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Story Of Autism Diagnosis To Theatrical Triumph Taking The Stage At TSB Showplace

A giant robot is at the heart of the critically acclaimed Australian theatre production about a young person overcoming social isolation, presented at NPDC’s TSB Showplace next month.

Robot Song draws on the personal experience and creative ingenuity of writer Jolyon James, who turned his journey with his son's autism into “Robot Song”, a heartwarming visual spectacle that explores the transformative power of creativity and unconditional love.

His powerful production challenging stereotypes around autism was inspired by a WALL-E style robot that he created with his son a few years back.

Described as a poignant reflection on parenting, the show will resonate with those who navigate the challenges of raising a child deemed 'different' or in need of extra support and offers a blueprint for young people like the lead character, Juniper, who learns that acceptance starts with self-acceptance.

James takes the audience on a journey from a personal video of a homemade robot to a full-fledged theatrical experience, featuring live animation, animatronics, puppetry, and photography.

The pinnacle of this show for all the family is the actual giant robot, built by James and his two sons in their backyard.

Sam Ryan, TSB Showplace Lead is excited to share the show with the community.

“We’ve got family passes available to make it easy and affordable for the whole whānau; we don’t want our community to miss out on a fun and educational show these school holidays!”

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Recommended for people six years of age and over, the show in the TSB Theatre at 10am and 2pm on 20 April.

Tickets available via Ticketek


  • NPDC owns and operates TSB Stadium, TSB Showplace and Bowl of Brooklands.
  • Around 52,000 use the TSB Showplace each year
  • New Plymouth and Napier are the only two New Zealand towns showing the production.
  • This is the first time the Australian theatre production has toured New Zealand.


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