Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search


Chinese Fable Thrown Bottom First into the Present

Cheeky Theatre Show Throws Chinese Fable Bottom First into the Present

A unique theatre show aimed at audiences ages seven and up, Chinese fable The Two Farting Sisters premieres at the Wellington Fringe this February 17 - 21 before heading to Auckland’s Lantern Festival and the Auckland Fringe February 24 to March 7.

Blending live action with 3D and shadow puppetry, The Two Farting Sisters is by New Zealand theatre company Petit Workshop, who have worked with local playwright Renee Liang to reinvigorate a traditional Chinese fable, The Tale of The Fragrant Farting Man, throwing it bottom first into present day New Zealand.

In The Two Farting Sisters, audiences will be transported from the quiet streets of Levin with its verdant market gardens to the hustle and bustle of metropolitan Auckland. Two feisty sisters go head to head in a story of pure delight and pungent comedy, where cats drive tractors and passing wind can be as fragrant as a puff of perfume.

Premiering around Chinese New Year, The Two Farting Sisters is created by an all-female cast with puppets hand-made by the performers especially for this show.

Playfully exploring themes of multiculturalism, modernity, generosity and love, with a whiff of business and the current property boom in New Zealand, the show celebrates classic Kiwi ingenuity with a bit of a twist.

To see a Chinese story adapted for the New Zealand stage and made accessible to young audiences is a rare treat. We hope that everyone comes to enjoy it.” says The Two Farting Sisters’ director Ella Becroft.

Along with fantastic entertainment, entrancing visuals and great on-stage music, we hope that the show will also finally air out the taboo topic of female flatulence! It’s not silent, and it really isn’t that bad.”

Ella Becroft is a Chapman Tripp Award-winning performer, theatre and film director. Her previous work as a Red Leap Theatre company member saw her devise and perform the multi-awarding winning productions The Arrival and Sea. She has directed numerous productions, and built and puppeteered puppets for Auckland Theatre Company, Theatre Stampede and Red Leap Theatre.

The Two Farting Sisters premieres at the Wellington Fringe Festival at BATS Theatre where it will run alongside Renee Liang’s show Under the Same Moon. Both shows will then travel to Auckland for a season at the Musgrove Studio in the Maidment Theatre as part of Lantern Festival and the Auckland Fringe Festival.

Tickets can be purchased for both or just one show, with a discounted price available for both shows purchased together.

Redemptive, contemporary and beautifully fable-like, The Two Farting Sisters will entrance audiences young and old, and inspire the inner child in each of us to let rip.


Actors Katrina Wesseling (Nothing Trivial), Xana Tang (Hounds, The Almighty Johnsons), theatre actor Alisha Lawrie Paul and Emma Newborn (Best Actress, Short+Sweet) will work alongside director Ella Becroft to bring the magic of The Two Farting Sisters to audiences.

Musician Adam Ogle (Giant Teeth, Uncle Minotaur) will perform original music live on stage throughout the show’s run.

For further details and bios of the performers:



New Zealand Fringe Festival 2015

BATS Theatre, 1 Kent Terrace

7pm February 17 - 21

Matinee: 4pm Saturday 21

Book online or call (04) 802 4175


Chinese Lantern Festival & Auckland Fringe Festival 2015

Musgrove Studio, Maidment Theatre, 8 Alfred St

6pm Feb 24 - Mar 7

Matinees: 2pm Feb 28, Mar 1 & 7

Book online / or call (09) 308 2383


$18 Adult / $14 Concession

$12 children aged 15 and under

Group discounts available

Two-show pass for The Two Farting Sisters and Under the Same Moon:

Wellington $24 (email Auckland: $26 (phone box office on (09) 308 2383


Download high resolution images:


Petit Theatre create original, devised work through incredible worlds made out of paper, light and shadow.

They use 3D puppetry, shadow puppetry and live action in a beautiful handmade aesthetic to play with scale and the magic of theatre to fire the audience’s imagination.

In each show, bespoke puppets and imagery are created to envelope the audience in the world of the story. In The Two Farting Sisters the company will use Chinese art and design in the show’s imagery and puppet design.

Petit Workshop formed in 2012 when a group of Auckland based performers with a passion for beautiful, handmade theatre united to create a piece for the Short+Sweet Festival. They performed The Soldier’s Heart & The Feathered Girl, winning Best Drama Script, Best Wild Card and People’s Choice at the festival’s Gala Finals.

Petit Workshop continued The Soldier’s Heart & The Feathered Girl at The Basement in October 2013 and with Red Leap Theatre’s Incubator programme.


Ella Becroft and Katrina Wesseling will run a free hour-long workshop on puppeteering and puppet making for children during the Auckland season of the show.

The workshop will be a fun and relaxed introduction to puppeteering focused on creating simple 3D puppets using paper. Children will explore movement and interaction and will create small scenes with their puppets.


The Two Farting Sisters is supported by:

Chinese Heritage Poll Tax Trust
Arts Alive - Auckland Council’s Performing Arts Funding Scheme
Creative New Zealand
The Asia New Zealand Foundation


Alice Berry Design
New Zealand Fringe Festival 2015
Auckland Lantern Festival 2015
Auckland Fringe Festival 2015
BATS Theatre, Wellington
Maidment Theatre, Auckland

- ENDS -

© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis: Emerald Fennell's Promising Young Woman'

The Guardian needed not one, but three reviews to do justice to Fennell's unsettling approach, which indicates exactly how ambiguous and controversial its message really is. More>>

Howard Davis: Jill Trevelyan's Rita Angus

Although Angus has become one of Aotearoa’s best-loved painters, the story of her life remained little known and poorly understood before Jill Trevelyan's acclaimed and revelatory biography, which won the Non Fiction Award at the Montana New Zealand Book Awards in 2009, and has now been republished by Te Papa press. More>>

Howard Davis: The Back of the Painting

Painting conservators are the forensic pathologists of the art world. While they cannot bring their subjects back to life, they do provide fascinating insights into the precise circumstances of a painting's creation, its material authenticity, and constructive methodology. More>>

Howard Davis: Black Panthers on the Prowl

A passionate and gripping political drama from Shaka King, this is an informative and instructive tale of human frailty that centers around the charismatic Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, who was murdered at the age of twenty-one during a police raid. More>>

Howard Davis: Controlling the High Ground

Stephen Johnson's raw and angry film not only poses important questions with scrupulous authenticity, but also provides a timely reminder of the genocidal consequences of casual bigotry and xenophobia. More>>

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>

Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland