Sydney Theatre Company (STC) / White Pearl / 2019

STC has a proud heritage as a creative hub and incubator for Australian theatre-makers. Through a number of different programs, they provide professional development opportunities, access to key personnel and resources, and encouragement and support of emerging talent in the industry.

White Pearl by Anchuli Felicia King, a young Asian-Australian, is a ruthless entertaining portrait of toxic corporate culture, casual racism and the complexity of pan-Asian relations. As the team at ‘Clearday’ scrambles to contain the fallout from a leaked TV commercial gone viral for all the wrong reasons, the open-plan, glass-door office proves to be a nest of secrets, lies and resentments.

White Pearl was presented as part of STC’s 2019 main stage season. This new Australian work was developed by Playwriting Australia and is a co-production with the National Theatre of Parramatta (NToP), broadening STC’s audience reach by being accessible to audiences currently under-represented at the company’s harbour side venues. Based on its success the co-operation between the two theatres will continue.

Another main objective was creating a platform for new voices and artists with diverse backgrounds. Casting was culturally-specific as the script detailed the ethnic and cultural background of each character. 20 artists and creatives worked on this highly energetic production, directed by Priscilla Jackman. For six of the cast members, White Pearl marked their STC’s main stage debut.

The play received extremely positive reviews from audiences and critics alike. The cast was voted ‘Best Ensemble’ at the 2019 Sydney Theatre Awards.

White Pearl was then performed as part of the 2021 OzAsia Festival in Adelaide (some new cast members) and will return to the STC Main Stage at the Wharf in 2022.

The Girgensohn Foundation was the ‘Supporting Outreach Patron’ for this play.