It's hard to sleep when you don't know what dawn will bring.

Dawn Raids

by Oscar Kightley

16 AUG - 3 SEP 2022 — Theatre



Auckland Theatre Company


ASB Waterfront Theatre


2 hours, no interval


Contains themes of racism, violence and strong language that some may find triggering

Legendary Pasifika theatre collective Pacific Underground revisits Dawn Raids 25 years on, in the wake of the Apology.

Central Auckland. 1973. Fuarosa sleeps with one eye on the front door, in fear of it bursting open. Sione struggles to keep the peace by day and croons Elvis love songs by night. Teresa turns to activism to channel her rage but only her mate Bene hears her. Steve is a policeman, turning his own people out of their homes – even though it turns his stomach. Mose supports the raids and scorns overstayers.

Join Sione and his band, the Noble Hawai’ian Sabretooth Tigers, as they welcome you to the Paradise Honeypot Club where everything is beautiful, until it isn’t.

Oscar Kightley’s contemporary classic contrasts white-hot anger at the injustice visited upon Pacific People with wit and warmth, and Elvis - lots of Elvis. An unmissable new production of Dawn Raids, given fresh potency by the Apology.

“A searing and raw look at a community under siege from its own government from a shameful time in Aotearoa’s history, only now being atoned for.” – Jonathan Bielski

A co-production between Auckland Theatre Company and Pacific Underground.

By arrangement with Playmarket.


Show Programme


Dawn Raids is an essential experience... a work that does our stories justice.”
New Zealand Herald

“A history lesson in the best way... See Dawn Raids.”
The Spinoff

“Beautifully executed, funny, poignant, historically epic theatre.”

“Fresh and relevant. Kightley’s writing is splendid.”
Andrew Whiteside

“Succeeds in the best possible way… Do go and see it.”
Keeping up with NZ


Ways to Save

Pay What You Wish

If you haven't been to the theatre before, tonight is for you. Yes, you can literally pay what you want just to come and see. Everyone is welcome.

Dawn Raids Pay What You Wish
Tue 23 August 5:30pm (performance starts at 7pm)

This performance goes on sale closer to the show on a first in, first serve basis. If you can, please consider booking a standard ticket to another show to secure your seat.

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30 & Under

If you are 30 years or under, and love theatre, you can get $30 tickets to any show by Auckland Theatre Company. 

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Group Pricing

Book six or more tickets to one performance and save at least $5 off the price of a regular Adult ticket.

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Preview Performances

Save 20% on an Adult ticket for Auckland Theatre Company shows when you book see the first performances of a season before opening night.

Dawn Raids Preview Nights
Tue 16 & Wed 17 August

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Special Events

Backstage Story (Cancelled)

Mon 1 Aug 6:00pm
Discover the world behind the curtain at Backstage Story, a behind-the-scenes presentation with the director, designers and cast. Backstage Story is free to attend at our studios at 487 Dominion Road.

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Sunday Forum

Sun 21 Aug 3:00pm
Join us at the ASB Waterfront Theatre auditorium, before the 4pm performance, to hear from a special guest speaker and enrich your experience of the show.

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Pay What You Wish

Tue 23 Aug 5:30pm

Our doors are thrown open on Pay What You Wish night.

Join us and experience live performance with like-minded people, in an atmosphere that values community and inspires creativity. Everyone is welcome.

Tunes, drinks, art installations and a free photobooth will be provided, followed by a performance of Dawn Raids. And yes, you can literally pay what you want.

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Accessible Performances

Audio-Described & Touch Tour

Tue 30 Aug 7:00pm
Audio-described performances are open to all and include a live audio commentary relayed to blind and low-vision patrons in the audience via an earpiece. Patrons with accessibility tickets can also attend a touch-tour 90 minutes before the performance. 

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Sat 3 Sep 2:00pm
NZSL-interpreted performances are open to all and feature an interpreter on stage to interpret the show for Deaf and hard-of-hearing patrons in the audience.

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Ways to Save

Concession prices, 30 & Under, accessibility tickets and more to get the best ticket price.

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Give the Gift of a Night Out

Gift ideas for someone who wants a night (or a full year) of quality entertainment.

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Tips for a Night at the Theatre

Make the most of your theatre experience with these tips to help you prepare

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