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New ‘Peter Pan’ Set to Take Audiences on a Multicultural Journey

New 'Peter Pan' Set to Take Audiences on a Multicultural Journey
Credit: Disney/ Peterpanontour.com/ Canva

Think happy thoughts! That’s the gist that Sir J.M. Barrie portrayed to audiences when he put pen to paper in 1892, beginning work on his stage show, Peter Pan.

peter pan film

Credit: Walt Disney Animation

Produced in London and shown in 1904, the captivating show features Lost Boys, vile pirate captains, fairies, and more captivated audiences.

Since its conception, Peter Pan has seen numerous adaptations, most famously by The Walt Disney Company. Since it’s 1953 film, audiences have grown to adore Tinker Bell, Peter Pan, Wendy Darling, Tiger Lily, Captain Hook, and more.

Related: ‘Peter Pan’ to Replace ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ at Disney

Even outside of Disney, which has tried its own hand at live-action adaptations, the J.M. Barrie story has been produced several times, featuring familiar faces like Jude Law.

Although sometimes considered controversial, especially in the Disney representation, the idea of flying off to Neverland and forever being young has resonated with audiences for over a century, cementing Peter Pan as one of history’s great literary and stage works.

Peter Pan

Credit: Disney

Still, as the clock quickly turns, times are changing. As more and more directors, writers, and producers strive for representation in their projects, the on-stage version of this classic story is now on deck.

Heralded by playwright Larissa FastHorse, a new transformative take on Peter Pan is ready to take audiences on an all-inclusive journey in the United States.

Related: Growing Up Wrong: An Honest ‘Peter Pan & Wendy’ Review

According to BNN, this new adaptation of the popular stage show promises “a diverse and respectful narrative that resonates with audiences of all backgrounds.”

Director Lonny Price will guide this new look, incorporating ideas and progressive topics from modern society and introducing the likes of Captain Hook and other popular characters to a more “respective narrative.”

The concepts behind what we know as Peter Pan have been reworked in this modern adaptation, presenting a more sensitive look at the Darling children, pirates, and Native Americans.

Peter Pan & Wendy 2023 Disney Plus Jude Law Captian Hook Jim Gaffigan Mr. Smee

Credit: Disney+

Most notably, the original song, “Ugg-A-Wugg,” has been removed, while Fasthorse has reimagined characters like Tiger Lily and Wendy Darling.

According to BNN, “No longer mere satellites to Peter’s whims, these women now stand as independent forces who sing, dance, and fight, epitomizing strength and autonomy. The introduction of new songs and characters from diverse Indigenous cultures breathes fresh life into Neverland, ensuring that this magical realm resonates with audiences of all backgrounds.”

Related: Dine on a Pirate Ship? This ‘Peter Pan’ Restaurant Used to Exist!

Although we’ve seen popular names like Jim Gaffigan, Hans Conried, Joshua Pickering, Tim Curry, and even Danny Kaye play pirates, lost boys, and other characters in the world of Peter Pan, as the world collectively moves toward a more forward-thinking mindset, many have found some themes within the original work, and Disney’s representation to be problematic.

Full of racial slurs, reflective of Barrie’s time, perhaps it’s time for Peter Pan to catch up with the inclusive thinking of today’s world.

Credit: Disney

Although not a Disney production, the story has become a foundational part of Disney culture and is now set for a US tour, with dates in Orlando and Miami. BNN notes:

…the production stands as a beacon of progress in portraying Native people and women in the arts. By casting a ‘mirror’ that reflects the true diversity of America, this adaptation seeks to make theater accessible to children nationwide, instilling in them the values of inclusivity and respect from a young age. While staying true to the essence of Barrie’s exploration of freedom, innocence, and the complexities of growing up, this reimagined Peter Pan promises to lead us on a journey that is not only magical but meaningful.

How do you feel about this upcoming production of Peter Pan? Let us know in the comments below!

About Michael Arnold

Michael is a father, husband, and an Army Veteran. Michael spends his weekends at Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando checking out new merchandise and food. Michael is a graduate of the University of Alabama and has an education background in Public Health. You can find Michael riding Pirates of the Caribbean over and over again or binge watching new Marvel and Star Wars content. Han shot first. Thor is the strongest Avenger. Roll Tide and Wash Your Hands!

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