Heather du Plessis-Allan: I'd happily relive the summer of unruly tourists on stage

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Fri, 28 May 2021, 7:23PM

Heather du Plessis-Allan: I'd happily relive the summer of unruly tourists on stage

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Fri, 28 May 2021, 7:23PM

Who would have guessed that it was possible that the rowdy tourists who came here two summers ago are still upsetting all over again?

This time it’s the board of NZ Opera who are upset.

A third of them have resigned over the company’s plans to stage an opera about the rowdy tourists. 

Dunno about you…but I loved the idea.

That was a whirlwind of a summer and I’d happily relive it on stage.

Now the looks of things it’s an accumulation of frustrations that has led the board members to resign… and some of it seems to be because of the crazy things the company’s general director is prepared to try in order ‘save’ opera. 

According to legendary opera tenor Simon O’Neill, poking fun at the rowdy tourists is “middle class snobbery”.

Is it?  I don’t’ think we took the mickey out of them because of their class… I don’t even think class really matters in New Zealand. I think we took the micky out of them because of their bad behaviour 

They were up and down this country causing trouble like mad cats. They left litter on Takapuna Beach… shoplifted… didn’t pay for meals… verbally abused people… ended up in court… and let their kid who looked all of about four years old get away with pulling the fingers at cameras.

That’s got nothing to do with class. It’s got everything to with bad behaviour 

The reason I’m raising this is because this isn’t the first time recently that people calling out bad behaviour have ended up accused of being classist. 

National MP Nicola Willis copped it two months ago when she pointed out a whole lot of bad behaviour in Wellington City Central was the result of the people who’d been moved into emergency accommodation hotels there.

Marama Davidson accused of her “racist and classist” undertones - gimme a break. 

If you think that bad behaviour is connected to a particular class of people then YOU need to check your own prejudice 

We’re not poking fun at them because were’ middle class snobs…we’re poking fun at them because they were completely out of hand.