Steampunk students create grim new world

00:29, Jun 19 2014
Bhutanese refugees
STAGE SET: Golden Bay High School students and stars of the play they wrote: The Light of Lumingrad.

A dash of steampunk, a hint of Gotham City and a dose of harsh reality are the ingredients of an original play by Golden Bay students.

Golden Bay High School theatre students will perform their work The Light of Lumingrad next week.

The play is a tragedy set in a dystopian future, "as in really depressing", said young actor Kynan Cowley-Hunt. The setting is a city the students dreamed up called Lumingrad, which was inspired by Batman's Gotham City.

Another influence is steampunk, a subculture of science fiction with a strong Victorian feel, typically featuring steam-powered technology.

It's also described as gothic punk. The genre has taken off in Oamaru, which has an annual Steampunk festival and a shop.

Martine Baanvinger, who directed the popular play Finding Eleanor last year, is directing the Golden Bay production.


The leading character, Odian, is played by Jonathan Martin, who describes The Light of Lumingrad as being about "transcending your upbringing."

"I [my character] had a really rough childhood; my father was an abusive alcoholic.

"My story is having something happen that destroys my childhood, where that got me and where I go from that," said Jonathan.

After improvising around a plot and deepening the characters, several students wrote the production.

The Light of Lumingrad stars Calvin Wilkinson, Alfred Condell, Courtney Broadhurst, Kasey Benge, Skyla Boomert, Jonathan Martin and Kynan Cowley-Hunt.

The Light of Lumingrad will be performed with another production, Anton Chekhov's The Bear, on June 27 and 28 at Golden Bay High School, starting at 7.30pm.

The Nelson Mail