The Minack Theatre
"Merlin's Child: Legend of Arthur 2006"
Most young New Zealanders are a peripatetic lot, keen to see other parts of the world and expand their experiences of life. It's almost a rite of passage for a young man or woman to go off on their Big OE (overseas experience), and for those of us with family ties, the obvious base for work and travel is the UK.
For me, with grandparents that called England and Scotland .... ‘Home' or the ‘Auld Country' .... things were a bit different. I'd grown up reading about the romance and mystique associated with the tales of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. ....... but it took me nearly 40 yrs to realise my dream of one day visiting those special places.
We discovered the Minack Theatre quite by accident. We knew absolutely nothing about it previously, but we had to book nearly six month in advance to be sure of being able to attend while we were in Cornwall. We had no idea of what we'd be seeing. All we knew was that it was an outdoor theatre and that the performance was very rarely postponed even to inclement weather.
The day arrived, and it really was beautiful sunny day ....The sea was a deep blue, with steep, rocky cliffs, with a fringing thin band of yellow beach ... just perfect, and the performance was "Merlin's Child: Legend of Arthur". The sound was perfect, and there was even the distraction of seeing a basking shark cruising the inlet just to the right.
For the benefactor and developer of the site Rowena Cade, it must have been a labour of love with both the theatre and the rugged Cornish landscape. She has created an asset of great natural and cultural beauty, for the benefit of all.
Incidentally the first group of ‘houses' in the Port Nicholson settlement (Wellington 1839) was known as Cornish Row. It's a small world after all.
About the author KahuI'm a retired teacher, with an interest in travelling, water colour painting, reading, and earth sciences.
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(This article was added on 30th October 2009)