Opening Hours + IMPORTANT UPDATES here

Brisbane Powerhouse

Slow Boat

by Anna Yen

Thu 1 - Sat 10 Sep, 2022


Powerhouse Theatre

Adult $45*
Concession $39*
School Group $29*

*plus transaction fee $6.90


Week 1 (01 Sep–04 Sep):

Thu (Preview) 7.30pm
Fri 7.30pm
Sat + Sun 6pm

Week 2 (06 Sep–10 Sep):

Tue 7.30pm
Wed 11am + 7.30pm
Thu-Sat 7.30pm


2 hrs (incl. interval)

Ages + Warnings

Suitable for ages 12+
Contains adult themes, coarse language, theatrical haze, violence, racial slurs + depictions of suicide

Presented by Brisbane Festival, Brisbane Powerhouse and Playlab Theatre

Part of

Brisbane Festival

From wartime China to the Bulimba Dockyards, brotherhood and resilience is tested. 

To celebrate victory in the Pacific at the end of World War II, six Chinese workers stage a theatre show at Brisbane’s Bulimba Dockyards. However, differing perspectives of critical events in their story threaten to derail this display of unity and become the one thing that could tear them apart. 

The men weave an epic tale of brotherhood and resilience, charting their journey from poverty and war in rural China, through hard work on Nauru island, then a hasty escape from the Japanese to Australia, and all the challenges they overcome on the way. 

Blending vaudeville, musical theatre, circus, Cantonese Opera and martial arts, Slow Boat is a play within a play, inspired by the unexpected arrival in Australia of playwright Anna Yen’s father, along with 580 other Chinese men, during WWII. 

Image by Justine Walpole and Sean Dowling.


Schools booking link here

Thu 08 Sep 7.30pm show is Auslan interpreted.

Wed 07 Sep 11am + Thu 08 Sep 7.30pm shows will be followed with a 20 min Q & A session.

Playlab Theatre seeks to challenge perspectives of Australian Culture through Australian Theatre. Uniquely, Playlab Theatre does this through developing, publishing and producing new Australian Theatre with playwrights at the centre of the creative process.


Playwright: Anna Yen
Director/Dramaturg: Ian Lawson
Ensemble Director: Therese Collie
Musician: Anna Kho, Ziwei Wang
Movement Director: Anna Yen
Choreographer: Neridah Waters
Musical Director & Composer: Nicholas Ng
Designer: Josh McIntosh
Lighting Designer: David Walters
Costume Designer: Frances Foo
Backdrop Artist: Echo Wu
Stage Manager: Nicola Jones
Assistant Stage Manager: Tiff Lane & Meiyu See

Julian Wong
Silvan Russ
Jonathon Chan
Ming Yang Lim
Nicholas Ng
Egan Sun-Bin


Share Print

Share Print


We acknowledge the Jagera/Turrbal peoples, the First Nation Traditional Owners of the land on which we gather. We pay respects to all Elders past and present and acknowledge the young leaders who are working beside our Elders in our cultural industries. We recognise all First Nation peoples as the original storytellers of these lands and acknowledge the important role they continue to play in our community.

Home What's on Slow Boat


Yagara Country,
119 Lamington St,
New Farm QLD 4005

View map

(07) 3358 8622

Site created by Nick Did This + Flip Optimised by Bambrick Media
© 2022 Brisbane Powerhouse