taking the stage, writes Sharu Delilkan.' />
'Pani and Pani' are phat, phunny and they're taking the stage, writes Sharu Delilkan.
Just like Zumba, Panikeke and Panipopo, aka Pani and Pani, are set to take over with their show Phat Chix in the Settee.
The hilarious duo, Anapela Polataivao (Pani) and Goretti Chadwick (Pani), say they came up with the show's concept while trying to do the hula in a chair.
"So the idea to do a chair dance was born," says Polataivao. "I'd like to think of it as Zumba for the belumbas."
The women describe the show, which made its debut late last year at Strictly Brown, as "a cross between Cirque du Soleil and Bikram Yoga".
Says Chadwick. "It's basically two fat chicks that can't be bothered to get up."
Although the show is their first full-length "stand-up" show, both actors are no strangers to theatrical work. Each has been delivering drama and comedy performances in ensemble casts since the early 1990s.
"It's our first comedy festival appearance, so we're not sure what to expect," says Chadwick. "All we know is that we've got our work cut out for us if we want to measure up to the seasoned comedians. We're by no means classifying ourselves as comediennes. We'll always be actors first."
The head of drama at the Pacific Institute of Performing Arts, Polataivao says: "It's important for us to keep doing live shows so our students can see us in action."
Chadwick, a director at PIPA, says it is about time more Pacific Island women put their comedic work in front of audiences to balance male domination in the industry.
"And what better way than two fat chicks being proud of their bodies rather than following the droves who're always trying to find shortcuts to lose weight?"
Kila Kokonut Krew presents Pani + Pani - Phat Chix in the Settee, Herald Theatre, Aotea Centre, until May 15, 7pm. Tickets: The Edge, ph 357 3355 or see www.the-edge.co.nz