Shrek brightens the day for sick kids

Hannah Spedding as Fiona and Matt Henderson as Shrek visited Tauranga Hospital earlier this week to brighten the day.

Patients and visitors at Tauranga Hospital received a surprise visit from a couple of famous fairy-tale characters earlier this week, when Shrek and Princess Fiona popped in.

The gruff but good-natured green ogre and his feisty princess (played by Matt Henderson and Hannah Spedding) visited the Children’s Ward to spread a little cheer and pose for photos.

Children’s Ward clinical nurse manager Lynnece Dowle-Back says it was a great surprise for the kids.

“It was wonderful seeing them and I just want to say thank you to the cast members for taking the time to visit us on the Children’s Ward. You only have to look at the reactions from the children and the expressions on their faces to know what it means to them. It’s magical for the children.”

Later this month Matt and Hannah will be joined by many of Tauranga’s best singers, actors, and dancers on stage at Baycourt at the New Zealand premiere of ‘Shrek: The Musical’, an adaptation of the popular 2001 film of the same name.

Stage Right Trust, a new local theatre company, is staging the production in Tauranga, and trustee Alec Were says they want to bring the show to as many people as possible.

“Live theatre has a short window to transport a person inside a story and evoke a response. For the children in hospital we hope our Shrek visit was a chance to let imagination become reality.”

Locals can catch Shrek on stage from September 22-29. For tickets visit: www.premier.ticketek.co.nz or the Baycourt box office.