A Game Not Lost Theatre Show

by Amber Ryder in London, England, United Kingdom

Total raised £600

raised so far



A Game Not Lost 孤注一擲 is a virtual theatre show that needs your support. This show is based on the life of Chinese pirate, Ching Shih 鄭石氏.

by Amber Ryder in London, England, United Kingdom

We're still collecting donations

On the 9th March 2021 we'd raised £600 with 17 supporters in 35 days. But as every pound matters, we're continuing to collect donations from supporters.

Sit down for a game of Mahjong with one of the most feared and powerful women of all time, Ching Shih 鄭石氏. With each wrong move, Ching recounts a small part of her history. Her life now coming in full circle from prostitute, to pirate captain, to madam, to mother; proving no destiny is too bold. Ching turned her femininity into a weapon when the world saw it as her weakness. A Game Not Lost 孤注一擲 is a show about femininity, sexual prowess and destiny. A biographical, historical tale, recounting true parts of history of the 19th century Chinese female pirate, Ching Shih, who ruled the Red Flag Fleet in Qing Dynasty China.

 海盜張保仔是個家傳戶曉的名字,但有多少人知道他身旁的女人,鄭石氏(又名鄭一嫂)的故事? 《孤注一擲》以獨腳戲的形式,邀請觀眾細聽鄭石氏的傳奇人生。 *英語演出及字幕,含少量粵語




A Game Not Lost 孤注一擲, is part of The Space Theatre's 2021 spring season and was originally planned to be staged as a live show with an audience, however due to the covid-19 pandemic, our show is now being transformed into a live-streamed production. We aim to bring the magic of theatre right into your living room, your kind donations will help us bring this show to life so everyone can share the joy of live theatre from the safety of your own homes. 



We plan to use your kind donations to go towards production costs, as well as for hiring the technical equipment we very much need to make the live-streaming possible. Money is also needed to go towards hiring the historically accurate 19th century Chinese costumes, as well as props, such as the authentic Mahjong board, daggers, sword and furniture. We plan to make this theatre show look as historically accurate as possible and your donations will go towards supporting us with this, as authenticity is vital for bringing the feel of 19th century China to your living rooms.




Director & Writer: Dorothy Kay 

With a background in moving image and music videos, Dorothy Kay (she/her) debuts her first theatre directing production at The Space theatre. Her work focuses on the female psyche: from the intimate to the outlandish. A story teller that manages to deconstruct society’s unending fascination and alarm at women’s strength.


Actress: Isabella Leung 梁皓貽 

Isabella (she/her) is a bilingual actor, theatre-maker and writer, trained at École Philippe Gaulier, Paris. Whilst her own work explores her cultural background through means of comedy and poetry, she also performed in varies productions in Hong Kong, Europe and China, focusing on devising work. Her latest credits include: Freedom Hi 自由閪 (Papergang Theatre),  Dante's In-Furlough (The Vaults) and The Astronaut (Menuetto Film).


Producer: Amber Ryder

Amber Ryder (she/her) is a London-based film and theatre-producer. She has a degree in creative theatre producing from Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts and graduated from Bournemouth Film School in 2017. She has many professional short film, feature film, commercial and theatre credits with companies such as Nice Shirt Films, Seize Films, Luti Media, Independent Talent Group, Superhero, Big Little Theatre School.


Dramaturg: Zhui Ning Chang

Zhui Ning Chang (she/they) is a Malaysian editor, sensitivity reader and theatre practitioner based in London and Singapore. Her work engages with topics such as decoloniality, migration and diaspora communities, speculative futures, and queer hopepunk action. In theatre, Zhui Ning is an award-winning director, producer, and facilitator. Her practice focuses on intercultural performance, multilingual storytelling, and theatre as resistance. Zhui Ning's directing work has been presented with companies in the UK, USA and Singapore. 


                 Who is Ching Shih?

Ching Shih 鄭石氏 was a Chinese pirate leader who terrorised the China Seas during the Jiaqing Emperor period of the Qing dynasty in the early 19th century. She commanded over 1800 junks (traditional Chinese sailing ships) manned by 60,000 to 80,000 pirates - men, women, and occasionally children. - Murray, D (1987). Her ships entered into conflict with several major powers, such as the East India Company, the Portuguese Empire, and the Qing government. In her early life she was a Cantonese prostitute who worked in a floating brothel (花船) in Canton. In 1801, she married Cheng I, a well-known pirate. - Lily Xiao Hong Lee, (2003)

A Game Not Lost 孤注一擲, is a show that is based off of the life story of the historical Chinese pirate Ching Shih 鄭石氏. The show is a new writing piece and extensive research has taken place in order to ensure the story we are presenting is as factually correct as possible; however, please be aware that there are multiple versions of events that took place in her life.

***Any supporters selecting the £50 or £100 reward, please remember you must leave your name and email address to receive the reward, if you wish to remain anonymous please email these details to [email protected] ***

We ask project owners to honour their rewards wherever possible but please note that all pledges are donations and there is no guarantee that you will receive any rewards from the project owner. Please see our Terms of Use for more information regarding rewards for pledges.


This project offered rewards

£100 or more

£100 Reward

Two free tickets to watch the show (worth £15 each), plus all of the above. (You MUST leave your name and email address to receive this award, if you wish to remain anonymous please email these details to [email protected])

£5 or more

£5 Reward

Our eternal gratitude.

£10 or more

£10 Reward

A thank you shout out on social media.

£25 or more

£25 Reward

A signed copy of the script will be sent to you.

£50 or more

£50 Reward

A free ticket to watch the show (worth £15), plus all perks from the £5, £10 & £25 rewards too!

£75 or more

£75 Reward

Watch an exclusive rehearsal of the show (a zoom link will be sent to you for you to watch a rehearsal of the show before anyone else has seen it)

£250 or more

£250 Reward

You will get all of the above, plus a private Q&A zoom session with you and the creative team.

£500 or more

£500 Reward

You will get the once in a life time opportunity to play actress Isabella Leung at a game of virtual Mahjong while she is in character as Ching Shih. Plus personalised thank you cards and images of the production process will be sent to you, along with a free ticket to watch the show! (Please provide name and email address for this reward)

£1,000 or more

£1000 Reward - Mahjong Master!

The Mahjong Master! We will give you the one and only beautiful and irreplaceable Mahjong set used in the show! Along with signed thank you messages and pictures from the production team. You will also get the once in a life time opportunity to play Isabella Leung at a virtual game of Mahjong while she is in character as the amazing Ching Shih. (Please provide name and email address for this reward)

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