Hugh Jackman has announced he'll be bringing his stage show The Man. The Music. The Show. to New Zealand in September.
The Golden Globe, Grammy and Tony Award-winning performer announced the news earlier today at a press conference at AUT's Manukau Campus in Auckland.
The Aussie star revealed he intentionally chose to host the press conference at the venue, after he saw a video of students singing songs from The Greatest Showman at the university campus.
"I get sent at least five videos a day, but none are as meaningful as these kids at AUT. I cried watching it," Hugh revealed.
Later adding that he'd watched the viral video 10 times now and it was like a "bullet to my heart."
"You can't fake that heart or realness."
The show will see Hugh perform hit songs from The Greatest Showman, Les Misérables and more from Broadway and film, accompanied by a live orchestra and a special guest appearance from his The Greatest Showman co-star, Keala Settle.
Beginning the press conference with a performance of The Greatest Showman's A Million Dreams, accompanied by the university's choir, his co-star Keala then performed an emotional rendition of This Is Me, before the two were welcomed with a rousing haka, performed by the students.
Introducing Keala, who was in tears and unable to speak after the haka, Jackman says she was "the heart" of The Greatest Showman and explains that her mother was in fact Maori, so she had a "very deep connection to the land, the people and the stories."
Hugh and Keala were then gifted onewa stones by AUT - Keala's to "represent your whakapapa" and Hugh's represents mana, "to reciprocity to your visit."
"Thank you from the bottom of our hearts," Hugh said.
"I have to speak for both of us [as Keala is crying]. This is an incredibly special day.
"I've been to many, many places, but today is a day I'll never forget. It's a beautiful, beautiful occasion on a very deep level.
"It's full-on! Full on," Kaela adds.
"I'm a big rugby fan," Hugh explains.
"I spend my life watching it and I've always wondered how they perform after the haka.
"Now I'm in that situation!
"So now you're an All Blacks fan?," Kaela asks.
"Don't get me in trouble," Hugh jokes.
Hugh went on to chat about his love for New Zealand, revealing he first visited Aotearoa when he was 10 years old, travelling the entire country in just 10 days with his family, and while he said he hadn't enjoyed being holed up in a campervan for six hours a day, he says it is the people here in New Zealand that he loves.
"For me, it's about the people.
"My kids have travelled the world and they don't get excited about many places, but they're excited about coming here."
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