Biographer, Playwright, Theatre Practitioner, Novelist
The Unusual Life of Edna Walling - is the biography of Australia's well-loved landscape designer, gardener, columnist, conservationist and photographer whose designs and ideas were popular from the 1920s to 1960s - and remain so today. The book explores the life story of this extraordinary woman. Winner of the inaugural Peter Blazey Award for Life Writing (University of Melbourne). Published by Allen & Unwin 2005. Still in print. Order from your local bookshop or outlets on line such as:
Dame Joan Hammond - Love and Music - celebrates the life of the Australian opera singer and golf champion who made her name in the UK during WW2. Allen & Unwin, 2008. The hardback is becoming a collector's item (!), though libraries have it, the eBook version can be found here: https://www.amazon.com.au/Dame-Joan-Hammond-Love-music-ebook/dp/B0051SIUS0
More Female Parts - three versatile monologues that explore the sixty-something woman in terms of gender inequalities, domestic violence, financial torments and rollicking self empowerment. It premiered with Darebin Speakeasy in 2014 and was reprised at the Fairfax Studio, Arts Centre Melbourne 2015 plus regional tour. Performed by Evelyn Krape, direction Lois Ellis. See promo: https://vimeo.com/92913858
Vita! - a fantasy - a play based on the relationship between Virginia Woolf and Vita Sackville-West incorporating Woolf's fantasy biography of the male/female 'Orlando' - which she created for, and about, Vita. Winner of an Oscarts award, Best New Play. It is published in Heroines: A Contemporary Anthology of Australian Women Writers, Penguin 1991.
She of the Electrolux - based on the Australian author Marjorie Barnard, first performed at La Boite theatre, Brisbane, 1995.
Radclyffe - co-authored with Adele Saleem, a biographical play about Radclyffe Hall, her lifetime lover Una Troubridge and the banning of Radclyffe's notorious lesbian novel The Well of Loneliness in 1928. Performed by Sara Hardy and Lois Ellis, directed by Lois Ellis under the banner of Radclyffe Theatre Productions. Numerous performances in Australia and a tour to Vancouver for the 1990 Gay Games and Arts Festival.
Queer Fruit - performances in Melbourne and Baltimore 1998.
Who Knows? - co-authored with Philip Timmins and B. Bailey, commissioned by and performed at the Royal Court, London, 1979, as part of the Season On Sexism program for young people in partnership with Gay Sweatshop theatre company - of which Sara was a founding member.
Sara is an Associate of the School of Culture and Communication, Faculty of Arts, University of Melbourne. For a more detailed (exhaustive!) list of works go to Google Scholar: https://scholar.google.com.au/citations?user=nn04ez8AAAAJ&hl=en&oi=sra
Born in the UK, Sara trained in theatre and dance at Dartington College of Arts, Devon, and performed with various theatre companies in London during the late 70s and early 80s notably Gay Sweatshop, the first professional gay theatre company in Britain; Hormone Imbalance, a lesbian theatre company; and Half Moon Young People's Theatre.
Sara has worked with a range of theatre companies since she moved to Australia in 1981 - they include Unlimited Lives, Women's Theatre Project, Sydney; Troupe Theatre, Adelaide; and Radclyffe Theatre Productions, Home Cooking Theatre Company Melbourne.
Sara has worked extensively with director/actor/partner Lois Ellis (wearing the bow tie in pic, Sara is in the frock) - they created Radclyffe Theatre Productions in Melbourne together and presented various lesbian-feminist works from the mid 1980s to early 2000s.
To learn more about Hormone Imbalance theatre co go to https://www.unfinishedhistories.com/history/companies/hormone-imbalance/ and re their production of Ophelia see http://www.unfinishedhistories.com/history/companies/hormone-imbalance/ophelia/
For more about Gay Sweatshop theatre co see http://www.unfinishedhistories.com/history/companies/gay-sweatshop/any-woman-can/ and see http://www.unfinishedhistories.com/history/companies/gay-sweatshop/ and for info regarding the division into a male and female company see http://www.unfinishedhistories.com/history/companies/gay-sweatshop/the-decision-to-split/
The carousel images above (click on the pic, click on the arrows) comprise a Haphazard Retrospective.
PHOTO CREDITS:- Evelyn Krape in More Female Parts (with red ball); Edna Walling (with dog); Sara Hardy in various guises including standing in front of Edna Walling's self portrait; performing Edna Walling in Edna for the Garden by Suzanne Spunner alongside Carmelina Di Guglielmo, photo Ponch Hawkes. Three 'dykettes' performing in 'Jingleball', Gay Sweatshop, ICA, London 1976. Five sneering lesbians, Hormone Imbalance Review, rehearsal pic, photo maybe by Jill Posener. Woman in headdress with feather - Sara Hardy performing her monologue 'Thitcher Thatch', London 1980, photo Pam Isherwood. Two women looking quizzical - Sara Hardy and Lois Ellis in 'Radclyffe and Una LIVE from Heaven', La Mama, Melbourne, 1992, photo Clare de Bruin. Pink shirt photo by Jane Murphy. Other images self-made or credit untraceable at present.
I acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land where I live and work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation, and pay my respects to the Elders, past, present and future.