Australian actor turned composer discusses his new musical celebrating individuality in the outback.

Pete the Sheepis an adaptation of a children’s book by Jackie French. How did you get involved in the project?
I was commissioned by the Monkey Baa Theatre Company. I’ve written songs for two of their shows before: Wendy Harmer’s Pearlie in the Park, and Stephen Michael King’s Milli and Jack and the Dancing Cat.
The book was adapted for the stage by Eva di Cesare, Tim McGarry and Sandra Eldridge. What was your collaboration with these writers like?
Eva, Tim and Sandie are the triumvirate who created and run Monkey Baa. I am delighted to be involved with such a dedicated, productive and creative team. They adapted Jackie’s book and made suggestions for where songs should occur and what these songs had to do plot and character-wise. Then we had two separate workshop weeks with director Jonathan Biggins (one with our terrific actors) before starting rehearsals.
The musical is aimed at young children. How did you approach composing for a family audience?
Like the writers, I try to make everything clear for the kids but I don’t write down to them: the work is not simplistic. I use...