I know Rent is pretty bad in lots of ways, but it was life changing for 16 year old me, in a world that lacked representations of gender or sexual diversity. After a truly disappointing movie version I was keen to give it another try, so when a friend invited us to Otaki to watch the local players version of it I booked travel immediately.

For non-New Zealanders (or even some New Zealanders who might not know where it is) Otaki is a small rural town outside of Wellington, with a population of less than 6,000. The Otaki Players, however, seem to be a thriving group of avid thespians, and their rendition of Rent was amazing. The singing was so incredible, but what I really loved about it was the body diversity – there was such a nice range of different shaped people, that major productions of Rent would never do, because, you know, dumbness.