Work commissioned, developed and performed by Michelle Yim

The Ballad of Mulan

A woman, a warrior, a Chinese legend.


Don't expect a fluffy, magical Disney tale here, this Mulan is visceral.  She is a warrior, a fighter, a woman who survived in a very male world for ten years without discovery.  There is no perfect make-up, no singing animals, just a gritty story of a soldier. For ten long years she fought for the Chinese Empire, disguised as a man, but now the fighting is coming to an end, one last battle and she will be going home – but can she return to her old life, become a woman again. A search for identity in a violent world.


This is Michelle Yim's third solo commission, after The Empress and Me and An Evening with Miss Wong. Bloomsbury playwright Ross Ericson and Michelle Yim bring to life the real Mulan who, to save her families honour, disguised herself as a man and joined the Emperors army.

Mulan Fringe Brochure Image.jpg

This project’s development is supported using funding from Arts Council England.

Written and Directed by Ross Ericson

Performed by Michelle Yim

Music by Pearl Yim

Weapon and Armour by Philip Dell

Costume by Elizabeth Cooke

Produced by Grist to the Mill Productions

The Ballad of Mulan has visited:


The Rotunda Theatre, Buxton Fringe 21 Jul 2019

Assembly Room, Powder Room, Edfringe 2-23 Aug 2019

Chinese New Year 2020 UK Tour

New Hall School, Chelmsford, 22 Jan 2020

Dixie Grammar School, Market Bosworth, 28 Jan 2020

Newcastle Confucius Institute, 31 Jan 2020

The Carlile Hub, Meltham, 1 Feb 2020

Tullie House Museum, Carlisle, 2 Feb 2020

Cowley International College, St Helen, 3 Feb 2020

Anchorsholme Academy, Thornton-Cleveley, 4 Feb 2020

The Old Hall, UWTSD, Lampeter Campus, 5 Feb 2020

The Old Town Hall, Hemel Hempstead, 12 Feb 2020

Seven Kings School, Ilford, 14 Feb 2020​​​​​​​​​

Bakehouse Theatre Studio, Adelaide Fringe 3, 7, 12 Mar 2020

2021 Tour


Sat 29 May          Crucible Theatre, Sheffield          4:30pm/7:30pm

                        (as part of the Together Season)

Sun 27 June        Capstone Theatre, Liverpool        5:30pm

                       (as part of the Angel Field Festival)​​

Sat 11 Sept         Stephen Joseph Theatre,              2:30pm/7:30pm


Press Reviews 

Tulpa Magazine 'A powerful exploration of gender, war, and identity, as relevant and timely today as ever.'

Stage Whispers 'Michelle Yim is absolutely terrific as Mulan. She holds the stage with a commanding presence as well as charm and warmth. We feel for Mulan's dilemma, as well as being impressed with her fighting skills.'