The Clown from Snowy River

The Clown from Snowy River

An energetic, hilarious exploration of the Australian national identity.

Inspired by his beloved Banjo Paterson, The Swagman sets out to stage his version of Australian history. His clown assistant Dazza, however, intends to shed new light on the past.

Together these two clowns (one Indigenous, one non-Indigenous) attempt to present the defining moments of Australian history, from Gallipoli to the Sydney Olympics, showcasing iconic Aussies from Ned Kelly to Kylie Minogue. Created with, and for, young people, The Clown from Snowy River is an entertaining, engaging and timely examination of reconciliation and the meaning of ‘sorry.’

With excellent cross curricular links to History and Social Studies, as well as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Perspectives, the performance also has rich textual and visual imagery for students to respond to.

“Learning about our past is critical if we are to participate actively in our future. The Clown from Snowy River is one such teaching tool that gives students opportunities to learn about their past, not in any didactic way, but in such a way that they are intrigued and eager for more knowledge. This is a must-see show…especially for SOSE and Drama.” —  Villanova College


Learning Areas
The Arts
Humanities and Social Sciences


General Capabilities
Intercultural Understanding
Critical and Creative Thinking

Cross-Curriculum Priorities
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures

Key Themes
Comedy, Clowning, Storytelling, Australian History, Identity and Culture, Reconcilliation

Accompanying Workshops

Cross Curriculum Collaboration

Inspired by  the performance visit this workshop provides professional development for generalist and non-arts specialist teachers. You will collaborate with a Flying Arts Artist to combine visual arts practice with a non-arts area of the curriculum, culminating in an artist-led workshop for your students.

Production Information

Duration: 1 hour including Q&A

Audience: Max 250 students per session

Presented by: QMF and debase

Writers: Bridget Boyle and Liz Skitch
Co-devised by: Jonathan Brand, Laurel Collins, Robert Kronk, Allen Laverty, Nadine Macdonald-Dowd and Mark Sheppard

Staging Requirements

  • Indoor Venue Preferred
  • 4m wide x 4m deep performance space
  • Access to power outlet

More Information

“debase have mounted a tour de force …” — Douglas Leonard, RealTime, May 2006

Recommended Grades

Versions available for:
Prep – 6
Year 5 – 10

Touring Areas
Term 1: Area A, B, and C
Term 2: Area D

Touring Region

Booking Information

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