Play A Thousand Cranes. This touring version has been performed
world-wide and inspired young people to strive for peace.
Thousand Cranes is the Winner of a
National Endowment for the Arts Playwriting Award.
Theatre for Young Audiences:
Great Plays for Children, Coleman Jennings
John F. Kennedy Center in Washington DC.
of an Ohio Arts Council Playwriting Award.
tremendously moving piece..."
and Play Review
Cranes is the moving, true story about the effects of war on the life
of a 12-year-old girl, told in strikingly simple, but strongly theatrical
Riven, Center of Contemporary Arts, St. Louis
Wild Swan Theatre, MI
play is deeply spiritual. The message is that hope rises from the
ashes of tragedy."
Dori Baker, Washington Post
Children's Festival, Singapore
cannot recommend this piece highly enough."
Higgins, KDHX 88.1 FM, St. Louis
is such a well-done, wonderful script that is really appropriate for
so many different age groups. Some of the schools brought
kindergarten classes and teachers said that the kids were mesmerized."
Katy Brown, Barter Theatre, Abington, VA
Thousand Cranes is a play about connecting to the past in order to
see the present more clearly."
Catholic Mom in Hawaii"
Jeffery Matthews has fashioned a moving presentation out of very
simple materials: four actors, a basic set, and a few simple props.
Sadako sees her grandmother again and flies on a crane's back to
heaven, an illusion beautifully realized."
Boslaugh, TalkinBroadway, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
Cranes for Professional Theatres
Syracuse Stage Company, NY
Thousand Cranes is one of those rare experiences that teaches you
what theatre for young audiences, in its highest form, is all about."
Murphy, for the Ohio Arts Councilil.
Cranes is an extraordinary
departure from children's theatre as usual. This play may be staged
with a few simple props and unlimited imagination. The result is
always elegant and moving.
Youngest Audiences are Spellbound
Syracuse Stage Company, NY
Thousand Cranes is one of the most moving pieces of American
playwriting I have ever had the privilege of experiencing, It has a
timely theme and universal appeal. It
obvious why it has won so many awards and hearts."
Suzanne Larson, Artistic
Director - Lady's Island Dinner Theatre
Cranes is the true and poignant story of
Sadako Sasaki, a young victim of the Hiroshima atomic bomb disaster.
Stella Adler Academy, Los Angeles, CA
was only two years old when the bomb
fell and seemed to be unharmed, but at twelve she was diagnosed with
"radiation sickness" an aftermath of the bomb's effects.
With boundless optimism,
she takes an old story to heart: If a sick person folds a thousand
paper origami cranes the gods will grant her wish and make her well
again. She begins to fold her thousand cranes.
Folds Her Thousand Cranes
Repertory Theatre St. Louis --
Hexagon Theatre, So Africa
Sadako is able to
complete her task, she is visited by her Grandmother who lovingly
carries her on the back of a glorious crane...
Powerful Story for Young Audiences
Highly Acclaimed Production by
the Honolulu Theatre for Youth
the land of a thousand, thousand spirits. There
she joins her ancestors and learns that her true wish may be granted.
Theatre for Children
Cranes, Lexington Children's
friends and classmates finished
They folded enough cranes to
make a thousand...
Message of Peace in the World
Barter Theatre, VA - Adventure Stage, Chicago
children in Japan and all over the world
fold a thousand cranes and lay them at the feet of Sadako's statue in
the Hiroshima Peace Park. Their wish is engraved at the bottom of the monument:
is our cry, This is our prayer, Peace in the world"
Simple -- Strongly Theatrical"
Professional Theatre for Young Audiences
one precise, economical line, the playwright frees Sadako from her
task, shifts emphasis from an individual child to the greater
community, and expands the story's scope from sustaining a single
life to that of a global effort toward peace. "It is
better," says her grandmother," for others to finish the cranes."
Joseph T. Rozmiarek, The
Message is Hope"
Second Youth Theatre, Austin, TX
- Asian Children's Festival, Singapore
is an extraordinary opportunity to share in a multicultural
experience that has wowed family audiences throughout America."
Stephanie Riven, Center of
Contemporary Arts, St. Louis
TenEyck, Set Design, Indianapolis Repertory Theatre
3 Versions of
A Thousand Cranes:
Version (this page)
Cast of 3,
for Adult Actors.
Schools & High Schools
Cast of 13 for grades 6-12
(4m, 4f, 5m/f)
For Primary School Students
Flexible Cast of 17-38, grades
Elementary Schools, Middle
Schools, Parents, Teachers, Families, Community
1m, 2f, larger cast possible
About 45 minutes
Dramatic Publishing Co.
& Performance License Required
Are you looking for a version of this play that you can perform with
your students? Cast size 30+, adapted for young performers.