Born in the Rangitikei and raised in the Manawatu, Carl acted as a youngster in school where he also wrote and performed/staged his own plays. Leaving acting for music at high school he did not return to the stage for 15 years, in Slip of the Tongue’s 2005 adaptation of Richard III. Since then he has performed on stage in front of the camera and in the great outdoors. Only ever accepting or auditioning for roles that he knows will challenge and stimulate him, Carl is known for his versatility, intensity, and absolute commitment to his roles.
Benny Marama is a very tall actor-person. He has been involved in local theatre for a number of years and has had the pleasure of working with many varied theatre groups. This year Benny has appeared in The Merchant of Venice, Ross MacLeod's musical Loyal and the 2012 Hamilton Gardens Summer Festival's season of A Midsummer Night's Dream. In Dracula Benny portrays the part of the Monster, a part which his older sisters say he was born to play. This is why Benny tells people that he is an only child.
Nick has been heavily involved in the Hamilton theatre scene as an actor, singer, director, producer and compere. More familiar in musical theatre circles, Nick is thrilled to be given the oportunity to play Van Helsing in Dracula and the challenges it brings. Notable roles to Nick's credit include Riff Raff in The Rocky Horror Show, Bill Sykes in Oliver!, The Engineer in Miss Saigon, Mickey in Blood Brothers, Danny in Grease, Claude in Hair, Captain Von Trapp in The Sound of Music, Jerry in The Full Monty, Joseph in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and Munkistrap in Cats.
Will has been an avid thespian since an early age. He has had many roles in performances such as; The Tempest (as Stephano), The Birthday Party (as Petey) and Pygmalion (as Colonel Pickering). Will spent some time in Wellington during which he performed in two Young and Hungry productions; Oyster by Vivienne Plumb (as Napoleon) and Hearts Encoded by Aaron Alexander (as Chorus). This is Will’s second venture with Carving and Ice, the first being Cow & Fold earlier this year. Will has really enjoyed working on Dracula and the challenges it presents.
Michael has been performing with Carving in Ice for some years. Other productions he has been a part of recently are: W;t (Jason Posner), In The Next Room (Leo Irving), The Last Days of Don Juan (Don Gonzallo/the stone visitor), West Side Story (Tony) and Cow & Fold (The Glitterman). Michael also likes to sing classically and direct opera (more recently Benjamin Britten's The Little Sweep). He is currently learning classical singing under Dame Malvina Major. Michael is very glad to be a part of another production directed by Gaye Poole and has found the collaboration with Hamilton Operatic a very new experience.
Rachel has been involved with the Arts since an early age, beginning with dance and progressing through to theatre in high school, featuring in productions such as A Woman of No Importance (Mrs Arbuthnot) and A Streetcar Named Desire (Stella). Last year she participated in the Fringe Festival, taking the part of Wendla in Spring Awakening. Though previously involved with Carving in Ice as part of the production team last year, this is Rachel’s first time acting with the company. She looks forward to this season of Dracula and working with this amazing team.
Jeremy is a Theatre Hillary Scholar beginning his first year at the University of Waikato, undertaking a conjoint degree (B Teach/BA majoring in Theatre Studies). He has been involved with Speech and Drama and the Performing Arts for many years, as well as participating in college productions, which in his final year (2011) saw him in the role of Sonny in Grease and Tupper in Foreskin’s Lament. This is Jeremy’s second time working with Carving in Ice having previously being in Cow and Fold earlier in the year and first time working with the Hamilton Operatic Society.
Mandy studied and taught Drama in England and spent a large part of her life at the Retford Little Theatre, Nottinghamshire where she was involved in youth theatre, plays and musicals. She has loved being involved with numerous productions at Fraser High School, including roles in High School Musical and Grease. Mandy has relished being in the Carving in Ice productions of Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom and Away and Hamilton Operatic’s production of The Secret Garden.
Clive has dabbled in theatre for a number of years, appearing irregularly in productions in Auckland and at the Riverlea Theatre. Since fortuitously enrolling in a Theatre Studies paper at the University of Waikato some four years ago he has completed a number of such papers, and has appeared in a number of plays directed by Gaye (most of them Carving in Ice productions), among them Cosi, Compleat Female Stage Beauty, Attempts on her Life, W;t, and The Three Sisters, as well as Death of a Salesman (Fullhouse Productions). Clive is also a keen amateur musician, and conductor of the Hamilton vocal group MineAccord.
Shannon is a Theatre Studies Honours student at the University of Waikato. This is her first time working with Carving in Ice and is enjoying getting amongst a new group of people. This is also her first nonhuman role, which is certainly more physically challenging (especially the dancing) and unlike anything she has done in theatre before. Prior to her move to Hamilton, Shannon hadn’t had much experience with theatre but has since grown in confidence with the help of Theatre Studies at Uni and the Hamilton theatre community.
Since Annie was little, she has always tried to perform anytime, anywhere. Her first on stage production was High School Musical, when she was living in the USA. She came to New Zealand in 2008 and has since been involved with several high school productions such as Animal Farm, The Crucible and South Pacific. Annie currently attends the University of Waikato where she studies Sport and Leisure Studies and Theatre Studies. Recently she performed in the Convent of Pleasure directed by Gaye. Annie also performed in Allo’ Allo’ with Hamilton Playbox.
Hannah was bitten by the theatre bug at a young age, and has since been involved in as many theatre-related activities as her school provides, as well as being lucky enough to be involved in outside productions. This year she has already acted in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, during the Hamilton Garden Summer Arts Festival, and Loyal. She has also competed in the Sheilah Winn Shakespeare Festival Nationals. In her last year of high school at Waikato Diocesan School, she plans to continue in the theatre in the future – after all, she’s relatively certain she wouldn’t exist without it.
Conor has played an interesting variety of characters in his brief stint as an actor, but with Dracula faces his biggest challenge yet: understudying for Jonathan Harker- the play's primary lover. This makes a refreshing change from his first role in a Carving in Ice production, as the simple Simon-esque farmboy Larry, in Jo Randerson's Cow. Harker is strong, handsome and brave - much unlike Conor (except for maybe the handsome part). Conor's primary part in this production is much further inside his comfort zone - an asylum inmate who's not entirely all there in the sanity department.
Mary is relatively new to Hamilton - she moved here in January this year - but is no stranger to the stage, having been acting, dancing and generally being obsessive about theatre since a very young age. She has come a long way since playing Princess Jasmine in Aladdin in her garage at age 9, with recent roles including a cyborg (Project Born), Edith Parrish (Dad's Army), God and Miss Zazel (The Best Thing). This is her first time working with Carving in Ice and Hamilton Operatic and she is thrilled to be working with Gaye and the rest of the fabulous Dracula cast and crew.
Vivi (11) loves acting and singing. She is really enjoying working with the Dracula team and learning a great deal from them. Vivi has previously played roles in Musikmakers' productions of The Sound of Music and Oliver and is currently Nellie in Southwell School's Annie Get Your Gun. Vivi is the current NZ Country Music Association's Junior Young Entertainer of the Year, a NZ Gold Guitar award winner and a grand finalist in Australia’s Battle of The Young Stars at the 2012 Tamworth Country Music Festival.
Miriama is a confident, bubbly, nine year old student of Melville primary school where she is involved in Kapa Haka and is currently learning the violin. She is an enthusiastic girl with a lot of energy who cartwheels as a form of transportation. She has enjoyed exerting her energy at Gymnastics for the past two years. She also attends St Johns Cadets with her two brothers. Although Miriama is often a very theatrical young girl and a whiz at charades this is her first time to the theatre stage.
Noir is an eleven-month-old Black Berkshire rat; in human years he is almost thirty. Originally from Dargaville, he came to Hamilton, to his current family, when he was just six weeks old. He lives with his brother Pinot and four other cage-mates. Weighing in at a touch over 700g, Noir is the biggest and most placid of the Burt rats. His hobbies include sleeping and eating; his favourite food is scrambled eggs and his favourite place to make a nest is an old egg carton or a cardboard box filled with newspaper. Dracula is Noir’s debut acting performance