“Amataga o le Alofa” (The Beginning of Love) is a Samoan theatre play that was created right here within the Samoan community of Melbourne. The play was written by Delsa Tuitea, directed by Steve Tafea and performed by local talent including Nesian Pearl dance group, Tama Tatau dance group and The Melbourne Samoan Choir. A beautiful touch to this premiere event was the opening performance by local barbershop quartet “DFX” from Dandenong VIC. In partnership with Multicultural Arts Victoria (MAV), PICAA INC. presented “Amataga o le Alofa” to a sold-out audience in June 2016 at The Richmond Theatrette, as part of the Yarra City’s Emerge Festival. We received positive feedback and encouragement from our Samoan community and so we set out to develop the play and prepare it for larger audiences in September 2016, at Plentry Ranges Arts Convention Centre (South Morang VIC), and Rivergum Performing Arts Centre (Hampton Park, VIC).
AMATAGA O LE ALOFA blurb:
Conflict creates an imbalance of power for the heavenly gods Tagaloa, Lau A’au, and Anoano when Tagaloa impulsively creates a new land and sea far from their reign, in order to continue their legacy. Caughtin in the midst of this struggle are their children, and future rulers, Tagi and tuli, who are caught in a love triangle with the beautiful Sina. They young gods are torn between their unprofessed love for Sina and their duties as children of supreme gods. AMATAGA O LE ALOFA offers a showcase of Samoan creative arts and artists in the form of music, dance, theatre and craft, exploring themes of power, hidden agendas, familial duties and honour whilst framed in the beautiful Samoan culture.
Photo: The cast of “Amataga o le Alofa” in rehearsal (May 2016, Laverton VIC). L-R Danny Wairasi, Tavai Faasavalu, Patrick Faaaifili, and Sanele Savea. Photo: PICAA INC.