Sweet as: From left, actors Vlado Petrovic, Roland Mirabueno, Guillaume Henry, Danny Dukinfield and Angus Pettigrew


One event Covid restrictions have failed to quash is Remarkable Theatre’s 13th annual promenade theatre gardens show this weekend.

This year’s production, Sweet As!, is based on iconic Kiwi TV shows and movies from the 70s to today.

Creative directors and actors Jane Robertson and Melanie Grindell say that after past shows featured the likes of British comedy and Shakespeare, they and fellow creative director Tanya Surrey were keen to bring a New Zealand flavour.

‘‘We’ve never done anything that’s been totally New Zealand content, so we wanted to focus on that,’’ Robertson says.

The show pays homage to shows and movies like It’s In The Bag, Play School, Country Calendar, Gloss, Goodbye Pork Pie, Gliding On, Scarfies, Fair Go, Shortland Street, Outrageous Fortune and Eagle v Shark.

Kiwi comedy legend Fred Dagg might also make an appearance.

Robertson fondly remembers watching ‘80s game show It’s in the Bag with her family gathered around the TV.

‘‘It was the highlight of the week.

‘‘The money and the prizes that you could win … it could be life-changing.’’

One of the most striking things, Grindell says, are the generational gaps between some of the actors in the 25-strong cast.

‘‘We’ve had actors be like, ‘I don’t know anything about Shortland Street’ and then I’d say to some of the younger ones, ‘Do you know anything about Gliding On?’ and [they had] never heard of that.

‘‘It’s a great way of bringing those characters and those memories through the decades and through the generations that we have in Queenstown.’’

Robertson says after revisiting some of the featured titles, the humour has clearly stood the test of time.

‘‘Whilst we can say that some of It’s in the Bag is actually a bit ridiculous, some of the elements of entertainment, they really haven’t changed.

‘‘They still have the same human elements that make them really relatable and purely good entertainment.’’

Each scene will be performed in a different part of the gardens, meaning the audience will move around as the show progresses.

Robertson encourages people to bring chairs, picnics and blankets as there will be points in the show where people will be seated for some time.

Given current Covid-19 restrictions, there will be a limit of 100 people per show, with vaccine passes required on entry.

Sweet As!, meet at Queenstown Gardens white rotunda, Friday 6pm, Saturday and Sunday 2pm, 4pm, 6pm.