In January 1788, the first of the British prison ships arrive at Botany Bay, Australia and settle the penal colony at Port Jackson, the site of current-day Sydney. Many of the prisoners have committed minor crimes and their wardens are military men who fought and lost the war against the American colonies.
When hope and supplies run low, a lieutenant tries to increase morale by staging a comedy using the convicts as the cast.
Based on the novel “The Playmaker” by Thomas Keneally.
Based on real events, this award-winning drama is an evocative look at a moment in history — the founding of a nation — and an inspiring tale about the transforming power of theatre.
Recommended for high school and up. Contains strong language and brief nudity.