Live comedy is back at The Court Theatre with the arrival of James Roque’s critically acclaimed show, Boy Mestizo.

The Court Theatre is pleased to present James Roque’s Boy Mestizo, in collaboration with SquareSums&Co for two performances on 14 and 15 August. 

Post Covid-19 lockdown, The Court Theatre has opened its doors and continues to bring exceptional and entertaining theatre to Canterbury. 

The Court Theatre, known for innovation, is staging this production in its New York loft style foyer space, complete with bars, shipping containers, woodfired pizza and exposed brick walls.  Transformed by The Court’s resident crew, the space is warm and inviting, drawing in theatregoers in a relaxed style. 

Boy Mestizo, a finalist for the Fred Award for Best Show in the 2019 NZ International Comedy Fest, explores colonisation, with Roque unpacking his hang-ups about being brown, inspired by his first visit to the Philippines as an adult.

Having performed Boy Mestizo to sell-out crowds across Melbourne, Sydney, Auckland and Bali, Roque wanted to bring back this hit show for a Christchurch tour post-lockdown.

A local favourite on the stand-up scene, Roque is a familiar face from Jono and Ben, Funny Girls and Only in Aotearoa. He’s also a panellist for hit shows 7 Days and Have You Been Paying Attention? NZ.

Light-hearted and hilariously honest, this no-holds-barred takedown of the long-term effects of colonisation offers a deft touch to an often-tough conversation.

“The story is about my first visit to the Philippines in 20 years. So, if you’re Filipino, expect to go ‘oh, I know what that is,’ and if you’re not, expect to learn something new! There’s power in seeing your story onstage and I want to give that to the Filipino community and wave our flag proudly,” Roque says.

“The word ‘mestizo’ means mixed race,” Roque explains. “In the Philippines, being mixed or lighter skinned is always what is considered more beautiful. Growing up, I never really questioned that. But now, as an adult, I’ve realised how messed up that actually is – and I reckon comedy is the best way to destroy that way of thinking.”

“We’re all going through a tough time at the moment with the pandemic, and I think it’s super important to still be able to have a laugh and a nice night out if you can. The cliché saying that ‘laughter is the best medicine’ exists for a reason – there’s definitely truth in that.” 

The Court’s Artistic Director Dan Pengelly says: “Our post-Covid world continues to throw us interesting challenges and opportunities for innovation, demanding we all change in our new normal. But what hasn’t changed is The Court reflecting and responding to the many faces of our community.  We are particularly pleased to present the conversation that questions what it means to be perceived as ‘different’, through the power of comedic storytelling.” 

Boy Mestizo runs at The Court Theatre for two nights only on 14 & 15 August. You can learn more & book tickets here.