Takatāpui is a show about the day to day (and night to night) meanderings in a queer, Māori body – for Daley Rangi, this is a fluid understanding and experience of their personal gender and sexuality, and disconnection from their culture, slowly being reconnected.
This is currently explored through a specific term, and label; Takatāpui, a way to reclaim their bodily integrity through ancestral means, viewed through a holistic, Māori lens. In English, Daley’s identity could be described as queer, non-binary, and pansexual.
Takatāpui takes the form of a five-part story, based on the lived experience of the performer. The events of the work are not told verbatim but rather in a loose, lyrical manner. However, events do unfold chronologically.
In the show, Daley speaks their story through a microphone, using a voice processor and looper to add effects to their voice and create loops of noises and sounds. Between each part of the story, Daley campily, yet unenthusiastically lip-syncs to disco hits.
The story explores various experiences of internal and external trauma, joy, and violence. The show has many complex themes, and content which may be triggering to some audiences.
The show also deals, in part, with themes and content of sexual assault, so the creative team have undertaken consultation with the Sexual Assault Resource Centre (SARC), to place audience and performer safety at the forefront, whilst ensuring the artistic integrity of Daley’s story. Their resources will be made available at the venue.
The creative team would like readers of this and/or patrons of the show to know that SARC (6458 1828) offers a free counselling service for people that have experienced Sexual Assault – and you don’t even need a Medicare card to book in. We are grateful for SARC’s support of Daley and their story.
Detailed content inclusions (spoilers below!)
In Part 1, Daley prepares themself to go out for a date, getting high, and dressing in a socially feminine and queer outfit – unearthing the complexities and trauma that can come with selfexpression, and the self-hatred that can be exposed. In this part, there is use of coarse language (‘fuck’, ‘cunt’), sexual references, drug references, use of the word ‘f*ggot’, and references to mental health struggles.
In Part 2, Daley travels via train to meet their date, encountering a group of unpleasant men, who taunt and threaten them and their presence, but Daley finds a strategy to move through it. In this part, there is copious use of coarse language, description of homophobic and bigoted behaviours, and momentary references to suicidal ideation, violence, and racism. A short song is created by Daley mocking these behaviours, from the point of view of one of the above men, looping the word ‘f*ggot’, which is also used in other forms during this part.
In Part 3, Daley enters an expensive restaurant, and is overwhelmed by this experience, before meeting their date, who is exactly what, and exactly not what, they expected. This part has use and references to all previous content and language warnings, alongside extended
references to ‘whiteness’ and events of colonisation, specifically in the Pacific.
In Part 4, Daley travels with their date in a taxi, unearthing what happens when the shiny, fauxfriendliness and sheen wears off microaggressions, abuse, and gaslighting. Daley attempts to escape the situation but appears to have been drugged earlier that night.
This part has use and references to all previous content and language, alongside transphobia, implied use of date-rape drugs, and references to sexual assault.
In Part 5, Daley wakes up in their dates house, mid-sexual assault enforced upon them. They manage to escape, and make their way to a public toilet, where they attempt to come to terms with the events of the night, and the violence that can be inflicted upon marginalised communities, both from within and externally. This part has references to and description of sexual assault. The specific section which describes the assault is understated, respectful, and dealt with care.
The work ends with a poem, which moves both Daley and the audience from trauma to healing.