In 1972 the National Black Theatre was founded at 181 Regent Street, Redfern. The National Black Theatre was fundamental in the careers of actors Bob Maza, Justine Saunders, Jack Charles and Lillian Crombie, who became key figures in a community that also included director Brian Syron and activist Gary Foley. The National Black Theatre presented works by noted Aboriginal playwrights Kevin Gilbert and Robert Merritt, and was part of a political and cultural revolution that was occurring in Aboriginal Australia in the early 1970s.

This exhibition will honour the people who founded the National Black Theatre using archival material from the ABC, personal collections, and state and national archives. The exhibition is curated by Tess Allas from the College of Fine Arts, UNSW. A symposium featuring speakers from the National Black Theatre alumni, leaders and artists will take place on January 14 2012. Presented by Carriageworks and Sydney Festival in association with ABC.


Zac Martin in a scene from Basically Black, 1973
Image: Courtesy of the ABC