paheka speaker of Te Reo Maori.  Click here to watch it online.


JENNIFER AND GEORGE HENARE RECITE SHAKESPEARE SONNET IN ENGLISH AND MAORI

For Te Wiki o Te Reo (Maori Language Week), Jennifer and George Henare recited Shakespeare Sonnet 18 in English and Te Reo Maori for Mana Magazine.  Directed by Benjamin Brooking, produced by Simon Day; with special thanks to Q Theatre.


MICHAEL DIRECTED ASH VS. EVIL DEAD

Michael directed episodes 6 and 7 of new tv series Ash vs. Evil Dead in June 2015.  It will premiere on STARZ! on Halloween.

The show is executive produced by Sam Raimi, Rob Tapert, Bruce Campbell, and showrunner Craig DiGregorio, and stars Bruce Campbell, Lucy Lawless, Mimi Rogers, Jill Marie Jones, Ray Santiago, and Dana DeLorenzo.  Australian streaming service Stan has announced that it has exclusive rights to the show in Australia, and that it will air on the same day that it is shown on STARZ!; click here for info.

This 10-episode first season is the long-awaited follow-up to the classic horror film franchise The Evil Dead.  Bruce Campbell is reprising his role as Ash, the stock boy, aging lothario, and chainsaw-handed monster hunter who has spent the last 30 years avoiding reponsibility, maturity, and the terrors of the Evil Dead.  When a Deadite plague threatens to destroy all of mankind, Ash is finally forced to face his demons – personal and literal.  Destiny, it turns out, has no plans to release the unlikely hero from its "Evil" grip.  Click here for more.

There was an Ash vs. Evil Dead panel at San Diego Comic-Con on 10 July 2015; watch it below:

 


TATAU COMES TO NEW ZEALAND

Michael directed episodes 6 and 7 of 8-episode fantasy drama series Tatau, produced by Touchpaper TV and South Pacific Pictures for BBC Three (UK) and BBC America (USA). 

The series has finished its run in the UK (where it is now available on dvd), and is available on demand in the US on demand through many cable companies and digital platforms (such as Amazon and iTunes).  Click here to find out where you can watch it.

In New Zealand, it is available on Neon.

Tatau was written by Richard Zajdlic and stars Joe Layton and Theo Barklem-Biggs, with Barry Atsma, Shushila Takao, Cian Elyse White, Tai Berdinner-Blades, Temuera Morrison, Alex Tarrant, Rawiri Jobe, Kirk Torrance and Rangimoana Taylor.  It was filmed September-December 2014, in The Cook Islands and New Zealand.  Michael filmed his episodes in October/November 2014.

Tagata Pasifika did a behind-the-scenes story on the filming of Tatau on The Cook Islands, including scenes of Michael directing; watch it below.

From the show's Facebook page:

"Kyle is unsettled when local people react to his tattoo: it clearly has a significance that he is entirely unaware of.   It’s like he’s been marked out for something – but what?

"Later, while snorkelling in a lagoon, Kyle finds the body of a local girl, Aumea, tied up underwater – dead.  Returning to the lagoon with the police, Kyle finds her corpse has disappeared.  Budgie wonders if his best friend is going mad – he’s imagining things. But Kyle knows what he saw.  And he’s also beginning to realise that he has a gift – or a curse: the murder he’s witnessed isn’t something that has happened, it’s something that will happen in the future.

"Kyle and Budgie find themselves sucked into a desperate race to prevent Aumea’s murder, as Kyle learns that his gifts don’t stop at prophecy… and the full meaning of his tattoo is revealed".


JENNIFER AND MICHAEL GUEST STAR IN TERRY TEO

Jennifer plays Barbara Bertinelli in the third episode of Terry Teo, a revival of the classic Kiwi TV show, filmed early November 2014.  Michael plays Cornelius Jones in one episode, filmed mid-December.  The show will air on TV2.

Click here for info.


MICHAEL DIRECTED STEP DAVE

Michael directed the final 2 episodes (12 and 13) of the second season of Kiwi tv series Step Dave in April/May 2015.  The TVNZ show stars Sia Trokenheim, Jono Kenyon, Rawiri Jobe, Tanya Nolan, Aidee Walker, William Wallace, Tainui Tukiwaho, Lisa Harrow, Maya Wyatt, Lily Powell, and George Beca.  Click here for info.


THE BROKENWOOD MYSTERIES AVAILABLE IN THE US ON ACORN TV

Michael directed the third (of four) episodes, 'Playing the Lie', which aired in New Zealand on Prime in October 2014.  The show is now available in the US on AcornTV.  Click here for info/access.  It is also available on dvd/Blu-ray in NZ/AUS and USA/Canada, and is airing in France on France 3.

The show stars Neill Rea and Fern Sutherland, with Pana Hema Taylor, Nic Sampson, Christina Ionda, Colin Moy, Andi Crown, and Miriama McDowell.  It won the Bronze World Medal in the Television Drama category at the New York Festivals International Television and Film Awards.  A second season finished filming in July 2015; Michael did fight choreography for one episode.

REVIEWS;

Hi Def Standard:  "Brokenwood is a rich and bizarre place to set a modern detective drama, and if this release is an indication of things to come, we're going to get more enthralling tales in the coming months.  Bring it on".

Blog Critics:  "Each episode is a well crafted and finally spun story ... it seduces you with its quiet nature and before you notice you’ll be caught up in an episode and find yourself wanting more".


 

 

 

 Recent Projects    Future Projects
 
Note: We try to ensure that everything here is correct, but mistakes do happen,
and things can change, so please contact the venues directly for verification.

This site is non-commercial and no money is being made from it. No copyright infringement
is intended. All copyrighted materials remain the property of the original copyright holder.
We believe that everything on this web site falls within the legal description of "fair use".
The site has no formal affiliation with Michael Hurst.

For site update history, click here (latest update 28 July 2015).

email: