Oh yes, just like everyone else New Zealand has a talent too! And plenty of it in a distinctly quirky ‘kiwiana’ style, as seen last night.
Because where else would you have 63 years old man as a first act on the opening night? Billy Rimmer is a one-man-orchestra; ‘Billy’s Big Brass Band’ and it is not to be sniffed at! Billy was suitably attired in an army suit, carrying quite big drums on his back, cymbal on his head, and playing the trumpet to a theme from ‘Dad’s Army’ As a good NZ bloke, Billy readily admitted that he has never performed before and everyone loved him!
While some rather scary performances followed, everyone took judges’ decisions with a good humour and ‘sweet as’ attitude!
Seventeen-year-old Tawaroa Kawana, pulled out just about every stop to win over one of the judges; NZ own Rachel Hunter, by singing ‘Don’t Want To Talk About It’ by Rachel’s ex-husband, Rod Stewart. She almost cried! And before you even think about saying ‘oh how corny’; do not bother – audience stood up since we are in NZ and everyone loves Rachel – still our most famous export!
There was of course aging Elvis impersonator, belly dancers, local sword-swallower, and walking rainbow wane-be singer. All good fun.
The title of the funniest first-timer surely must go to Russell Gray dancing to Britney’s Spear’s ‘Toxic’. He even managed to get Rachel on stage to help him!
Dance troupe J-Geeks delivered a truly outstanding performance by incorporating Maori themes into a medley of pop songs.
When Dane Moeke appeared on stage in a t-shirt and bare feet, because, as he candidly explained, his jandals got a bit sweaty, we all felt a bit warm and fuzzy inside! Once it was clear why he was barefooted, Dane belted out Whitney Huston’s number splendidly.
Christchurch is the city I have lived for 10 years before my recent move to Wellington. Two years ago series of devastating earthquake shook the city, destroyed countless homes and took many lives. When Rachel asked whether she was affected by the earthquake, Olivia simply answered; ‘Yes, I lost my home’ and proceeded to sing … as you do at 91, and singing on national television’s talent quest!
That my dearests, is true New Zealand talent!