Luck of the Draw, produced by Brisbane’s Kooemba Jdarra and subsequently by the Darwin Theatre Company, is a play about Indigenous survival and identity.
Written as a response to the Howard Government’s refusal to offer an apology, Luck of the Draw is a hard hitting play that deals with the tragic consequences of the forced removal of Indigenous children from their families. It focuses on the impact this policy had on both the parents who lost their children and the children who lost their identity. It confronts the issue of identity from the perspective of a fair skinned Indigenous woman who has been raised in a white middle class family and discovers she is Indigenous.
Luck of the Draw is based on Ned Manning’s experiences at the EORA Centre in Redfern in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s. It draws heavily on his own children’s experiences in being accepted as Indigenous on the strength of their heritage and identification rather than their skin colour.
'A mesmerising piece of theatre.' The Australian
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Female | Unspecified | under 3 minutes
Starts on page 85
EXTRACT: Bloody chooks! Get out of here. Go on. Get out of it. Get back in your yard. What do you think this is? Messin' up my yard. You don't belong out here. You know that! Go on. Get back where you belong. I'll sool them mangy dogs on to you. I will. Get back in there and lay a few decent eggs for a change. Can't be bothered. Can't be bothered anymore. I'm no bloody good to you anymore. No I'm not. Look at me. Look at me girl.
Female | Unspecified | 3 to 5 minutes
Starts on page 7
EXTRACT: There. That's better. That's a good girl. Go to sleep now. Mummy's got all those beautiful plums to stew up. Yes she has. Lots of big, juicy plums. Beautiful! That's what's so good about this place, bub. Plenty of fresh tucker, eh? Not like that lousy Home and all that rotten porridge. What's that? Reckon it shows? Reckon I'm putting on weight? What are you grinning at? You're meant to be asleep. You laughin' at your silly mummy? Just you wait, you're going to love it here, you are. Down the swimmin' hole, swingin' off the rope...
Male | Unspecified | 5 to 10 minutes
Starts on page 14
EXTRACT: This fella I was workin' for, his son is a bit of a lad. Known to go off the rails from time to time. Anyway, one night we were sittin' round a fire playin' a bit of poker and I was startin' to hit a bit of a purple patch. Started cleanin' everyone out. In the end it was only me and the young bloke left. Well, he reckoned he had had a pretty good hand so he put the lot on it. I reckoned I could match him so I raised him, but he was broke...