Music critics worldwide have praised Marlon Williams' voice, comparing his smooth tones to Elvis Presley and Roy Orbison. In 2018 Williams had a stellar year: he won several music awards — including the APRA Silver Scroll Award and Tuis for Best Solo Artist, Album and Music Video — and scored a cameo role in Bradley Cooper's remake of A Star is Born. Williams first won fame in Christchurch as a 17-year-old, when he founded and fronted folk band The Unfaithful Ways. He also sang with musicians Delaney Davidson and Tami Neilson, before moving to Melbourne in 2013 to start a globetrotting solo career.
Country music duo Delaney Davidson and Marlon Williams joined forces in 2012. An attraction of opposites, they combine Williams’ fresh faced youth and vocal purity with Davidson’s hard won experience and more world wearied tones. Both are part of a vibrant Lyttelton music community with Williams previously a member of The Unfaithful Ways, while Davidson is an established globetrotting solo performer. Their debut Sad But True: Volume One won the Tui for Country Album of the Year in 2013. Co-written track ‘Bloodletter’ took out Song of the Year.
Crooner Marlon Williams has called 'Vampire Again' "my own demented tale of New Age self-affirmation". The song was born after he discovered he was the only person to dress up as a vampire for a screening of 1922 horror classic Nosferatu. Williams directs the music video; his portrayal of dance fiend and comical bloodsucker reflects his belief that good material can be found in the tension between serious and foolish. The video was shot and cut by veteran music photographer Steve Gullick (Nirvana). It won Best Music Video at the 2018 Vodafone NZ Music Awards.
Contemporary troubadours Marlon Williams and Delaney Davidson delve deep into the sounds of traditional country music. After co-writing ‘Bloodletter’, from their debut album Sad but True: Volume 1, they won the NZ Music Award for Country Song of the Year. The gothic tale of tragedy and misery is visualised by director Tim McIness via a Once Upon a Time in The South horseback pursuit, as Williams tracks a fleeing Davidson. The wide open spaces of mid-Canterbury’s Mesopotamia Station make an admirable substitute for the frontier’s big sky country.
Actor Kevin Smith could do it all; from brooding like Brando in a Tennessee Williams play, through Xena, to the gentle romantic lead of Double Booking, and self-parody in Love Mussel. Collected here are selections from a career cut short (he died in a 2002 film-set accident). Plus tributes from James Griffin, Michael Hurst, Geoffrey Dolan and Simon Prast.
Director Alison Maclean (Kitchen Sink, Jesus' Son) returned to New Zealand for this adaptation of Eleanor Catton's acclaimed debut novel. The psychological drama stars James Rolleston (The Dead Lands) as one of a group of acting students who use a real-life sex scandal involving a tennis coach, as creative fuel for their end of year show. The cast mixes experienced names (Kerry Fox and Miranda Harcourt as drama teachers) with emerging talents (Ella Edward). Connan Mockasin supplies the soundtrack. The Rehearsal debuted at the 2016 NZ International Film Festival.
In this second feature from filmmaker Martin Sagadin, two women inch towards romance until the arrival of a stranger seeking a bed for the night changes the dynamic. Sagadin's adopted city of Christchurch is like a fourth character in the story; as the women (played by Alayne Dick and Illinois-born Hannah Herchenbach) walk and talk, the sunlit streets of the city take on different moods. Sagadin's experimental feature Oko na Roki was part of the 2018 NZ International Film Festival. Sagadin has also directed videos for Christchurch musicians Marlon Williams and Aldous Harding.