New York | 1h 20m | Already closed

The Young King

From 12 critic and 8 member reviews
Members say: Enchanting, Entertaining, Delightful, Absorbing, Clever

About the show

The New Victory Theater presents Slingby's adaptation of Oscar Wilde's parable, which uses interactive stagecraft, puppetry, and live music to immerse you in an otherworldly kingdom. More…

Welcome, royal citizens! Industrious Denizens of the South, Rough Fisher-folk of the North, Gritty Prospectors of the West, Gruff Forest-folk of the East—have you a gift? Prepare for the coronation of the Young King! Experience The New Victory in a completely new way when the theater itself is transformed from entry to exit for this enchanting and epic story. Greet the newly crowned Young King, explore on foot the riches of the land, and take pleasure as you see, touch, and discover the magic and mystery of beautiful things! Recommended for ages 8 and up.

1h 20m | Already closed | The New Victory Theater (Midtown W)

Front Mezz Junkies

“'The Young King' gave us an opportunity to discuss privilege, power, responsibility in a context to which (children) can relate...There was nothing saccharine or simple about the production...It asked a lot of the audience, it did not spoon-feed or pander to the lowest common denominator...My one criticism of the experience as a whole is that gifts enchant the children - it undermines the imaginative nature of the show...The show was gift enough.” Full Review

The Mama Maven

"Definitely a unique experience we will never forget!...Although the story is easy to follow, some of the language is a bit complex for kids...This unique and inventive show really makes you feel like you are part of what’s going on. Together with a thought-provoking story, it’s hands-down an irresistible combination. While the show is not preachy in any way, it does instill an important lesson that the audience will think about long after the show is over." Full Review


for a previous production "An enchanting adaptation...The entire visual aspect of this production is sensational, and just you wait for the final reveal...Overton's performance is superb and memorable, but this production relies on the combined efforts of all concerned...It takes the efforts of all of these elements, the visual side as well as all of the excellent performances, to make this an entertaining and rewarding production...Everybody concerned deserves commendation...A magical tale, beautifully told." Full Review

Limelight Magazine (AU)

for a previous production "Packer grants audiences access to the characters, giving them an immersive experience before the scripting has begun in earnest. It’s a clever device to ensure investment in the action, and a joy to observe...The hopeful, magisterial and sometimes sinister original compositions add a grace and subtlety to the drama with great effect...Bloom’s adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s short story is excellent...The attention to detail is phenomenal...Charming, majestic, and utterly delightful." Full Review

Adelaide University Union (AU)

for a previous production "Superb for children but never belittling, the production balances deftly between the safety of a child’s party and the unknown world beyond it...Bloom faithfully weaves Wilde’s lyrical prose into the production...Spoken aloud, the play’s words are smooth and silken, rich like the king’s tissued robe...In this production we do not sit back watching a king’s story unfold. We actively take part in the drama...A touching, meaningful and involved production." Full Review

The Guardian (UK)

for a previous production "The short story may be dressed as a whimsical jaunt, but it carries political bite...Very much a show for the young and young-at-heart...Object theatre and shadow puppetry transport us to wherever we need to be...Your enjoyment of the production will depend on your imagination – if you’re older than 12 and find whimsy cloying, you probably aren’t meant to be there...Thankfully the story itself is simple enough, and finishes wrapped with a tidy bow." Full Review

INDAILY (Australia)

for a previous production "Will appeal to both old and young...This story forces audience members to examine their own values...Glass founded Slingsby with a vision to create high-quality and emotive theatre experiences that an audience of both adults and young people can share. They’ve certainly accomplished that with this visceral and touching play, which features powerful and memorable performances...Expect to move from greeting room, to the coronation....and feel like a participant, not a spectator." Full Review

The Advertiser

for a previous production "Children are the target audience but like all Slingsby’s work this has wide appeal. Bloom’s script is central. Faithful to Wilde, it leaves plenty of room for Packer to present the story in word and image...They’re perfect together — Overton the fresh-faced young king, Phillips fabulously grim when needed...Grant contributes a thoroughly gorgeous, specially written score...There are twists and turns...The story ventures into darkness. In the end, art and nature hold the answer." Full Review

ArtsHub (AU)

for a previous production "Wilde’s fairy tale is brought to vivid life in this inventive new production...Entering the theatre space...feels like entering another world...Retains some of Wilde’s lush language while expanding on other aspects of the story...An elegant and affecting work of storytelling...Not every aspect of the production entirely succeeds, but Packer’s direction maintains an engaging and smooth-flowing pace, and deftly balances light and shade...A beautiful production for audiences aged eight to 80." Full Review

Sydney Morning Herald

for a previous production "Slingsby created a kid-friendly wonderland...The winsome, interactive production of Oscar Wilde's fable follows a goat herder on the road to his coronation after he learns of his royal birthright. Using simple yet greatly effective visual devices, along with original music, director Andy Packer creates an immersive, otherworldly show, punctured with serious life lessons in the form of Wilde's words warning of the perils of avarice." Full Review

The Barefoot Review

for a previous production "The story is of absolute relevance today...Wilde's short story is given the kiss of life through Packer's application of theatrical magic...Grant entices a delightful score from the piano, and you are in the court of the incorporeally haunt a palace...Yet in the opening scenes, the young king is such a nice guy, his avarice for fine things is dulled. This is no Scrooge-like transformation. And the final imagery of transformation was rushed and not well established." Full Review

Daily Review

for a previous production "This show didn’t achieve lift-off for me, despite some fine atmospheric music and an ambitious production and design concept...It feels like a sententious and cumbersome pastiche...The staging and performances, which seemed mostly stuck at the level of recitation...Failed to tap into that archetypal layer which is the essential foundation for all fairy-tales fairy-tales, myths, legends and stories about kings and prophets – or to find a theatrical form in which to express it." Full Review

Absorbing, Clever, Delightful, Enchanting, Entertaining

See it if you have kids who like enchanting theatre.

Don't see it if if you don't like children's theatre.

Absorbing, Clever, Delightful, Enchanting, Entertaining

See it if you have children who enjoy clever theater crafts and beautiful images

Don't see it if your child is younger than 8 years old.


See it if You like a simple morality tale. Wilde's short story is enjoyable for children and adults. The activities before the show were sweet.

Don't see it if aN

Delightful, Enchanting, Confusing, Great writing, Slow

See it if you enjoy the magic and the language of Oscar Wilde stories; have kids and would like an immersive theater experience

Don't see it if you do not appreciate traditional story-telling or get bored with slow paced stories

Great acting, Great staging, Intelligent

See it if you love Oscar Wilde.

Don't see it if you want superficial entertainment.

Entertaining, Relevant, Disappointing, Sweet

See it if Your kids are 6-10 or thereabouts and have the patience to be told a rambling story with engaging lead-in activities and good narration.

Don't see it if You actually want your kids to come away with a sense of the human cost of luxury goods and a yearning to be better people.

Also The changes they've made to the Wilde story were a little shocking to ... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Entertaining, Great acting

See it if you have children and want them to see a play with good messages. Nicely staged, children watch a young person mature.

Don't see it if you want a more developed drama. This is for children's shorter attention span. Children will also get to make paper crowns b4 show begins.

Disappointing, Seemed too long and dreary for kids, Disjointed charm

See it if Want a little peek bkstge of a big theatre, have kids 7-8, think all kids' theatre worth seeing.

Don't see it if You're ok w a lot of death, strange lighting, tiny hard-to-see puppets, a too-long morality tale, poor direction.

Also I was expecting soooo much more from the descriptions. There were atte... Read more Read less

Cast & Creatives (10)