The Peasant Prince

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The Peasant Prince

A story of courage, resilience and unwavering hope.

Monkey Baa is thrilled to announce our award-winning production of 'The Peasant Prince' for the National Tour 2024.

The children’s version of Li Cunxin’s iconic autobiography, Mao’s Last Dancer, The Peasant Prince is an extraordinary production of a remarkable story – of a peasant boy turned dance giant. It will inspire and enthral young audiences.

The Peasant Prince tells the remarkable true story of a 10-year-old peasant boy’s journey from impoverished rural China to the international dance scene. This is a story of courage, resilience and unwavering hope.

Li, a 10-year old peasant boy is plucked from his village in rural China and sent to a ballet academy in the big city. He leaves everything and everyone he loves, including his family. Over years of gruelling training, this boy transforms from an impoverished peasant to a giant of the international dance scene.  Li’s courage, resilience and unwavering hope for a better life for himself and his family makes The Peasant Prince a story to ignite our own aspirations to be the best person we can be.

Monkey Baa's extraordinary production won Best Production at The Glugs and The Sydney Theatre Awards and a Drover's Award for the Best Tour in 2016.
Based on the book by Li Cunxin, Illustrated by Anne Spudvilas
Adapted for the stage by Eva Di Cesare, Sandie Eldridge and Tim McGarry
Photos by Heidrun Lohr
  • Venue NSW, VIC, QLD, NT, ACT
  • Dates May - September
  • Duration 60 minutes, no interval
  • Ages Ages 7-12
  • Years Years 2-6
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National Tour

  • NSW

    Penrith
    Q Theatre, Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre 11 May – 13 May, 2024
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    Belrose
    Glen Street Theatre 16 May – 18 May, 2024
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    Parramatta
    Riverside Parramatta 21 May – 22 May, 2024
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    Wollongong
    Illawarra Performing Arts Centre 03 Sep – 04 Sep, 2024
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    Nowra
    Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre 06 Sep 2024
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    Wagga Wagga
    Wagga Wagga Civic Theare 09 Sep – 10 Sep, 2024
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    Orange
    Orange Civic Theatre 12 Sep 2024
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    Griffith
    Griffith Regional Theatre 16 Sep 2024
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    Wyong
    The Art House Wyong 19 Sep – 20 Sep, 2024
    Coming Soon
    Taree
    Manning Entertainment Centre 24 Sep 2024
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  • NT

    Darwin
    Darwin Entertainment Centre 27 May – 28 May, 2024
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  • QLD

    Cairns City
    Cairns Performing Arts Centre 04 Jun 2024
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    Rockhampton City
    Pilbeam Theatre 06 Jun – 07 Jun, 2024
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    Mackay
    Mackay Entertainment and Convention Centre 10 Jun – 11 Jun, 2024
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    Logan Central
    Logan Entertainment Centre 14 Jun 2024
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    Bundaberg Central
    Moncrieff Entertainment Centre 18 Jun 2024
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  • VIC

    Mildura
    Mildura Arts Centre 23 Jul 2024
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    Wangaratta
    Wangaratta Performing Arts & Convention Centre 25 Jul – 26 Jul, 2024
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    Bendigo
    The Capital 30 Jul 2024
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    Warrnambool
    Lighthouse Theatre 01 Aug 2024
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    Colac
    Colac Otway Performing Arts & Cultural Centre 06 Aug 2024
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    Geelong
    Geelong Arts Centre 08 Aug 2024
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    Frankston
    Frankston Arts Centre 13 Aug 2024
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    Hamilton
    Hamilton Performing Arts Centre 15 Aug – 16 Aug, 2024
    Coming Soon
    Narre Warren
    Bunjil Place 19 Aug – 20 Aug, 2024
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    Bairnsdale
    Forge Theatre and Arts Hub 22 Aug – 23 Aug, 2024
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    Shepparton
    Riverlinks Venues 27 Aug 2024
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  • ACT

    Canberra
    Canberra Theatre Centre 30 Aug – 31 Aug, 2024
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Education Program Extras
Compliment your students learning and enhance their engagement by adding on our additional resources, available with all school-group bookings. Email alex@monkeybaa.com.au to find out more.
The Peasant Prince Workshops

Join Li on his adventure from China to the international dance scene with engaging drama games and activities as you explore the themes and world of The Peasant Prince, based on Mao’s Last Dancer.

Our dynamic workshops empower students to build courage through creativity while developing skills across all areas of theatre making. Workshops can be tailored to suit all students’ needs, abilities and areas of study. 

Our experienced Teaching Artist will visit your school and run the workshop in the classroom. Watch as your students build confidence and explore their creativity in an experience they will never forget.

Click here for more information, or email alex@monkeybaa.com.au to organise a workshop at your school

Suitable for | Years 2 - 6

Duration | 60mins

Learning Pack

Our learning pack follows Li Cunxin’s journey from China to the international dance scene and the story of the play, providing historical context, with activities for your classroom. Designed for students in years 4, 5 and 6, the pack includes activities for Drama, Art, English, and History, with links to the Australian Curriculum. 

Click Here to access our e-Learning Pack, or email alex@monkeybaa.com.au to find out more.

Q&A Sessions

All Education Performances at ARA Darling Quarter Theatre will be concluded with a Question and Answer session with the cast of The Peasant Prince. Students are invited to talk and interact with the artists, and will hear about the unique perspectives our artists have of the story and the creative process.

Creative Team

Co-Adaptor

Eva Di Cesare

Co-Adaptor

Sandie Eldridge

Co-Adaptor

Tim McGarry

Director

Tim McGarry

Associate Director

Egan Sun-Bin

Production Designer

Michael Hankin

Composer

Daryl Wallis

Movement Director

Danielle Micich

Remount Movement Director

Lia Reutens

Lighting Designer

Sian James-Holland

Remount Lighting Designer

Matt Cox

Author and Script Consultant

Li Cunxin

Production Photographer

Clare Hawley

Reviews
“It’s a vivid piece of storytelling that is skillful, theatrical and inspiring. It was a loving and honest adaptation of Li’s treasured memoir." — Stage Whispers

"The Peasant Prince is vital, exuberant, aspirational, and inspirational."

Australian Stage

"Monkey Baa Theatre Company has created another wonderful work for children."

Broadway World

"My son was entranced and my daughter was mesmerised. I was drawn in by the magical telling of a powerful story told so simply and so well."

Sydney Arts Guide

"Monkey Baa has created, yet again, a gem for children and adults alike."

Theatre Now

Accessibility

Wheelchair Accessible
Contact us for more details about wheelchair and companion positions in the theatre
National Relay Service
If you are d/Deaf, or have a hearing or speech impairment, contact us through the National Relay Service.
Assisted Listening
Assisted listening devices are available in the theatre.

Acknowledgements

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