Wild Feelings by Co Theatre Physical


Wild Feelings by Beth Kayes WON the Playmarket NZ ‘Plays for the Young‘ 2023 in the 8-12 year old category.


Co Theatre Physical’s new show Wild Feelings, for years 1-6, combines the curriculum areas of Science and Hauora through the characters of a jealous tūī bird and a famous bar-tailed godwit (kūaka).

Hauora: We dive deep into difficult emotions with the jealous tūī and surface with multiple ways to process and resolve uncomfortable feelings.

Science: We journey across the world with the kūaka and learn about her adventures and environmental challenges. ‘Wild Feelings’ examines the life cycles of the tūī and the kūaka, their interaction with other creatures including predators, the threats to their habitats, and the impacts that humans have on these creatures.


Wild Feelings features a jealous tūī bird and a marathon flying bar-tailed godwit (kūaka). When the kūaka lands in Thames after her incredible 12,000 km, 8-day flight, the media and scientists flock around her to capture her success. But Tūī is jealous and rude to her old friend the kūaka. Fed up with her life in Aotearoa- fighting off increasing numbers of rats and other predators- Tūī wants to gallivant around the world and be adored by scientists and media too. The Bird Fitness Inspector laughs at her dream and reminds her that Tūī birds are fit for breeding, pollinating and short flights near their trees, here in Aotearoa.

Tūī now has a heaviness inside her, angry, jealous feelings which she can’t escape. Desperate, she flies to see the Wild Feelings Bird. He is half ghost, half bird, 100’s of years old. Together they journey through Wild Feelings Land and Tūī learns many different ways to identify and deal with the storm of feelings inside her.

On her return, Tūī visits Kūaka to rebuild their friendship but finds her exhausted from nightmares-her chicks have not yet arrived from Alaska and she is haunted by the dangers of her last journey. Tūī is shocked to hear what Kūaka has overcome and concerned that if she doesn’t get stronger in her mind and heart, the Bird Fitness Centre will declare her unfit to fly on the next migration. Tūī helps her, using some of her training from Wild Feelings Land and in the Autumn Kūaka is strong enough to fly. Tūī farewells her friend and promises to welcome her back to Thames next Spring.

Co Theatre Physical mixes story, vivid characters, physical theatre and comedy. Monarch – winner of the 2021 ‘Plays for the Young’ (Playmarket NZ) and Royal Jelly have both toured to schools in the last few years.

Suitability: School Years 1-6
Duration: 50 minutes
Price: $5 (+ GST) per student (Minimum audience 130 children)

Feedback about Wild Feelings:

It was fantastic! The children were absolutely fizzing! We loved your incredible performance! It was wonderful having an energetic and engaging show about growing our emotional literacy!

Thanks very much for a dynamic, energetic and enjoyable show. Our tamariki were really engaged and enthralled from start to finish. The content was also directly linked to what we’ve been learning and discussing at school.

The ‘Wild Feelings’ show was such a great experience for our tamariki. It was lots of fun and full of great learning that suited all age groups from Year 1s to our Year 6s. There was so much laughter and great interaction from our students. They were engaged from the start to the finish. Thank you yet again for providing wonderful entertainment with meaningful messages.