By Oscar Wilde, adapted for the stage by Nicki Bloom
What kind of King would you be? A naïve boy raised by goatherds is discovered to be heir to the kingdom. Treasures and privileges are laid at his feet, but at what cost to others?
The achingly beautiful and tender language of Oscar Wilde joins the intimate and magical world of internationally acclaimed Adelaide theatre company, Slingsby. Journey in wonder, to a land of challenging choices and rich rewards.
“In his tale The Young King, Oscar Wilde employs his trademark alluringly ornate language to draw us into a story that forces us to confront our notions of beauty, leadership and compassion. First published in Oscar Wilde’s A House of Pomegranates alongside the much loved The Selfish Giant and The Happy Prince, Slingsby is thrilled to bring the lesser known The Young King to new audiences.” Andy Packer, Artistic Director, Slingsby.
A cleverly staged immersive entry process brings the audience into the world of the show and casts the audience as the people of the kingdom.
The Young King tells the story of a young boy born to a princess and a poor woodland man. Snatched from his parents as a baby, the Young King is raised by a kindly goatherd in a deep forest. Years pass and the old King, father of the princess, nears the end of his life. The old king calls for the boy to be brought to the palace; there he tells him, “You are not a young goatherd, you are my grandson the Young King and heir to my throne”.
On the eve of his coronation, the Young King has three dreams from which he awakes, saddened. He shuns the costly robe, sceptre and crown he had demanded and reaches instead for his humble goatherd’s cloak and staff and a circlet of briar thorns for his head.
His courtiers beseech him: “How shall the people know you are King?” The townsfolk laugh, then grow angry: “Don’t you know, from your luxury comes our living?” In turmoil, the Young King walks away from the palace to where the forest begins. And as the woodland welcomes him, he feels his heart and his step lighten. He turns to face the people and the sunlight beams down and weaves about him a robe brighter than gold, and his staff blossoms with lilies whiter than pearls, and his circlet of briar blooms with roses redder than rubies. And then he, and all the world around, know he is King.
*Relaxed Performances are for anyone who would benefit from a more relaxed environment in the theatre. There is a relaxed attitude to noise; and lights, while dimmed, remain on throughout the performance.
Click here for the relaxed performance guide.
“Beyond the immaculate work of each and every performer, everything from the music, to the props, to the artwork was, in and of itself, a work of immense beauty ... It is moving, affecting storytelling that has to be experienced to be understood. A beautiful experience for all ages, The Young King offers twists and turns to a raw and beautiful end. A must-see piece of immersive theatre.” Trev
“That is the kind of show that ... grabs your soul. That will stay with me for a long time.” Audience member, Pittsburgh, USA
Image by Andy Ellis
Recommended for children aged 8 years and older.
This show contains supernatural and adult themes, haze and smoke.
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Presented by QPAC
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Children under 3 are free on the knee
A transaction fee of $7.20 applies per transaction. Selected ticket delivery methods may incur an additional charge. The minimum price listed may be available for selected performances only. Please see the event calendar when booking for the available date(s) and time(s) of this performance.
INFORMATION FOR TEACHERS
RECOMMENDED FOR: Years 3 to 12
Comprehensive educational support materials and resources for students in Years 3 to 12 are available for teachers to use in their classrooms. These can be downloaded from the Slingsby website.