Synopsis: Chimerica

Date posted: 7 Feb 2017Author: STC Production: Chimerica

Chimerica by Lucy Kirkwood in rehearsals
The Chimerica ensemble in rehearsals (Photo: Hon Boey)


5 June 1989, Beijing. Amidst the bloody suppression of the Tiananmen Square protests, an unarmed man steps in front of a column of tanks. The tanks stop. From a hotel room nearby, Joe Schofield, a young photojournalist from America, captures the moment on camera. The Tank Man’s face is not visible; his identity and fate are unknown.

Twenty-three years later, in 2012, as America decides between Obama and Romney, Joe’s long-time friend in China, Zhang Lin, hints that the hero of that Tiananmen Square photo might have survived and moved to New York.

Joe launches into an investigation that threatens his career, his relationships and his personal ethics.


This synopsis is part of the program for Chimerica, which also features:

  • a note from director Kip Williams
  • an interview with writer Lucy Kirkwood
  • information and examples of the iconic Tank Man photographs
  • a timeline of the events in Beijing in 1989
  • biographies and photos of the cast and crew
  • photos from the rehearsal room
  • and much more!

Pick one up at the theatre for only $10




The word Chimerica is a combination of the words ‘China’ and ‘America’ coined by academic historian Niall Ferguson and economist Moritz Schularick to signal the intertwined economies of those two countries.


Chimerica, 28 Feb – 1 Apr, Roslyn Packer Theatre

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