In Samoan Lele means “fly.” In 2018 WEYA made Lele Butterfly, a modern adaptation of Antigone recontextualised to the contemporary world with a focus on the Samoan Australian diaspora.
In 2021 stories of young Polynesian gangs are rife in the Australian media, rap and violence and death being plastered across our nation’s consciousness. There felt like no better time to revisit our adaption and breathe new life into it for our Polynesian, BIPOC and immigrant communities alike.
Spearheaded by Rexson Pelman, Michael Logo and Chanella Macri - three Samoan artists and collaborators - Lele focuses in on the Samoan Australian experience of culture, honour, family and growing up in, around and outside of the Fa’a Samoa (the tradition Samoan ‘way’.)
A development and exploration of our modern experiences and stories through the classic Greek tragedy - a questioning of what is and what has been, planting our feet and standing in the future of Samoan identity.
Lele is part love letter, part rap and spoken word epic, part coming-home, part eulogy and all parts, reclamation and retelling.
Public performance in 2022.
The Bowery Theatre and Western Edge Youth Arts (WEYA) are working in partnership to develop and present Lele Butterfly.