New Zealand Opera checks in to a hotel room for The Human Voice

Small is the new big! New Zealand Opera will visit six hotels across the country next month with the micro-production The Human Voice (La Voix Humaine) staged in hotel rooms. Performed by one singer to a maximum 20 people, this immersive 45-minute opera centres around Elle, a woman alone in a hotel room waiting for the phone to ring so she can speak to her ex-lover one last time.
The Human Voice
will premiere at Harcourts Hawkes Bay Arts Festival, before travelling to Christchurch, Nelson, Wellington and Taupo, wrapping up the tour at Auckland’s Hotel DeBrett in mid-November. Tickets are on sale now at
This tour of The Human Voice features two of Australasia’s finest sopranos, Amanda Atlas and Fiona McAndrew, in alternating performances, accompanied by pianist David Kelly. Christchurch-based Atlas has performed the role in America and Europe, and Auckland resident McAndrew originated the role in the premiere season of this production in Perth.
This production received rave reviews upon opening at The Perth World Fringe festival in 2014, with the West Australian giving it five stars, saying “It’s a tour-de-force from McAndrew, who is sexy and tragic…”
Director Thomas de Mallet Burgess says this production will resonate more than ever with audiences, as the protagonist Elle is struggles to process change and isolation.
“Audience members will be immersed in 45 minutes of intense drama just metres from the central protagonist in a hotel room. The Human Voice is emotional ‘fly on the wall’ drama.”
This is a unique opportunity to experience “the sustained power, searing interiority and superlative musicianship and stagecraft of this fine production” – The West Australian.

Tickets are available now at, and for Hawkes Bay Arts Festival and Nelson Arts Festival, they are available via Eventfinda.

New Zealand Opera presents
The Human Voice
Composed by Poulenc
Libretto by Cocteau
Directed by Thomas de Mallet Burgess
Elle – Fiona McAndrew (6pm), Amanda Atlas (8pm)
Piano – David Kelly

Harcourts Hawkes Bay Arts Festival
13 & 14 October, 6pm & 8pm
Art Deco Masonic Hotel

17, 18, 20, 21 October, 6pm & 8pm
The George

Nelson Arts Festival
24 & 25 October, 6pm & 8pm
The Rutherford Hotel

28, 29, 30, 31 October, 1 & 3 November, 6pm & 8pm

5 & 6 November, 6pm & 8pm
Anchorage Resort

10, 11, 12 November 6pm & 8pm
Hotel DeBrett

New Zealand Opera’s site-specific production of Handel’s Semele will open at Auckland’s Holy Trinity Cathedral on 29 October, and run for five performances. The acclaimed production of Eight Songs for A Mad King will be performed at Tūranga in Christchurch on 3, 5 and 6 December. New Zealand Opera has two concerts in Wellington at St Andrew’s on The Terrace in Wellington next week, featuring Emma Pearson and Amitai Pati on 22 September, and Sarah Castle and Paul Whelan on 25 September. Tickets and more information on all these events are available at