The Ugliest Duckling

Q Theatre
Adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling
Directed By:
Nick Atkins
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A non-verbal adaptation of a classic story filled with heart and suitable for the


One by one the eggs break open. Except for one. This one is the biggest egg of all. The hens peck, the roosters crow and the ducks quack around the last duckling to break free from his egg. They’re not the fastest, not the strongest and definitely not the most popular. They try and try and try again. They tries until they can’t try anymore. Leaving the farm behind the Ugliest Duckling runs away and comes across a river. What they sees next is something they could never have imagined.

Exploring resilience, transformation and joy, Q Theatre’s adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling is a celebration of difference. It’s a small-scale story filled with spectacle and sounds that are suitable for the whole family. Don’t miss this brand new staging of a timeless classic.

Short Review


Technical Information

Technical Rating:
Touring Party:
Bump-in Time:
Bump-out Time:


Example lighting plan available on request.
Venue to supply
Standard LX stock, pending final design, in some cases when venue stock is very limited additional lamps may be required.
LX console


Playback of sound on QLab. Original season had 10 outputs. 4 speakers underneath the set, 2 on either side of stage, FOH, subs.
QLab versions for 10 channel output and 2 channel output.
Touring Company to supply QLab file
Venue to supply
PA system, console


Design Description
The set consists of a scaffolding structure that encompasses the world of the ducklings. The scaffolding was designed by Melanie Liertz in collaboration with Alejandro Rolandi of Strings Attached who is familiar with scaffolding structures that are safe to be performed on or climbed. He is also familiar with the capabilities of the cast members and confident in their ability to use the set responsibly.
The scaff perimeter is lined with pool noodles of various colours and sizes. Inside the world, coloured rostra create different levels and playing spaces. Connected to the rostra is a wooden pier that extends downstage. Underneath that a pink ball pond exists (starting the show empty and filled during the show)

Touring Company to supply
– Scaffolding pipe
– Couplers
– Rostra
– Rostra tops
– Barrels
– Pool noodles and bases
– Wooden chocks
– Pool edge
– Pink balls
– All props
– Ramps
– Astroturf
Venue to supply
– Numerous sandbags or stage weights
– Boom poles x4

Transport Notes

1-tonne truck and ute. Can not travel by plane.

Audience & Marketing Notes

This show is for anyone that’s felt a little odd or out of place. Especially young people that might be feeling that way at the moment. This performance plays with spectacle in its form and subject. By stripping away spoken word and focusing on music and motion, we create a world that’s dream-like and full of possibility. We want to capture the excitement and fear of arriving somewhere for the first time. The first day of school, the first day of swim class the first day you learn to drive a car.

We want the ducklings and audience to be sucked into a world that appears charming and encourages them to experience the deep kind of joy that makes someone vulnerable.

Selling Points

  • Bringing together theatre, dance and circus, The Ugliest Duckling is a reimagining of Hans Christian Andersen’s fable
  • Circus/music/dance - focus can pivot based on context
  • Classic and loved story
  • 50 minute duration
  • Accessible and flexible show for a wide range of young people. Our target age is 4 - 8 but is suitable for young people outside of this bracket and has been successful when presented to audiences living with a disability.




All ages, family friendly

Venue Format

Proscenium, thrust


50 Minutes

Available Until


Budget & Fees

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Remount: $8000

Weekly Sell Off: $14500

Per Performance: $0

Apra Obligations:


Technical Specifications

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