The Imperial Romans of NZ
Who are we? We're a group of good friends devoted to Roman Living History displays. Our members are from all walks of life. Many are skilled in engineering, metal working, blacksmithing, armory, and handicrafts. Some have degrees in Ancient History, Classics, Latin and Archaeology. Most are interested in the performing arts, or martial arts and sword fighting. Together we have a wide range of talents to form an effective team that really enjoys both educating and entertaining the public. This page helps to introduce us, and put a public face to our club.
Brett Clark (Lucius Junius Brutus) - club captain, holds a BA Degree in Ancient History and Classics from Auckland University, and has a Roman temple in his backyard. His Roman website is www.bloodyfunny.com
Jason Saunders (Tiberius Lupus Gracchus) our signifer standard-bearer is qualified in special FX for movies and does much of our art work, and makes our military standards to world-class levels. He also plays a gladiator (Amam the Egyptian). His Roman work is displayed at the House of Tiberius and his Egyptian art at Thutmose III
Benjamin Selfe (Laurentius Maximus Hilarius) is a talented stage actor studying theater performance and also blacksmithing where he has made many of his own weapons. He shows a natural bent for stunt fighting and will be a formidable gladiator.
Elen Rogers designs her own range of Ellie's Jewellery that can be custom-made to your order. She is a noble matrona and Roman domina that helps run the camp, support the troops and records the shows. Many of the videos seen on this site have to be credited as Ellie's work.
Darren White (Marcus Albus Britannicus) is Head of Classics at an Auckland college, and as a native of Britannia familiar with Romano-British archaeology. He is an expert in Roman and Greek history, literature and philosophy.
Lance Bridgford (Marcus Agrippa Pontus) is an Associate Member, a good Roman, loyal, steadfast and true.
He is an avid cyclist and a Property Investor. More inclined to the Legion than the gladitorial arena.
Daniel Balderrama (Gaius Terentius Varro) is a Classics student with an encyclopedic knowledge of Roman history akin to Pliny the Elder. Seen here in the Queen St Santa Parade with an admirer trying to punch her way through his shield - but the line held!
Garry Hill fights in the Roman arena as a provocator gladiator, Garricus of Syria, and is here shown holding the palm of victory awarded by the Priestess of Fortuna for killing his opponent. Garry is highly experienced in a great many forms of ancient and medieval combat.
Clinton Smith (Pilosus Pecus) is an expert in mixing alcohols (a fine Roman tradition). He marches with Leg VI, and is training for victory in the gladiatorial arena.
Victor Rosendale (Lucius Antoninus) - Vice Captain and Authenticity Officer, holds a Masters Degree in Ancient History from Auckland University. He fights as Lucius the Damned, a giant murmillo gladiator, and competes in Full Contact Medieval Combat with heavy weapons.
David Layzell (Titus Flavius Josephus) is a Science teacher and specialist in genetics and human evolution. He speaks Hindi and provides annual volunteer scientific educational aid to India. He fights as a hoplomachus gladiator (Decebalus the Dacian) and practices Italian longsword fighting.
Mitchel Green (Marcus Octavius Crassipes) is studying genetics at Massey University. He is a Roman legionary and fights in the arena as a murmillo gladiator, Marcus Carnifex the Butcher. Mitch is the ideal Roman soldier - tough, smart and reliable.
Keith Gerald Mudgway (Pinguis Sus) is a very experienced Roman legionary, archer and sword fighter.
He fights in the Roman arena as the infamous villian gladiator Pinguis Sus - the "Fat Pig" Secutor - and is a real crowd favourite.
Alexander James Holloway (Alex) - an associate member - is an Actor, Fight Choreographer, and Stage Combat Teacher who runs the False Edge Theatre training academy and the False Edge facebook page. Alex has helped train our gladiators to improve their live performance for our shows. He is in charge of fight choreography for the Shakespeare plays at the Pop-up Globe Theatre Company and has received rave reviews for his work.
Alf Nagels (Appius Naevius Paetus) is a brother in the legion, but also brother to the emperor, so next in line for the throne if the emperor should be assassinated, captured by barbarians or deposed by his Praetorian Guard. He'd make a pretty good emperor, sort of like Vespasian.
Dominic Perry is an expert in Egyptian history and author of the History of Egypt Podcast that tells the story of Aegyptus from the creation until the Fall of Rome. You can also chat on his History of Egypt facebook page about all the latest research and news. Highly recommended!
Jae Sung Park has an MA in Ancient History from Auckland University. His dissertation was on Liqian, the famous Roman city of China. He fights as an auxiliary Syrian sagittarius (archer) using his powerful recurve bow to pin-cushion the hapless enemy.
Brad Stevens is a devoted student of Roman history, and interested in everything, from ancient Exekias to ROME: Total War.
Peter Rogers (Lucius Petronius Longus) - our Centurion and chief Gladiator trainer. He is an engineer and smith who makes our Gladiator helms and armour. He fights in all gladiatorial styles, but often as a retiarius with net and trident, or scissor with a blood spurting blade!
Martin Layzell (Marius Petronius Dacius) is ex-NZ Territorial army and has an interest in most things military, especially WWI. Over the last 13 years, Martin has been in 3 Roman army groups as both Optio and acting Centurion. He and his sparring partner Peter Rogers were the 3rd & 4th graduates of the NZ Gladiator School. Fighting as Glaucus the Grey, he has displayed as a retiarius, hoplomachus and thraex. He enjoys the discipline and organisation of the Roman army.
Lisa Clark (Julia Flavia) has a MA in Archaeology and Anthropology (ALM 1991) from Harvard University.
Our Domina is also our much loved mater castrorum (camp mother) who works tirelessly to organise events, prepare Roman feasts, shoot nice photography, and as a registered nurse soothe any hurts.
John Nagels (Dominum Gaius Falco) was the first ever graduate of the NZ Gladiator School.
After many years service in the Roman Army he is now a distinguished Roman senator that also presides as our Emperor for religious duties at official ceremonies.
Dianne Layzell provides photography, video, logistical support and cucumber sandwiches (it's true!!!).
Brent Ruijne (Brenticus) has been a Roman re-enactor for over 15 years and featured on the front cover of the NZ Herald's Canvas magazine in 2006 (above). He has a wealth of knowledge on all things Roman.
Darren Green fights as a secutor gladiator, Darius of Gaul, in the Roman arena. A formidably skilled fighter, he also has the strength, endurance and sheer bloody-minded determination to run the New Plymouth half-marathon while wearing the added weight of full Roman armor as pictured above!
Leslie Viljoen is a software developer and computer games enthusiast who marches as a Roman legionary for Leg VI Ferrata. Here he demonstrates the gladius straight stab! (Camera-person step back!)