Book Week shows for students... by teachers!!

Ph. 1300 BOOK WEEK

Tony's past Book Week shows (above)

For Book Week 2019


CBCA Short-Listed

"2019 Picture Book of the Year" show

Book Week is 17-23 August 2019


Theme: "Reading is My Secret Power"


“The children were enthralled to see a book come to life in a live performance.” St Therese PS, Mascot, NSW

Past CBCA Short Listed Books that "Tony Bones" Appleby B.Ed has adapted & performed include...




34 - The All New Must Have Orange 430 (2019 - based on the picture book by Michael Speechley)

33 - A Walk in the Bush (2018 - based on the picture book by Gwyn Perkins)

32 - The Windy Farm (2014 - based on the picture book by Doug McLeod & Craig Smith)

31 - My Life As An Alphabet (2014 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Barry Jonsberg)

30 - Herman & Rosie (2013 - based on the picture book by Gus Gordon)

29 - Other Brother (2013 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Simon French)

28 - No Bears (2012 - based on the picture book by Meg McKinlay)

27 - Bungawitta (2012 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Emily Rodda)

26 - Two Peas in a Pod (2011 - based on the picture book by Chris McKimmie)

25 - Duck For A Day (2011 - based on the younger reader's novel by Meg McKinlay)

24 - Schumann the Shoeman (2010 - based on the picture book by John & Stella Danalis)

23 - Matty Forever (2010 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Elizabeth Fensham)

22 - Nobody Owns The Moon (2009 - based on the picture book by Tohby Riddle)

21 - Audrey Of The Outback (2009 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Christine Harris)

20 - The Night Garden (2008 - based on the picture book by Elise Hurst)

19 - Amelia Dee & The Peacock Lamp (2008 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Odo Hirsch)

18 - Water Witcher (2007 - based on the picture book by Jan Ormerod)

17 - Being Bee (2007 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Catherine Bateson)

16 - Irving The Magician (2006 - based on the picture book by Tohby Riddle)

15 - To The Light (2006 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Pat Flynn)

14 - At The Beach - Postcards from Crabby Spit (2005 - based on the picture book by Roland Harvey)

13 - Billy Mack’s War (2005 - based on the younger reader’s novel by James Roy)

12 - Milli, Jack & the Dancing Cat (2004 - based on the picture book by Stephen Michael King)

11 - Stella By The Sea (2004 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Ruth Starke)

10 - Bear & Chook (2003 - based on the picture book by Lisa Shanahan & Emma Quay)

9 - Tom Jones Saves The World (2003- based on the younger reader’s novel by Steven Herrick)

8 - Horrible Harriet (2002 - based on the picture book by Leigh Hobbs)

7 - My Story - A Different Sort Of Real - The Diary Of Charlotte McKenzie - Melbourne 1918 (2002 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Kerry Greenwood)

6 - When Dogs Cry (2002 - based on the older reader’s novel by Markus Zusak)

5 - The Singing Hat (2001 - based on the picture book by Tohby Riddle)

4 - Something's Fishy, Hazel Green! (2001 - based on the younger reader’s novel by Odo Hirsch)

3 - Touch Me (2001 - based on the older reader’s novel by James Moloney)

2 - Captain Mack (2000 - by Tony Appleby based on the younger reader’s novel by James Roy)

1 - Tyro (2000 - based on the older reader’s novel by David McRobbie)

2019 Season Dates

All tour dates are subject to change depending on availability. If you'd like the show to perform in your area out of the advertised season dates then just ask & we'll try our best to accomodate you.


  • Melbourne, Geelong, Ballarat, Bendigo & the rest of Victoria (VIC) Primary School Book Week Tour 2019

  • July 29th to August 1, 2019 (Term 3, Week 3, 2019 / 3 weeks before Book Week 2019)

  • August 6th to 9th, 2019 (Term 3, Week 4, 2019 / 2 weeks before Book Week 2019)

  • August 16th to 23rd (Term 3, Week 5-6, 2019 / Book Week 2019)

  • September 9th to 13th, 2019 (Term 3, Week 9, 2019 / 3 weeks after Book Week 2019)

  • Where do Books To Life tour in Victoria? Click here!!

  • Make an enquiry - Click here!!!


  • Sydney, Newcastle, Central Coast & the rest of New South Wales (NSW) Primary School Book Week Tour 2019

  • August 12th to 15th, 2019 (Term 3, Week 4, 2019 / 1 week before Book Week 2019)

  • August 26th, 2019 (Term 3, Week 6, 2019 - 1 week after Book Week 2019)

  • September 2nd to 6th, 2019 (Term 3, Week 7, 2019 - 2 weeks after Book Week 2019)

  • September 16th to 20th, 2019 (Term 3, Week 9, 2019 - 4 weeks after Book Week 2019)

  • Where do Books To Life tour in New South Wales? Click here!!

  • Make an enquiry - Click here!!!


  • Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast & the rest of Queensland (QLD) Primary School Book Week Tour 2019

  • August 26th to 30th, 2019 (Term 3, Week 7, 2019 / 1 week after Book Week 2019)

  • Where do Books To Life tour in Queensland? Click here!!

  • Make an enquiry - Click here!!!


  • Canberra & the rest of Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Primary School Book Week Tour 2019

  • August 15th, 2019 (Term 3, Week 4, 2019 / 1 week before Book Week 2019)

  • Where do Books To Life tour in Australian Capital Territory? Click here!!

  • Make an enquiry - Click here!!!


  • Adelaide & the rest of South Australia (SA) Primary School Book Week Tour 2019

  • August 2nd, 2019 (SA Term 3 Week 2 / 3 weeks before Book Week 2019)

  • Where do Books To Life tour in South Australia? Click here!!

  • Make an enquiry - Click here!!!


  • Hobart, Launceston & the rest of Tasmania (TAS) Primary School Book Week Tour 2019

  • August 5th, 2019 (TAS Term 3 Week 3 / 2 weeks before Book Week 2019)

  • Where do Books To Life tour in Tasmania? Click here!!

  • Make an enquiry - Click here!!!



Desperate to find a Book Week 2019 performance for your primary school in Melbourne, VIC?


Then click here for season dates for regional & urban Victoria for 2019 & search no more!! Includes specific dates for our 2019 tour in Melbourne (including touring dates for Northern suburbs, Western suburbs & South East Melbourne), plus all towns & cities in VIC including Geelong, Ballarat, Bendigo, Melton, Shepparton, Wodonga, Sunbury, Pakenham, Mildura, Warrnambool, Traralgon, Wangaratta, Ocean Grove, Barwon Heads, Bacchus Marsh, Torquay, Jan Juc, Horsham, Moe, Newborough, Warragul, Morwell, Sale, Lara, Bairnsdale, Echuca, Drysdale, Clifton Springs, Colac, Drouin, Leopold, Portland, Swan Hill, Castlemaine, Gisborne, Benalla, Hamilton, Wallan, Healsville, Wonthaggi, Yarrawonga, Maryborough, Kilmore, Ararat, Portalington, St Leonards, Lakes Entrance, Kyabram, Seymour, Stawell, Cobram, Leongatha, Inverloch, Bannockburn & Cowes. Not on the list? Let us know & we'll find a date for you on the tour too!!


Need a primary school show for Book Week 2019 in Sydney, NSW?


Season dates for regional & urban New South Wales are available for 2019 if you just click here!! Includes specific dates for our 2019 tour in Sydney (including touring dates for The Blue Mountains, Cantebury, The Eastern Suburbs of Sydney, Forest District, Falls District, Western Sydney, Macarthur, Northern Beaches, Parramatta, Blacktown, Penrith, Sutherland Shire, Berowra & Hawkesbury), plus all towns & cities in NSW including Newcastle, Central Coast, Wollongong, Maitland, Tweed Heads, Wagga, Albury, Port Macquarie, Tamworth, Orange, Dubbo, Coffs Harbour, Queanbeyan, Lismore, Bathurst, Coffs Harbour, Richmond, Windsor, Bomaderry, Nowra, Goulburn, Armidale, Broken Hill, Wentworth Falls, Katoomba, Forster, Tuncurry, Bellbird, Cessnock, Grafton, Taree, Ballina, Griffith, Sawtell, Singleton, Raymond Terrace, Weston, Kurri Kurri, Kiama, Lithgow, Bowral, Batemans Bay, Lawson, Hazelbrook, Muswellbrook, Parkes, Ulladulla, Inverell, Moree & Casino. Not on the list? Let us know & we'll find a date for you on the tour too!!


What 2019 Book Week shows tour to primary schools in Canberra, ACT?


Ours does!! Click here for all our season dates for Australian Capital Territory for 2019. Includes specific dates for our 2019 tour of all ACT suburbs in and around Canberra, Palmerston, Belconnen, Canberra Central, Curtin, Narrabundah, Queanbeyan, Kambah, Gordon, Gungahalin, Jerrabomberra, Majura, Molonglo Valley, Tuggeranong, Weston Creek & Woden Valley. Not on the list? Let us know & we'll find a date for you on the tour too!!


Can't find a Book Week 2019 stage show that blows your primary school away in Brisbane, QLD?


Then click here and stop looking!! Season dates for regional & urban Queensland have been released for 2019. Includes specific dates for our 2019 tour of all suburbs in Brisbane plus all other areas of QLD including South East Queensland, Wide Bay, Burnett, Far North Queensland (FNQ), Darling Downs, North Queensland, Central Queensland, Gulf Country, South West Queensland & Central West Queensland. Specific towns & cities in QLD to be toured in 2018 include Ipswich, Logan City, Redland City & Morton Bay Region, Gold Coast, Tweed Heads, Sunshine Coast, Townsville, Cairns, Toowoomba, Mackay, Rockhampton, Bundaberg, Hervey Bay, Gladstone, Maryborough, Mount Isa, Gympie, Bongaree, Woorim, Nambour, Yeppoon, Warwick, Emerald, Dalby, Bargara, Innes Park, Kingaroy, Tannum Sands, Moranbah & Bowen. Not on the list? Let us know & we'll find a date for you on the tour too!!


Scratching your head for a Book Week 2019 performance for your primary school in Adelaide, SA?


Well, you've come to the right place. Click here for all our season dates for regional & urban South Australia for 2019. Includes specific dates for our 2019 tour of all suburbs in Adelaide plus all towns & cities in SA including Mount Gambier, Whyalla, Gawler, Port Pirie, Bridgewater, Port Augusta, Murray Bridge, Port Lincoln, Mount Barker, Victor Harbour, Aldinga Beach, Naracoorte, Renmark, Millicent, Goolwa, Berri, Nuriootpa, Tanunda, Kadina, Roxby Downs, Loxton, Strathalbyn, Moonta, Clare, Nairne, Wallaroo, Coober Pedy, McLaren Vale, Ceduna, Bordertown, Kapunda, Mannum, Barmera, Angaston, Willunga, Hahndorf, Waikerie, Kingscote, Lobethal, Peterborough, Woodside, Port Elliot, Balaklava, Sellicks Beach, Kingston, Tailem Bend, Jamestown & Williamstown. Not on the list? Let us know & we'll find a date for you on the tour too!!


What can I do at my primary school in Hobart, TAS for Book Week 2019?


See our show!! Click here for all our season dates for Tasmania for 2019. Includes specific dates for our 2019 tour of all TAS suburbs in and around Hobart, Launceston, Devonport, Burni, Somerset, Blackmans Bay, Kingston, Ulverstone, Gagebrook, Bridgewater, New Norfolk, Wynyard, George Town, Sorell, Midway Point, Smithton, Penguin, Longford, Latrobe, Dodges Ferry, Lauderdale, Queenstown, Legana, Deloraine, Perth, Old Beach, Port Sorrell, Scottsdale, Hadspen, St Helens, Stieglitz, Huonville, Ranelagh, Pontville, Bridport, Turners Beach, Westbury, Beauty Point, Rosebery, Seven Mile Beach, Evandale, Beaconsfield, Sheffield, Margate, Zeehan, Railton, Geeveston, Richmond, Cygnet, Snug & Currie. Not on the list? Let us know & we'll find a date for you on the tour too!!












About the show:



Curriculum Areas:


  • The Arts (Dance, Drama, Media Arts, Music, Visual Arts); 

  • English;

  • Science;

  • Humanities and Social Sciences.


Learning Areas:


  • Literacy;

  • ICT Capability;

  • Critical & Creative Thinking;

  • Personal and Social Capability;

  • Ethical Understanding;

  • Intercultural Understanding.


Topics & Themes:


  • The Environment & Nature (Sustainability, Conservation, Recycling, Reducing Waste);

  • Relationships (Making New Friends, Making Your Own Fun, Creative Play);

  • Money Management (Saving Money, Spending Money Wisely);

  • Consumerism and waste

  • Need versus want

  • Creativity and imagination


Suitable for: 


  • Foundation (Prep, Reception) to Year 6. Will it work for all year levels? Click here




This brand new 40-minute stage performance for Australian primary schools will be the 34th CBCA shortlisted "Book Week" book adapted & performed by "Tony Bones" Appleby B.Ed. He is a qualified drama & dance teacher with over 20 years of professional teaching & performing experience in children's theatre & theatre in education.

The show will bring the book to life!!! It includes:


Drama: a variety of performance styles within the show: Melodrama, Pantomime, Musical Theatre, Physical Theatre, Mime, Puppetry, Game show, Improvisation, etc.


Dance: a variety of dance styles within the show to the 5 original songs.


Music: 5 original songs with a variety of music styles in the show: Pop, Hip Hop, RnB, Rap, Rock, Music Theatre, Folk, etc;

Puppetry: a variety of puppetry styles in the show: Shadow Puppetry (Mr Ripoff), Hand Puppetry (Loulou), Marionette / String Puppetry (Mr Ripoff), Board Puppetry (The Old Lady at the Shop), Ventriloquist Dolls / Talkie Puppetry (Blue 125 Boy, Purple 890 Girl, Yellow 727 Girl), Rod Puppetry (The Neighbour's Dog), 2D Puppetry (Harvey & The Old Lady at the Shop on Paper Bags).

Painted / Printed Sets - The "This Way Up" Arrows set piece on vinyl, The "UOI Factory" set piece on coreflute.

Digital projections: 2 x 16:9 digital projectors cast images of the book, digital images of sets, animations, explosions & lighting displays onto large freestanding 100" rear projection screens on either side of the stage creating an incredible viewing experience for the students. They are also used for shadow puppetry in the show.

Raised staging: 45cm high staging 2m wide x 1m deep ensure everyone, even in very large groups can see all of the action;

DMX coloured stage lighting: the very latest DMX coloured stage lighting is used throughout the show to create an intense & dynamic atmosphere throughout the performance.

Professional sound system & headset microphones: powered EV pro speakers & the professional Shure radio headset microphone & bodypack are used to ensure crystal clear sound for even the very largest halls;

Audience participation: Students are used throughout the show to both participate in the audience (responding, singing or dancing along, creating scenes in the audience such as participating in teams in "The Box Games" & creating the returns line to dance & sing in protest at the "UOI Factory") & also joining in on stage to be part of improvised scenes (shopping for useless objects at "The Small Shop");

Full Q&A session: after the show a full Question & Answer session takes place led by "Tony Bones" Appleby B.Ed, a qualified teacher with over 16 years experience running these sessions. Tony discusses in depth why he made certain decisions when creating the show (e.g. adding scenes or slightly changing them from the book, sets used, etc), and shows students how the props, sets, puppets, costumes, projections & sound were created for the show, as well as discussing the writing of the script & composing of the songs & music;

Lesson plans for teachers:  Follow up activities are provided for all year levels.


Public Liability Cover of $30,000,000 & Professional Indemnity Insurance of $5,000,000. Click here!!!


Cost (excl. GST): $6/student - Minimum show fee of $750 for up to 125 students then $6/student thereafter

Year Levels: Foundation - Year 7.


Make an enquiry - Click here!!!


Testimonials for our 2019 stage adaptation of "The All New Must Have Orange 430":


"It was fantastic!!! I was just walking around, singing your songs and living life:)... I’m so stoked with what you were able to do... Thanks so much, Tony, what a show!!! Many, many thanks, Mike :)" Michael Speechley, author-illustrator of The All New Must Have Orange 430.


"Thank you SO much for today's wonderful and entertaining performance of the book "The All New Must Have Orange 430". I have only had positive comments and enthusiastic praise for the whole event from staff and students! Well done to you Tony.... WOW - What an amazing and entertaining show! "The All New Must Have Orange 430" performed by Tony was a fantastic way to kick off our Children's Book Week celebrations for 2019. Staff and students all thoroughly enjoyed the performance, which included music, humour, puppetry, games, important messages and themes - indeed something for everyone!" Inger Robinson, Librarian, Ashburton PS, VIC


"Feedback from staff has been overwhelmingly positive, none of us can remember any performance or activity that was so engaging for the whole school, it is rare to find something that caters for F-6 in any meaningful way. The students are still talking about you a week later." Jennifer Clarke, Ruskin Park PS, Croydon, VIC


"My staff LOVED the performance you did for us the other week.  Staff found you engaging, entertaining and well prepared.  Staff commented on how well you interacted with the children on and off the stage.  The children loved the performance. We are all so happy that at our Department meeting this week they wanted me to book you in again for next year! What dates will you be touring in our area next year? On a personal note, I have found you easy to work with and communicate with.  Nothing is too much trouble.  Thank you." Karen Coleman, St Philip's CC, Port Stephens, NSW

"Tony and his staff put together a great performance, tailored well for the variety of ages. It was interactive and engaging. Great use of different techniques to keep students totally focused and we really loved observing the excitement around the room during the audience participation. The characters, scenes and reflection at the end which focused on the ideas presented ensured it was a great learning journey for the students." Year 5 Team - Ashburton PS, VIC.


"Thanks once again... Our students loved the show and were taking away ideas for our own performance in a few weeks time!" Michael Aquilina, Performing Arts Teacher, Gilles Street PS, Adelaide, SA


"YES!!!!!!!!!  Spoke to staff re idea of rebooking and got an absolute YES!  Staff told me that your show was the best thing we had seen all year!" Shiralee Morris, Teacher-Librarian, President: MASLA (Maitland Area School Library Association), Nulkaba PS, NSW


"Hi Tony, My name is Wendy Noble and along with the students at Gilles Street Primary school I sat and watched your amazing performance." Wendy Noble, ACEO, Paradise, SA


"It was fabulous. I really enjoyed it and the message that it sent to the children. The fact that the children were so thoroughly engaged, speaks volumes.  I for one will be buying that book for my grandies - great message." Linelle Hughes, Stella Maris Catholic PS, Burnie, TAS


"To keep a class of 26 four & five-year-olds engaged for a whole hour is a remarkable feat! The use of multi-media was captivating. Seriously impressed!" Shontelle Cocks, Stella Maris Catholic PS, Burnie, TAS


"Thank you so much for bringing your energetic show to our school. Staff and students were entranced. We're still singing your songs! Looking forward to next year!" Tanya Boon, Library Technician, Stella Maris Catholic PS, Burnie, TAS


"The feedback from staff and students was very positive. The students were engaged with the use of puppetry, song and the activities you had them do. The performance was cleverly done and the students learnt a lot about how a show can be brought to the stage with only 1 person acting. We would like to rebook you next year." Kerri-Anne Hubble, Principal, Dungowan PS, NSW


"Thanks again for a wonderful show yesterday. Both staff and students thoroughly enjoyed it." Eamon Johnson, Assistant Principal, Ross Creek Campus Head, Woady Yaloak PS, VIC


"Thanks Tony... We would love to have you back next year." Amy Cameron, Level 2 PLC Leader, Kingswood PS, Dingley Village, VIC.


"Thanks again for your performance. We had in another group the day after yours and in my opinion, yours shone above. I really like how you think about the space and transform it as well as adding in the games, really makes the kids excited and brings out their enjoyment of the Arts." Nicholas Kong, Specialist Leader, Performing Arts, 5/6 Teacher, Roberts McCubbin Primary School, Box Hill, VIC.


"Hi Tony, Once again thank you for yesterday’s performance. It was very entertaining and captured the messages in the book really well. I had many students and staff tell me how much they enjoyed the afternoon. We hope to see you again next year. I have also sent this feedback to our teacher/librarian network as I think not everyone knows that you’re back!" Irene Ovchinnikov, Caroline Chisholm School, ACT. 


"Thank you, Tony. I heard great things about the performance. The Students at Gib Gate loved it... We look forward to seeing you again in the future." Lee Ann Marsh, Gib Gate School, Mittagong, NSW


"Wow!! Thanks again for your animated show today Tony - "The All New Must Have Orange 430" came to life. The staff were very positive about the presentation and the message for our students." Meg Smith, Teacher Librarian, St Paul's PS, Gateshead

“I thought the performance was excellent. It appeared to engage most children... I felt as though the presenter did a wonderful job to interact with the audience as I observed him choose a range of different audience members ranging in ages. It was also great to see (the) range of tech, props and his movement around the gym too (he did not stay on stage!)... a great performance." Year 7 staff “I thought the performance was entertaining and very interactive. Older students were picked evenly for some things, two even made it on stage." Year 6 staff. "Thanks again for visiting our school!" Sarah Fewster, Newbery Park PS, Millicent, SA.


"Hi Tony, Thanks so much for bringing The Must Have All New Orange 430 to life at Ringwood Heights Primary School. The students in my class really enjoyed your performance. Highlights included the puppetry, the voices and songs, and the audience interaction. As a teacher, I really appreciated the deliberate efforts you made to keep the students active and engaged. I noticed the way you used movement and directional changes to prevent them from getting restless. The box dance and games were really valuable in involving them in the performance. Perhaps most appreciated was the question and answer time at the end. Thank you for taking the opportunity to make the lessons of the book really explicit, and challenging the students to think more deeply about the issues raised. I appreciate the time you gave to the thoughtful preparation of this performance. As a teacher and father, time is precious. I think the time you’ve given to The Orange 430 is truly worthwhile. I’m looking forward to your next visit!” Jude Ridley, Ringwood Heights PS, VIC

"I absolutely loved it! Every student in my class put their thumbs up too! They loved that he got them all involved in the games, they thought it was hilarious and very entertaining” Emily, Woady Yaloak PS, VIC

"Hello Tony...I wanted to pass on a special thank you from all the staff at CGS Malvern for an absolutely spectacular performance of the All New Must Have Orange 430. Your show enthralled us all, from 3-year-olds right up to the "oldies" in the group- the teachers, and even our own Head of Campus!! The staff were so impressed with the way you included all the students, brought the story alive with you engaging performance and encouraged active participation by the children whilst maintaining their concentration and attention at the same time. Question time at the end of the show gave purpose and enlightened everyone even more about a remarkable book. Thank you so much Tony and Congratulations on another Book Week spectacular.” Diane Lester, Teacher Librarian, Caulfield Grammar School Malvern, VIC

"Hi Tony, We loved your new show “The All New Orange 430”! It was very topical and had a wonderful mixture of song and text to keep the students entertained and engaged. Congratulations on a wonderful show. We were lucky to have you at IGS again!” Alexandra Lett, Ivanhoe Grammar School, VIC

“I thought it was really great and a wonderful addition to our Book Week activities. All of the children seemed engaged and his teacher background was very evident in the way Tony organised the performance with audience participation, competition and movement. I would like this to be booked again for next year if possible. My kids gave it a unanimous thumbs-up.” Leanne, Woady Yaloak PS, VIC

"The Foundation students loved the show you performed. It was engaging and interesting and highlighted the meaning behind of the story. The show was fast-paced and had just the right amount of student engagement” Alaine Beare, The Foundation Coordinator, Ruskin Park PS, Croydon, VIC.

"Thanks so much for bringing your show to our school last week.  The children thoroughly enjoyed the show. Surprisingly, even the senior kids were hooked in.  I have had a really good response from some of the teachers as well… I would really like to book you in for next year's Book Week if possible… Once again a super big thanks to you.” Catherine Rodgers, St Thomas More PS, Mt Eliza, VIC

"I think the performance was excellent!  The kids were very engaged, interested and very well behaved after what was a busy day.” Stephen, Woady Yaloak PS, VIC

"Thanks, Tony. Great Show.” Faun Palos, Calvary Christian College, Springwood Campus, QLD.

"Hi Tony, Just letting you know how wonderful we thought your play was.  My year 3’s loved it.  The songs were so catchy we were humming them all day! I thought the message was really strongly put across to the students and we were able to reflect and do some work on it that day. The actor was so engaging and I loved the interactivity of the play. Thanks so much for another winner of a production!” Deirdre Capuano, Year 3 Teacher, Ivanhoe Grammar School, VIC

"I asked the kids for a quick “out of 10” after the performance on Monday. The great majority said 10 out of 10. They all had different parts that they enjoyed, but all were engaged; and as we had looked in detail at the story and the author’s message previously, they really understood the show. I thought it was great to expose the kids to a performance of this kind and would be strongly in favour of similar performances in the future!” Wendy, Woady Yaloak PS, VIC

"Hi Tony, Thanks again for an awesome show we all thoroughly enjoyed it.” Janelle Gill, Banora Point PS, NSW

“Kids really enjoyed being engaged with the show. They thought it was great how students got to be involved. They thought he was funny and it was worth the money. Very enjoyable.” Grant, Woady Yaloak PS, VIC

"Hi Tony, Thanks again for last weeks show… Can we rebook for Friday of Book Week next year please?” Deb Cullen, Morang South PS, VIC

"Feedback from my class was that the show was fantastic. They liked how they got to go up on stage and join in and it helped them understand the story more. I would love for another show to be organised for next year.” Jenna, Woady Yaloak PS, VIC

"Hi Tony, We loved the performance last week, so much so that we would love to have you back next year.” Olivia Atanasovska, Assistant Principal, Jennings Street School, Laverton, VIC

"I really enjoyed the performance- I thought it was funny but also had some great concepts for our students to engage in and learn from. I also thought it catered from Kinder to Year 6 and all students seemed to really enjoy it. I also liked how some students were asked to come up to the stage and be involved in the performance, it keeps the students guessing what will happen next!" Kate, Yr5/6 teacher, St Paul's School, Gateshead, NSW

"Hi Tony! Thank you SO much for today... Staff and students feedback was so overwhelmingly positive!!!... Thanks." Melissa Summers, Teacher Librarian, NSW Teachers Federation Women's Contact Officer, Birrong Primary School, NSW

"Hi Tony, Thanks for your performance on Thursday... You did a great job of engaging the kids, and certainly ‘bringing the book to life’!!" Lauren Hawksworth, Library Assistant, Annadale Christian College, QLD

"Hi Tony, I lost count of how many staff members told me how fabulous your performance was last week. They were so impressed with the energy and variety of effects within your show. The inclusion of students was also a winner. The music teacher believes it was the best performance incursion he had ever seen... As teacher-librarian, I was delighted with how you stayed true to the story - following page by page. The artistic license you took in dealing with the woman behind the counter seemed quite appropriate and greatly added to the humour. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and was so pleased to see the children totally engaged. Thank you again for your show. I will be sure to pass on my recommendations to other teacher librarians." Therese Badke, St Mark's School, Inala, QLD


"Hi Tony, What a show! The book came to life! The students were enthralled in the performance. There was lots of positive feedback from both teachers and students. The props were very well crafted and the degree of student participation in the show was great. I hope we are able to see you again next year. Thank you" Laura Pecotich, Kemps Creek PS, NSW


"Hi Tony, What a great show! Everyone loved it. It had it all - music, comedy, interactive activities and a great message. It ticked all the boxes." Sylvia Milis, Classroom Teacher, Campsie Public School, NSW


"Dear Tony, Many thanks - your performance produced some extremely positive comments from experienced staff who thoroughly appreciated the work that went into this year's production. Yes, we would like to book for your 2020 visit" Rodney Linhart, Principal, St Patrick's Catholic School, Latrobe, Tasmania

Where will Books To Life tour in 2019???


Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra, Brisbane, Darwin, Perth, Adelaide & Hobart. Sure, we tour the 2019 Book Week show to all the major capital cities. But we also tour the 2019 Book Week show absolutely anywhere in Australia, as long as we can cover the cost of touring the show there.


Sometimes this involves asking schools who book the show in more regional or even very remote areas to then spread the word to their network of teachers at other schools to increase their own audience numbers or to get another school in the area to also book the show. But rest assured, from the very tip of Cape York in QLD, to South East Cape in Tassie, from Steep Point in WA to Byron Bay in NSW, from Wilson's Prom, VIC to Port Lincoln in SA, from Gordon in ACT to Alice Springs in NT, I've travelled to them all before. I'm happy to do it again!! So let's get specific. Exactly where & when do Books To Life tour in Australia?







Based on the book written & Illustrated by Michael Speechley & published by Penguin Random House Australia


Adapted for the stage & performed by "Tony Bones" Appleby B.Ed

Technical Design by Peter Amesbury & Tony


CBCA 2019 Picture Book of the Year "Honours Award"

CBCA 2019 Picture Book of the Year "Shortlisted Book"

CBCA 2019 Picture Book of the Year "Notable Book"

VIC Premiers' Reading Challenge 2019

NSW Premiers' Reading Challenge 2019

gallery/hi res cover the all new must have orange 430 cover

"Harvey owned a heap of stuff, but could always use more. The ORANGE 430 was the latest and the greatest. Harvey wasn't sure what it did, but he had to have it!"


"A cheeky picture book for anyone who’s bought a thingy or whatsit . . . and doesn't quite know why. In his debut picture book, Michael Speechley explores our obsession with stuff in a fun and edifying way.


A visually exciting and thought-provoking book about our desire for the next must-have thing, with a hopeful message that ultimately encourages kids to use their imaginations in more simple, connected, fulfilling and fun ways. An accessible introduction to our buying habits and the problems of plastic."


Reviews for the book:


“A splendid debut for a remarkably talented author-illustrator” Kevin Steinberger, Magpies - read more here!


"A picture book that is desperately needed in today's worldNever Ending Bookshelf - read more here!


"A great read aloud, humorous and rhythmic story that tells a cautionary tale about the world of consumerism." Kids' Book Review - read more here!


"This book is unique, thought-provoking and well layered" Little Big Reads - read more here!


"This book has a brilliant message about the effect that wanting to have so many things has on the environment" In The Good Books Blog - read more here!


"Speechley’s message is powerfully illustrated... Harvey’s message is potentGoodreads - read more here!


"The book encourages discussion about the difference between needs and wants, responsibility with money and the effects of advertising. A most important message" Fran Knight, Read Plus - read more here!


"Michael Speechley addresses the issues of consumerism, spending, consumption and related topics in a kid-friendly way in this fun, quirky, yet thought-provoking picture book" Just Kids' Lit - read more here!


"A thoroughly enjoyable read that boasts some truly colourful and fun images that helps take this children’s story to the next level... A real joy to read and was enjoyed by everyone. Highly Recommended!" Impulse Gamer - read more here!


"A very poignant book for today’s world where consumerism reigns and common sense has faded... The message this book gives us is simple – we don’t need all the stuff we have because we have it all in our minds – creativity, imagination, problem-solving... Fantastic and a must read for all children and their parents. It will start some big discussions" Educate. Empower. - read more here!


"Wonderfully funny and clever debut" The Literature Centre - read more here!


"Provides an important insight for families and for classes into the effects of advertising and consumerism in our worldRhyllis Bignell, Read Plus - read more here!


"This book is a must for all primary schools" Booking For 4 - read more here!


"This book is a breath of fresh air... a well-written, superbly illustrated book that compels the reader to think before they buy is excellent and will serve as a brilliant teaching tool" The Bottom Shelf, June 12 - read more here!


"Though the book does speak to the excessive consumerism prevalent in modern day life, it does so with wit and good humour. It is also uplifting – it highlights that we can take control of this affliction, make the world a better place. It also speaks to the joy to be found in simple things" Blog of Dad - read more here!


"A pertinent book for our times. A visually exciting and thought-provoking book about our desire for the next must-have thing, with a hopeful message that ultimately encourages kids to use their imaginations in more simple, connected, fulfilling and fun ways" Meller Agency - read more here!


"This book has a brilliant message about the effect that wanting to have so many things has on the environment. It explores the topic in a very clever, original way" In The Good Books Blog - read more here!


"My 8 and 11 year-olds enjoyed this book and are totally on-board with its message" Yarra Plenty Regional Library - read more here!


"Speaks to young and old... This is a story that you get more from on every read and with a message that truly packs a punch" Writing WA - read more here!


"With a timely MUST HAVE lesson for parents and kids alike, ‘Orange 430’ is refreshingly told with a new distinct voice and illustrative talent!" Words & Illustrations - read more here!


gallery/hi res cover the all new must have orange 430 cover

Tony performing in 2019's CBCA Shortlisted Picture Book of the Year show

"The All New Must Have Orange 430"


About the book:
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All Books Adapted for the stage by Tony Bones Appleby B.Ed