Published on June 17th, 2021 | by Andrew Bistak

Celebrated Australian author’s magical tale comes to life on Arts Centre Melbourne stage

At our beach, at our magic beach…

Every year, an everyday family go on a beach holiday.

This isn’t just any beach – it’s Magic Beach, where everything you can imagine becomes real.

But this year is different. As the eldest child begins to grow up, does she have to leave the magic behind?

Alison Lester AM’s
much-loved children’s book Magic Beach comes to life on Arts Centre Melbourne’s Playhouse stage in a wonderful world of text, song, light, shadow and movement from 24 – 28 November 2021.

This new Australian adaptation from multi-award winning playwright Finegan Kruckemeyer is a celebration of the power of the imagination and the differences that make every child uniquely special. It is brought to stage by prolific Australian children’s theatremakers CDP Kidsthe team behind The Gruffalo, The Gruffalo’s Child, The 13-, 26-, 52-, 78- and 91-Storey Treehouses and David Walliams’ The Midnight Gang among other beloved productions.

Magic Beach is the story of an everyday family who go on a beach holiday every year. It isn’t just any beach– it’s Magic Beach, where everything you can imagine becomes real. But this year is different. As the eldest child begins to grow up, does she have to leave the magic behind?

Playing the eldest child Sally is Kate Betcher, whose television and screen credits include Home and Away, The Other Guy (Stan), Ladies In Black (dir. Bruce Beresford) and In Like Flynn (dir. Russell Mulcahy). Alex Packard (Monkey Baa’s Possum Magic, Sydney Festival Alice In Wonderland) plays sweet and sensitive Danny and Jade Fuda (Blue Whale Theatre’s A Bright Light In The Darkness, Fingerless Theatre’s Just Short Break on a Hafgufa, A Midsummer Night’s DreamThe Tempest) plays exuberant Lucy, the youngest of the siblings.

Alison Lester has been delighting younger readers – and their parents – for more than 30 years with her beautiful illustrated children’s picture books and Magic Beach is the first to be adapted for stage. Lester was the Children’s Laureate from 2011 – 2013 and was one of the 5 Australian Legends of Children’s Literature that Australia Post featured on a stamp.

“Alison Lester’s gorgeous book, Magic Beach, is a celebration of imagination that we knew would be the perfect for the stage. We are so thrilled that this story that has been loved by generations will come to life at Arts Centre Melbourne,” said CDP Kids Director, Yolande White.


Arts Centre Melbourne presents a CDP Kids production
Magic Beach
A play by Finegan Kruckemeyer Based on the book by Alison Lester

24 – 28 November 2021 | Playhouse
Age Recommendation: 3 – 8 years
Running Time: 55 minutes (no interval)
Tickets: Premium $39.00, A Reserve $32.00, B Reserve $27.00

Performance Dates & Times
Wednesday 24 November – 10:00am
Thursday 25 November – 10:00am, 3:00pm
Friday 26 November – 10:00am, 12:00pm
Saturday 27 November – 10:00am, 12:00pm, 3:00pm
Sunday 28 November – 10:00am*, 12:00pm    *Auslan interpreted performance

Creative Team
Book Author  / Adaptation Consultant: Alison Lester
Playwright / Adaptor: Finegan Kruckemeyer
Director: Liesel Badorrek
Set/Costume/Puppet Designer: Isla Shaw
Composer/Sound Designer: Gail Priest
Lighting Designer: Nicholas Higgins
Company Stage Manager: Sharna Galvin

For more information visit  

About the Author

When he's not trying to save the world, Andrew enjoys travel (although loathes turbulence), going to the movies, reading and being a dad to his two dogs (and now twins) with his wife.

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