The Orphan Train, a play by Aurand Harris and presented by the Phnom Penh Players, tells the story of nine orphans on an “orphan train” that left New York City on May 28, 1914 and traveled to towns in search of homes, any homes, anywhere for the orphaned and unwanted children. The lonesome whistle wails as the train chugs between encounters of anxiety, laughter, wistfulness, rejection and acceptance. Eight stories unfold, each a memorable surprise.

The production offers a talented and diverse cast of child leads to be showcased in the general community. Child actors from different backgrounds, ethnicities and schools come together in a celebration of the resilience of children!

Co-directors Chelsea Middendorf and Jo-Ann Lim decided to direct and produce this play together because they wanted to give the children of Phnom Penh an opportunity to star in a play for and about children. For many of the cast, this is their first time performing in a play. With the youngest cast member only eight years old and a strong supporting cast of adults and children, the play offers something for everyone.

The issues of adoption and orphanage care is something that is widely discussed in Cambodia, however, often children are not aware of the greater issues surrounding these topics. The play offers children and families a chance to see these issues discussed through stories in a child friendly, age appropriate manner so that families and educators can continue the discussion further.

All proceeds raised from this production will go to support the Cambodian Organization for Living and Temporary Care (COLT), an organisation that works to support community based care of children in Cambodia. COLT uses donations received to fund many different efforts to support and reintegrate children back into their communities by providing education and social services for marginalised families.

Production Information

Event page:


Venue: Sovannaphum Arts Association
Dates: April 5 and 6 at 7:00 PM; April 7 at 5:00PM

Tickets available at:

1) The Box Office – Phnom Penh
2) Lot 369 Cafe & Bar – TTP
3) Lot 369 Cafe & Bar – BKK
4) Kwest Restaurant

Tickets: $10/person.

Discounted tickets are available for school or homeschool group of 10+ students through the directors.



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