Close to the Bone


Written with students from the EORA Centre in Redfern in 1990, some of whom were members of the Stolen Generation, Close to the Bone is a story about a family’s survival in the face of adversity. Moving from the Mission to Redfern and back again, it celebrates Redfern’s role in providing a focal point for dislocated Indigenous Australians. The play also honours the role EORA played in bringing people together and linking them with family. It was first performed by EORA students at the old Centre in the heart of Redfern. It was directed by Lydia Miller, David Kennedy and Rhoda Roberts with music by Scott Saunders and Karen Vaughan.

Close to the Bone is a large cast play that is suitable for students of all ages and youth groups.

This play presents the issue of the stolen generations with an authentic Aboriginal voice and gives a powerful impression of the continuing human impact of bureaucratic decisions on Aboriginal families, both in the past and now. The New South Wales Aboriginal Education Consultative Group fully supports and endorses the publication of this play.’ Linda Burney, President, NSW AECG

  • 0
  • 10 total
  • 9 female identifying, 1 male identifying
  • history
  • 16 to 18, 18+
  • teen, young adult, adult
  • Currency Press


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Male | Unspecified | 5 to 10 minutes
Starts on page 17

EXTRACT: Now you girls settle down there and I'll tell you a yarn. When I was a young fella and your Mum was only a baby my Dad taught me the most important lesson I've ever learnt. One day we were wandering along the street, just mindin' our own business, when we heard this racket. Well, the old man, he was always interested in what was goin' on, so we race around the corner to where the racket's coming from. Well, strike me pink if there was this fella, a big fella with a big ugly nose, there he was...


Male | Unspecified | 5 to 10 minutes
Starts on page 45

EXTRACT: Hey, Naomi, what you doin' here? You're meant to be up bush aren't you? Hang about, you're not Naomi. You're that girl. That's who you are. What you bloody goin' on about! You bloody old fool. We showed you who's Bossman, Harry Boulder. Gave you something to remember us by didn't we? You thievin' mongrel. Go to buggery. Go away! Go on git out of here. You're dead. Finished. They told me you died. Hey! Sis, I seen her. What about that rotten Mission Manager. We got him though, didn't we boys. We sorted him right out. Me and Ronnie.


Female | Teen | 5 to 10 minutes
Starts on page 58

EXTRACT: That's not the point, you should've told me! I could've understood that but... Oh, my God! How many people are out there like me, not sure who they are or where they come from? You know what you've done to me? You've denied've stopped me from knowing who I really am. Can you imagine how that feels? God. Suddenly I'm Aboriginal. Suddenly I've got...a family. Another family. Sisters I don't even know. A mother I know nothing about. What am I meant to do now? How do I become Aboriginal? Tell me! How do I do that?


Female | Unspecified | 5 to 10 minutes
Starts on page 59

EXTRACT: Git out of here. Go on! Git out of it! Git back into your yard, messing' up my garden, what do you think it is? Christmas or something? Shoo shoo. I'll sool the dogs onto you, you git into your nest and lay a few decent eggs for a change. You kids! Be careful. Watch out! Bettina, look after your sister. That river's dangerous you know. Rosie! Bloody kids... Funny getting older.Your life flashes by. Your mind goes back and forth, things jump out at you, surprise you. Some things get jumbled up and become like a big melting pot...

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Purchase at Currency Press$23.99
SKU: CP-142 Category:

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