The Unfolding of Benjamin's Misery : Dunedin Fringe Festival

The Unfolding of Benjamin's Misery

Look at this fellow. How come the exact same face looks both miserable and cheerful simultaneously?

The Unfolding of Benjamin's Misery

The Unfolding of Benjamin’s Misery is a one-person tragicomedy piece that examines the possibility of modern everyday dissidents in global capitalism through exploring the vulnerability of foreign labourers. Carefully interweaving techniques of Clown/Dark Clown, spoken word poetry, and physical theatre, Benjamin’s Misery offers a super theatrical experience that is hilarious, poignant and lyrical.

Benjamin is an undocumented migrant, working as an usher for an event venue in Dunedin. To be frank, he is exploited. Like, seriously. He gets less than the minimum wage. Even so, he is happy because he still earns more than he would back in his homeland. And, of course, his Boss couldn’t be happier. They need each other and are better off together. Who cares about economic injustice and domination when the purpose of life has become no more than earning money?

Well, Bard does. He is a world-roaming counterpart of Benjamin, just as poor. Nonetheless, he does not succumb to the great force of economic rationality. He may have only 50 cents in his wallet, but he has 500 poems that he wrote in his notebooks. He values the long-lost virtues like truth, happiness and justice over money, wage labour and consumption.

Now, when Bard comes for performance/workshop at the Fringe venue Benjamin works, the encounter between the two inevitably starts unfolding Benjamin’s misery. If every tragedy is an unfinished comedy and every comedy an unbegun tragedy, where is Benjamin’s life taking him now?

Bio: Hideto Akasu is an emerging interdisciplinary artist whose artwork reflects his unique perspective he has developed through the experience of living as the cultural other in different parts of the world. As a performing artist, he is the winner of Liverpool Poetry Slam Championship 2018. As a visual artist, his artworks are featured in Wotisart magazine (October, November, December 2018).

Warning: Partial nudity

Secured Entry Advance Ticket (SEAT) gives an audience member the security of having a reserved seat for $3 and they can then make their koha or donation at the venue before or after the show.




Secured Entry Advance Ticket (SEAT) : $3.00
SEAT gives an audience member the security of having a reserved seat for $3 and they can then make their koha or donation at the venue before or after the show.


0 hr 50 mins



50 Dundas Street, Dunedin

Spoken Word Theatre Comedy

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About Us

The Dunedin Fringe Festival is the world’s southernmost festival of its kind. Initiated in 2000, Dunedin Fringe aims to bring experimental contemporary art to a wider audience and to support the work of emerging artists. Dunedin Fringe is an annual event which happens every March timed to coincide with other fringe festivals in New Zealand and Australia.

Our Contacts

Dunedin Fringe Arts Trust
PO Box 1331
Dunedin 9054
New Zealand

03 477 3350